To ace CAT and XAT – Salonee Gupta [Interview]



Salonee Gupta is the cheerful young lady who did exceptionally well in both CAT and XAT. To get a 99.53 percentile is no easy feat. We caught up with Salonee to ask her how she did it.

Congratulations on having your dream come true! How does it feel to be in the great institution now?

Feels really good!

Acing in college and cracking the MBA entrance exams. What is the secret behind being a high achiever?

Smart Work

How did you start preparing for the MBA entrance exams? Was there any specific reason behind wanting to pursue MBA?

Joined test series of a famous coaching institute and self-study starting with the basics every weekend around 4 months before the CAT exam as I was preparing while working. Reason to pursue MBA was to achieve faster growth in the corporate world.

Did you play an active role in college events too? How did you handle studies + social activities + prep?

Yes, I was active in college events. Proper time management and I think it is easy to maintain balance if you are involved in things you enjoy or have a passion for.

Students are often confused about whether to indulge in extra currics at college or not. What do you suggest?

Yes Yes Yes!!! It is extremely important. It rather helps get into a good institute as well as they look for passion in students and even after joining the MBA institute, it helps in getting a good internship and placement.

Apart from CAT, which all other exams did you appear in?


Please share your best percentiles / scores

CAT: 99.53pc, XAT: Had calls from XLRI-BM and HRM

After clearing the written exam, is it true that GD and PI are even tougher nut to crack?

To an extent, Yes

How was your GD (must have been good!)? Can you share details of the round?

For IIM Lucknow, my GD topic was related to women empowerment. It was close to a fish market, but some good points came out during the discussion.

How was your interview?

Went well. I was asked about my work experience in BHEL, about myself, extra-curricular activities, engineering course related and HR questions like ‘Why MBA’.

One question that really confused you in the interview and how you tackled it.

Something related to difference between architect and civil engineer. Told the interviewers as much as I knew with confidence.

Do coaching classes play an important role in preparation? Did you join any?


Five must have books for CAT preparation

Some coaching institute’s study material will do.

Three tips for how to start preparing

1. Systematic and smart study is very important.

2. Focus on clearing your basics.

3. Join a good test series and practice enough questions to increase speed.

One thing students must know about the online pattern

Reading comprehensions have an option of highlighting important lines, if you want.

What are your future plans? May you achieve big things in life again and again!

I’ll work in a consulting firm for some years before starting on my own.

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