Lessons from CAT 99.98%iler

Lessons from CAT 99.98 percentiler

Name Mayank Agrawal
CAT percentile 99.98%ile
Professional Background – Engineer, 2 years work ex
CAT Aspirant since Aug 2013 (2 years)

Advice from Mayank
Today with immense happiness I am proud to announce my CAT percentile. During these past 2 years I have stumbled a lot, fallen multiple times, gotten disheartened, given up, but ultimately with my proper planning, I am at a stage where I can give a few pieces of advice to my fellow CAT aspirants. I am truly thankful to the community here and this post is a token of my gratitude towards all of you.

LESSON 1 – PREPARING FOR CAT IS SERIOUS BUSINESS

Preparation for CAT is truly some serious business. Make sure when you take this on you are fully committed to it. DO NOT consider it one of several things that you can do. It requires careful planning and should be given its due importance.

HOW I LEARNED IT THE HARD WAY

I thought of preparing for CAT in August 2013. But frankly, for the next 1 year till August 2014, everything happened except CAT prep, I scored miserable in CAT 2013. Professionally had too much work at office changing job and personally my mom was not well, Even though so many things happened to me in this one year, something kept bugging me – I could not prepare for CAT, something that I had set as a target.

HOW DID I DO RIGHT?

At this point, I consciously suspended my plans for CAT since I did not want myself chasing multiple deadlines and not being able to focus on anything properly. I decided to take this on from Aug onwards.

LESSON 2 – PLAN IT LIKE YOU WOULD PLAN ANY OF YOUR WORK PROJECTS

CAT prep is a project of its own. I am a IT engineer by profession and I can say that with confidence that one must plan how to prepare for CAT before actually starting to study. By planning, I mean serious planning like spending 1-2 days in planning.

HOW I LEARNED IT THE HARD WAY

When I started preparing this year, I immediately purchased the books and started reading from cover to cover without actually having a goal in mind for all that reading effort. I had goals as “complete Numbers in 1 week”, “read DI book in 15 days”. While at the time, these seemed like reasonable goals, now I look back and laugh at myself. My goal should have gotten me closer to my target score but these goals served only as checkmarks.

HOW DID I DO RIGHT?

In August after taking a mock test and scoring a mere 63%ile, I realized that I need to take a serious look at my technique of preparation. This is when I attended CAT strategy session. This is when I set up real goals for my CAT prep. Here is what my milestones were:
August and September – Know all topics. Complete all basics and material i have in 2 months.
October – Get accuracy above 80% even for difficult questions.
November – Fine-tune preparation by taking mocks and working on weak areas.
Now with an aim to accomplish these milestones, I then devised by study plan with the right study resources.

I made a comeback in the CAT.. hope you do same.

Mayank.