“B-School-Passion-Life” Balance: The Lessons I Learned During My MBA

“When I received an acceptance call from FIIB, it caused a 360-degree turn in my personal life as my parents wanted me to travel a different lane. Belonging to conservative middle-class ménage, I knew that making the choice to go back to school to pursue an MBA would be an adjustment. But, isn’t not choosing anything akin to making a choice too?”-Simran Nagpal, 2019-21, MBA-Marketing, FIIB. 

The Real Struggle

I still remember putting ‘convincing my parents’ at the top and hardest of all among the task list that I had put together to turn my MBA dream into a reality. As if this was the only barrier that would have stopped me from pursuing what I desired the most. I knew from the beginning that in order to fulfil my dreams, I would need to bring out the best within me to seize the opportunities coming my way. In the first few months at FIIB, I got pretty heavily involved in classroom presentations, group projects, individual assignments, and out-of-the-classroom activities. With all the hard work and dedication I put in, I was able to get myself a place in the FIIB’s leadership program – my first proud moment that helped me justify both of my decision to join FIIB and my values. 

Reinforcing Self to Bridging Voids

Going further in living my values and proving the worth of my decision, I started participating in most of the extracurricular activities happening at FIIB. But, as time passed, and I completed six months at FIIB, I realised there’s something still missing in my MBA journey. This is when I thought of seeking help from my faculty mentor. When I discussed the void that I felt even after scoring well in my subjects and literally getting selected in all the major management-led student initiatives with my Mentor, Dr. Amiya Mohapatra, he suggested that I should try to figure out and explore “the one thing that electrifies you!””

Since the school times, I was counted amongst the students who never said no to extra classes, participated in extracurriculars with full enthusiasm, and counted communication as my strongest point. Considering Dr. Amiya’s suggestion, when I put thought into what could be that one thing that excites me and would challenge me the most, I got my answer. It was “standing on the podium of my college auditorium.” Yes, that was it! 

Combining Passion with Intellect 

Public speaking is something that always electrifies me and this is the reason why I chose Marketing as my specialization as well. It is what eggs me to present my thoughts and ideas in the most embellished manner. It helps me present and distinguish my personality in a crowd. And undoubtedly, it will give me the shoulder to become a successful marketer one day. “I am lucky enough to have that courage in me and guidance from my Faculty mentor that not only allowed me to continue my passion in a tight program schedule but also  helped me to integrate my confidence with my learnings at FIIB in the best possible manner.

I genuinely believe that a good Public Speaker and successful Marketer possess similar traits. Be it a curious opportunist trying to market a product through words,  or an expert storyteller grabbing the attention of its listeners, or a remarkable observer discovering people’s behaviour and catch their area of interest – each one of them is trying to create value either for themselves or the brand they’re associated with.

Finding the Way Back

I sometimes question myself – would I be able to sustain both the pieces of my identity that mean so much to me? – my passion for public speaking and my desire to be a successful marketer. But at that time, when I honestly focus on my achievements, volunteering opportunities, and everything else that’s yet to come in my way, the doubts start fading. After all, at the end of the day, what matters is that you trust your conscience, introspect your strength and direct your mind and soul towards the chosen path. And that’s how I would describe my ultimate mantra of achieving success!