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Mahesh Yalamanchili – An ISB admit with a 710 on the GMAT

Posted on December 14, 2016

In conversation with Mahesh Yalamanchilli, who bagged an ISB admit with a 710 on the GMAT


Can you tell us a bit about your profile?

I graduated from NIT Warangal in Mechanical Engineering and got placed in Oracle Financial Services soon after that. At the same time, I got my start-up up and running- we’re an e-commerce site that deals with merchandising for political parties. I worked in Oracle for about 1.5 years and decided to stop and shift my complete focus towards my start-up. It’s been 3 years since then and MBA is next on the plate.

So you’re an entrepreneur. Why an MBA after that?

Coming from NIT Warangal, which had no proper alumni background back then, it was quite difficult for us to find proper mentors and fund the start-up. Also, most of the time I was surrounded by engineers who weren’t well versed in the financial and marketing side of the business. I wanted to be surrounded by people who were experts in other aspects of business and had different perspectives. And I decided, MBA was the right thing to do.

How did you approach the GMAT?

Since I came from an engineering background, Quant was pretty easy for me. Verbal, on the other hand was difficult and I was looking for help when I came across CrackVerbal. I used advanced, GMAT- oriented material from CrackVerbal to prepare.
I gave 2 attempts on the GMAT and scored 690 and 710 respectively.
My Verbal scores were really low on my first attempt and after attending CrackVerbal’s Verbal classes, the second time my Verbal scores improved. Even though I expected a 730, I got lesser than expected in Quant. But I was happy with my 710.

What were the B-schools you applied to? And why ISB?

I mostly applied to US B-schools- they were my first preference and ISB was a back-up plan. I got 2 waitlists, but since I had applied in Round 2, I had to wait till May to know if I got admitted. And since ISB was starting in April, I decided it was better to opt for ISB.

What was it that made you stand out in your essays?

Mostly, it was my entrepreneurship experience that made me stand out. Even while I was working in Oracle, I dealt with major implementation in public sector banks for a year. The diversified work profile definitely helped!

How were your interviews?

The interviews at US B-schools were very short. There were questions like “Why MBA? Why now? What do you want to do post MBA?”
For the ISB interview, the Adcom had an ISB alumni who could relate really well with my entrepreneurship experience. So it went really well.

How was the CrackVerbal experience?

I had a good experience in the past with CrackVerbal with regard to my GMAT Coaching. This made me opt for their application services as well and I wasn’t disappointed.

If you had to give one line of advice to MBA aspirants out there, what would that be?

Wake up early in your career and give the GMAT as early as possible. Time waits for no man. If you want it that bad, go get it.
Do you have what it takes to get into ISB?
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