Had my Fuqua interview yesterday.. As I had posted earlier, the school had offered me a telephonic interview with a Delhi-based alum, but fortunately, the interviewer was interested in a face-to-face interview too.(Putting myself in his shoes, if I were to choose a candidate for my alma-mater,I too would prefer to meet him in person before I certify him to be a part of my community)

The interview was scheduled at 6 in the evening at his office in Delhi. I had planned to reach at least 15-20 minutes before time, but Mr Murphy does not normally like me reaching anywhere in time. I had an urgent client meeting at office, which was suppose to end at 1:30, but stretched way beyond 3:30, when I was forced to excuse myself. Rushed to home and got ready in business formals. Following that, there were some traffic jams on the way,which caused me to be late by about 3-5 minutes. I was planning to start with an apology. I hate to start on a defensive note.But as it turned out, I never needed to. The interviewer was stuck in some important work and the actual interview started only at about 8!! Now, this was particularly exhausting because I had missed my breakfast,lunch and evening snacks for different reasons. And a banana and a few biscuits was all I had for the entire day!!

Anyways, the interview started with him taking a look at my  resume and asking me some ice-breaker questions like for how long, I have been in Delhi.(and some more around that.) That was followed by a question on my fav subects in college. (This made me wonder if he was from techie background too) I answered algorithm-design, data-structures and databases, adding stupidly that I am no longer in touch with databases. Somehow, didn’t want to be grilled on first normal form n all, though a data-structures interview would have been perfectly tolerable . 😀 Interestingly, next, he asked me about my least fav subject too and Machine Drawing was almost the clear winner here.

Now, we were on to the main course.. “Tell me something about yourself, starting wth your education.” The qualifier, “starting wth your education” surely helped me shape the answer better. I believe I was able to handle the Q quite well,with him interrupting quite often to ask a question or two.. Then for one particular competition that I had won, the discussion went a bit too long (which, of course, was good for me) and after that, we shifted to the ever important Qs: “Why MBA? Why now? Why Fuqua” in this order.

I gave him my goals and showed how an MBA helps me reach there. He argued how the same can be attained without an MBA. I agreed, but still insisted that an MBA will prepare me better for the challenges. Arguing “why now” was not that difficult and I have done enough research on Fuqua that  I don’t think that “Why Fuqua” can  let me down anywhere. From his expressions, I felt that he liked my homework on Fuqua. (though I somehow messed up slightly when I forgot the exact name of the course and had to say the “strategic planning thing” 😐 in place of “strategic planning practicum”)

Here’re some Qs that I remember from rest of the interview: /* More to be added as and when I remember */

  • Strengths and development opportunities. Bragged a lot (of course, everything real 🙂 ) and then mentioned a real improvement area.
  • What role do i play in a team? Depends on my responsiblities, I am a good follower, good peer and a good leader too 🙂 ; quoted examples (from professional and extra-curricular areas) of each.
  • Tell me about a team-effort that did not work out well. Stumped me! Dug deeper and then mentioned an event at my undergrad.
  • Tell me about a time when you had to convey a difficult message to somebody. Again stumped me, but then remembered a recent incident when I discovered and admitted a goof-up I made 2 years back.
  • How would you enrich the cultutre at Fuqua? Mentioned a club i’d start (for Duke Univ, Fuqua may not have enough members for that) , a club that I’d like to rejuvenate and 2-3 clubs that I’d be a part of.
  • If given a chance, what would you like to change in your life?  Re-mentioned a couple of failiures/mistakes that i had already covered and told him how I learnt from each of them and would not actually like to change those. Then, concluded with sth like.. “only thing that I would perhaps like to change would be my focus on physical health.” (I used to be underweight by any standards; still not that healthy.)
  • Is there anything else that you’d like me to know? Now this was something that made me happy. Because thinking over this Q made me realise that I had successfuly uncovered almost all major portions of my candidature in the interview. There wasn’t much to tell, except for a story about overcoming a challenging time before my undergrad days, which I decided to tell him next.
  • Is there anything you’d like to ask?  I asked about his Fuqua experience and about Fuqua alum-community in India. He answered very excitedly for the first question, which reinforced the spirit of Team Fuqua that I have visualised in my mind. For the 2nd Question, he very candidly mentioned that in terms of numbers, Fuqua@India is a small, but strong and growing community.

Overall, the interview went quite well, There were some small slip-ups ( not all noticeable) and the questions made me uncover more mistakes than I have normally seen in an interview. But I feel that i handled each of them quite well highlighting the lessons learnt and what I did after that and this hopefully made sure that none of them actually sends out a negative signals.

I am quite optimistic about the results. It’s a wait of 16 days starting today.

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12 Responses to “Fuqua interview done”

  1. Nitin Rao says:

    Sounds like a good interview.

    Good luck and keep us posted!

  2. Akash says:

    All d best buddy 🙂

  3. ahembeea says:

    16 days it is now between you and Fuqua ! Atb !!

  4. MBAlmighty says:

    May you have a Merry Christmas!!! 🙂

  5. Kiran says:

    can u post more abt the interview .. like the questions asked etc..

  6. Lauren says:

    Hello MissionMBA,

    Congratulations on what sounds like a great Fuqua interview! This is quite a thorough report of your experience. Would you be willing to post it to the Clear Admit Wiki for the benefit of other applicants? You can do so by clicking here, or simply e-mailing the text to wiki@clearadmit.com (we’ll be sure to link back to your blog when we post your information).

    We’d also love to hear about campus visits and the factors that influenced your decisions about where to apply.

    Thanks and best of luck in the MBA admissions process!


  7. Coronet says:

    …. and now we wait! [:)]
    All the very best to you!

  8. McCoy says:

    sounds good buddy..

  9. Vani says:

    Hi MissionMBA

    Congratulations! Thanks for sharing your interview experience.

    I strongly believe that a current student or an alumnus knows the best about their school, and what qualities their school looks for in an MBA candidate. So, I suggest MBA candidates speak to as many alumni/current students as possible before the interview.

    Best of luck!

    – Get Ready For The Interview

  10. missionmba says:

    Thanks everyone!!

    “More about the interview??” 😮
    “like the questions asked etc..”

    Dude, did you actually read my post.. It has everything that I remember and would like to share including the Qs and the direction of my answers..

    Clearadmit is one of the resources that have helped me a lot in Bschool research and apping process.. I’d surely love to contribute to the wiki.. (Sent you an email for this)

  11. Kiran says:

    Hi, sorry,

    actually when i posted the message, i did not expand your post. I realized it only later.
    I wanted to delete or edit it later but did not find a way out.
    your post was very helpful.


  12. […] app?? For others, I too had my Fuqua interview last Tuesday.. You can read my experiences here: Fuqua interview done My journey to a B-school……. ~SS Race to perfection has no finish line!! I Blog at:: […]

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