When Akshay Mehndiratta scored a perfect 100 in CAT 2016, he was sure that he will be able to make it to his dream college, IIM Ahmedabad. He is an IIT Delhi graduate (B Tech in Chemical Engineering) with 8.828/10 score had all the academic credentials to be a part of India’s top Business school. Akshay Mehndiratta, owes his incredible 100 percentile to a meticulously planned preparation routine, managed skillfully along with his hectic work schedule.
1. How does it feel to get perfect 100 percentile in the CAT exam and be among the toppers?
I was expecting a good percentile, somewhere in the range of 99.7 and more, but getting the perfect percentile was like a golden moment for me. There was a lot of hard work behind the achievement which finally paid off.
2. Was the exam tough compared to the mock tests and previous year papers? How will you categorize the different sections based on their difficulty level?
My initial thoughts were that the test did not go as per my expectations since I considered Quantitative Ability as my biggest strength and I had missed quite a lot of questions. This was not the case while I was taking the mock tests. After going through the reviews of the exam, I realized that I had done fairly well. Verbal Ability was the easiest of all the sections.
3. How did you prepare for CAT? Did you opt for mock tests? How much time did you give for your preparation?
I got time to prepare only during weekends. I used to work on the Verbal Ability section and other weak areas on Saturdays. On Sundays, I used to take mock tests and analyse it comprehensively. I followed this routine from June onwards.
4. Currently, toppers prefer staying away from social media what was your take on the same during your preparations?
I was quite active on the social media platforms as it helped me to de-stress. I was active on Facebook, Instagram, and Whats App. However, on the contrary I feel that too much use of them might have an adverse effect too.
5. What tips would you like to give to those who plan to take up CAT in the upcoming year?
It is important to identify your weak areas as early as possible and start working on it. In the initial days of preparation use some good materials. Once you start taking the mock exams and test series, then there should be improvement. Take as many mock tests as possible as it will help in maintaining consistency, devising correct strategy and improving accuracy.
Tips for CAT Exams from Akshay:-
- It is more about practice and less about preparation. Since its an aptitude test so it is important to keep calm and your attitude right.
- Working on basic skills is important as it will be more helpful in order to crack the paper.
- After giving these mock test I used to analyse my performance every week and based on it prepared for the exam.