Thursday, August 10, 2006

Edgy in the Sheraton elevator

It was an experience of a lifetime. I recently finished interviewing with schools at the annual AMA conference in Chicago. In total I got to talk to 23 universities over a 4 day period.

It all started on friday the 4th of August,the first interview was with UT Dallas. They seemed very interested in my research and that really eased the pressure on me and helped me calm my nerves !! The next was Emory and that gave me a lot of confidence. While dthe questions from Dallas were on the academic part of my research, the Emory questions were primarily on the managerial relevance. I felt relieved the first day and very excited that I felt confident now.

Day two, began with NUS and I was grilled quite a bit on measurement issues. UIUC followed second and they were among the nicest people that I met at AMA. They were very pleasant to talk to and the interview gave me a break from the usual stress. UCLA was a tough interview, but I guess I came out alive !!! Indiana was very nice to talk to and gave me a break in terms of managing my stress. The lunch break was a relief and I also noticed that I had learnt quite abit in improvising depending on the school.

Rochester was fairly straighforward, while Minnesota which followed next was a laughing riot. They were very funny and talked a lot about other things and that made me feel good and safe :) Central Florida was tougher than I expected, but still manageaable. LBS was a good interview with everyone genuinely interested and I really liked presenting to them. The day ended with Singapore Management University and I was thoroughly relaxed once I got over with it. The experience seemed much more enjoyable than I expected.

Saturday began with Pullman, a very nice experience with more interaction and no grilling questions. Goodwill helped !! :) Insead and Asutin followed and I came out thinking..wow..I finished quite a bit !! Connecticut and Syracuse were fairly straightforward and very plesant to interact with. UNC was a toguh interview but I really liked the people and felt at home!! Cox and Mays followed and I was getting close to the finish, preparing for the excitement of meeting the tough one.. Maryland. Came out alive :)!!! and ended with UC Davis, a grillign one no doubt.

Had dinner with my friends who were mostly done with ther interviews. Had a good night's sleep and finished with South Carolina and Southern California. Carolina was very very nice to me and I was surprised to meet folks who did SN research ay Carolina. Marshall, the best ranked school on my list seemed genuinely interested and I was pleased to get a pat on my back after i finished !!!

It was an experience thata required tons of zeal and endurance. I had to keep up my spirits and the best part was meeting so many new people at some of the best b-schools. I guess my passion carried the day for me. The excitement of waiting for schools to call me back is taking on me now !!!

9 hours of interviewing with an hour's break on saturday and then 10 hours of back to back interviews without a break on sunday .. I will never forget that !!!!