Should I Quit My Job To Prepare For CAT? How Will A Gap In My Resume Look?

should i quit my job for CAT preparation?
Should i quit my job for CAT preparation?

As we all know, the CAT exam is among the most popular MBA entrance exams in India, with nearly 2 lakh individuals taking it annually. Among these test-takers are numerous employed professionals. While it is a challenging task to ace the CAT while holding down a job, it is not an impossible one, as many aspirants have successfully gained admission to India’s top IIMs without leaving their current employment. However, CAT hopefuls frequently find themselves torn between continuing to work and preparing for the exam, leading some to consider resigning from their job to focus solely on their studies. This is a common mistake that many aspirants make when attempting to crack the CAT. This article will provide clarity on the issue of leaving one’s job to prepare for the CAT exam and provide guidance on how to prepare for the test without quitting one’s job.

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Should I Quit My Job To Prepare For the CAT?

Absolutely not! While it is undoubtedly a challenging endeavor to crack the CAT while simultaneously holding down a job, it is crucial to note that resigning from one’s employment is not the answer. Many aspirants believe that dedicating as much time as feasible to preparation is the key to acing the CAT, which leads them to quit their jobs. However, if you speak with individuals who have successfully cracked the CAT, you will find that most of them are working professionals. The most crucial skill that a management student requires is the ability to manage multiple responsibilities effectively.

Opting to resign from your job to prepare for the CAT not only creates a gap in your resume but also causes you to miss out on critical skills required for MBA aspirants seeking admission to top-tier business schools. The ability to multitask and manage time efficiently are among the most important skills for an MBA student. Preparing for the CAT while concurrently working necessitates the mastery of these skills, as you must balance your job responsibilities with your exam preparation. In doing so, you will not only improve your multitasking skills but also hone your time management abilities.

Additionally, it is essential to possess strong time-management skills. One way to accomplish this is by developing a pre-planned preparation schedule that is adaptable enough to allocate time for both your job and CAT exam preparation.

Advantages Of Preparing for CAT while Working

  • Preparing for the CAT while simultaneously holding a job can enhance your time management and multitasking abilities.
  • Your work experience will be advantageous, as it carries weight during the admission process at IIMs.
  • As a working professional, you will experience less mental pressure, resulting in a lower risk of stress and burnout.
  • Further, managing both work and exam preparation can boost your confidence when facing the interview process, a critical factor in securing admission to top MBA programs.
  • Ultimately, this can help improve the overall quality of your profile.

How Will This Gap Affect Your Resume?

Choosing to take a break from work to prepare for the CAT will inevitably impact your resume. Numerous other aspirants have achieved excellent percentiles on the exam while also working, making their profiles more attractive to potential employers. As a result, your profile may be ranked lower in comparison. Therefore, it is recommended not to resign from your job solely for CAT preparation.

How To Justify Gap Years In IIM Interview?

During the interview process, you will likely be asked about any gaps in your work history. It is essential to provide a valid explanation other than preparing for the CAT, as this reason may not be considered acceptable. It is advisable to fill any gaps in your employment history with relevant work experience, internships, skill-building activities, or freelance work. Illness or hospitalization are valid reasons for a work gap, but for any other reason, it is crucial to provide a valid explanation.

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