Should I quit my job to prepare for CAT?
This is a tricky question but the answer, while not a straight forward one, will be different for different people. The first thing to do is to ask yourself ‘why?’. Why do you want to quit your job for writing CAT. The most often quoted answer is ‘I don’t get enough time to prepare due to work pressure’. If you look at this answer a little closely, it translates to something that is close to ‘I find it difficult to manage more than one thing at a time’. The reason you want to do MBA is because you want to acquire skills that help you move into managerial roles in the short term and leadership positions in the longer term. Or you have some higher order reason in mind. Whatever is the reason, these roles / positions inherently come with the challenge of dealing with different people and different issues within a day’s work. The Reading Comprehension section of CAT expects one to process a lot of information simultaneously and bring back from memory while answering the questions.
Multi tasking as a skill
There are two different people – those that process different things simultaneously in the mind and act on one thing at a time very effectively. These are people who can multi task. Then there are those that process only one thing in the mind and act on that one thing, at a time very efficiently. These are people who are at their best when they take up tasks sequentially. By itself, doing one thing at a time is not a bad thing. It has its own advantages, like focus and better quality. But the pulls and pressures of a leader are multi-fold and essentially require one to process and act on multiple things parallelly. Often, in your work places too, you find someone who can do this very adeptly and you are in awe of such people. Many believe that this is a skill that they don’t possess. But like any other skill, this too can be acquired with practice and diligence.
Avoid anything that you can live without
Just make a note of all the activities that you do in a day, whether in office or at home and identify those that you can avoid, at least in the short term. Some tips would be:
- Make a note of some important formulae / notes on a piece of paper, or on your mobile and try to go through them whenever you find time in the office, even if it is for 5 to 10 min.
- See whether you can cut down on the time you spend on going out for lunch or tea.
- Constantly ask whether you are spending your time at your workplace efficiently. Squeeze in whatever little time you can to accommodate checking on the notes you carry with you.
- Find out from your mother as to how she is able to juggle with so many tasks in a day. She may not be able to explain time management and efficiencies a’ la Frederick Taylor, but prod her a little and you are bound to be surprised.
Without which not !!
If the reason to quit a job to write CAT, is not the paucity of time arising out of work pressures, it may be due to other reasons that are dependent on a few things like the stage of your career, the stage of your preparation etc.
If you are at a stage in your career where quitting your job has consequences for the family’s financial resources, you might want to think twice before quitting. But if you have financial support otherwise, either from your parents or your spouse, and have no other burdens and responsibilities, you might consider quitting to take up your preparation with full vigour.
But the most important driving force comes from answering the question – ‘how badly do I want to pursue MBA?’. If the answer is ‘sine qua non’, you will do everything in your power to realise your dream. If you are telling yourself, even remotely, that you can grow in your career and live without doing MBA, you will eventually quit your preparation and continue with your job. A very important ingredient to keeping yourself on course, is to enjoy the process, of solving problems, of reading different genres of english language, solving math puzzles and building logical ability etc. If you are not enjoying this process, it is better to quit preparation. Because, there must be something else that interests you and you should search for that.
Sometimes, just talking to someone – a friend or a mentor or someone who has gone through the process helps. You can reach out to our experts, who have gone through this and done this before at RankerEdge, just by writing a note to firstname.lastname@example.org.