Home Hotel management Meet the MBA class of 2023: Ati Alok Kumar, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad

Meet the MBA class of 2023: Ati Alok Kumar, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad

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“A leader in an MBA class. Likes to write poems and essays. A passionate animal lover.

Hometown: Samastipur, Bihar

fun fact about yourself: I know the names of all the dogs and cats on campus, which earned me the nickname “Mowgli” from my friends!

Undergraduate School and Major: Institute of Hotel Management, Pusa, New Delhi; B.Sc. in Hospitality and Hotel Administration

Most recent employer and job title: Taj Palace, an IHCL hotel, party leader

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of IIM Ahmedabad’s MBA programming that made you choose this business school and why was it so important to you? Nurturing influential leaders for the various organizations in the Indian ecosystem is the credo of IIMA. From civil servants to CEOs of giant conglomerates, the institution has been a driving force in developing leaders who not only look at profits on a balance sheet but also contribute to marginalized sections of society. Also, it is a community that provides a safe space for respectful dissent no matter who the person is and something that sets IIMA apart from many other business schools. I have always believed in expressing my opinions with consideration and this freedom to express even uncomfortable opinions is what has made the institute so important to me.

What was your favorite class or extracurricular activity at IIM Ahmedabad? What was the most important lesson you learned from it? My favorite extracurricular activity at school is the engagement with Soul Curry Club. It is a student club and promotes dialogues about everything in the universe and beyond our routine lives. As secretary of the club, it gives me great pleasure to bring together my otherwise geeky comrades for philosophical debates. The importance of turning off the screens for an hour every week to nurture the soul with good old human connections is by far my most important learning at the club.

Describe your biggest achievement in your career so far: I was leading part of the Taj Palace team caring for the visiting President of the United States in February 2020. The pressure to handle even the smallest task to achieve culinary perfection is by far the most remarkable achievement of my career. Expectations were high and the image of the brand and the image of the nation were at stake. Being able to successfully lead the team to achieve the same was indeed something I achieved. The Taj Palace team was applauded by the President’s office and the Prime Minister of India for the flawless experience.

Describe your greatest achievement as an MBA student so far: As an MBA student, my influence on my peers in the hospitality industry and subsequent realization of new arenas for them is my most notable achievement. An otherwise underpaid and overworked workforce, hospitality professionals bring an unparalleled sense of customer focus to an organization. Since people heard about my journey to IIMA, many aspirants have connected with me on various platforms seeking more information about career prospects beyond their comfort zones. Being that inspiration is humbling for me as an MBA student.

What is your class’s favorite place outside of school? Why are you meeting there? Outside of class, the class hangs out at Campus Café, a catering restaurant run by a nice gentleman named Bhavesh Bhai. Its name gave the food joint a nickname – BB’s. People gather there to escape the sweltering heat of Ahmedabad and brace themselves for the readings the next day. The place is surrounded by tall trees, creepers, and cute dogs that provide the much-needed dose of serotonin. Bhavesh Bhai is another thing that binds people to Campus Café. He’s that absentee bartender that stressed and anxious adults need after a hard day of webinars, quizzes, and study group meetings.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? The idea of ​​pursuing an MBA came when the COVID-19 pandemic hit and I was thinking about my career. Hospitality had been the hardest hit and I was strategizing on the way forward to stay relevant not just in hospitality but in sectors beyond. Unlearning, perfecting and relearning were the answers that presented themselves to me. An MBA provided the most optimal solution to achieve these goals. With regard to post-graduation plans, I am keen to look at general management and policy-based roles in the public or private sector. However, the most important thing is that I keep my options open because coming here has shown me that there are still many worlds waiting to be explored.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into IIM Ahmedabad? To potential candidates, I would like to say that due diligence is an underrated skill and they need to do it thoroughly to be absolutely sure that an MBA is what will help them achieve the goals they have set for themselves. It is also imperative that candidates retain their originality and essence throughout this journey. Every story is unique and the world wants to know it, so go out there and tell it!

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