What to expect in the SoP & Personal Interview Round of Admission Process?

Admission for the Master In Sports Management course and the Post Graduate Program In Sports And Wellness Management program at IISM is a 3 round process comprising of:

  • SMAT
  • SoP Submission
  • Personal Interview.

Post the SMAT test, selected candidates shall be provided a questionnaire based on which they’ll have to submit a “Statement Of Purpose (SoP)” for joining.

The candidates shall be shortlisted based on the test and SoP submission for a personal round of interview by the panelists from Sports Industry.

The interview shall focus on candidate’s liking and awareness on business in sports.

So let’s dive deep into understanding what to expect in these rounds.

What is a SoP?

SMAT score or the student’s resume help the interviewer know about their past achievements, however it doesn’t suffice the need of understanding their interest and need for the management degree, especially in sports management.

The SoP document helps the interviewer in clearly assessing candidate’s career goals and their purpose of doing this course and hence it should have a good balance of their technical abilities and the managerial potential they possess to work in this field.

How to write a SoP?

Unlike a bullet pointed resume, the SoP should have a free-flowing format with key points well emphasized in each of the paragraph. The SoP should cover following points:

  • What is your background?
  • What are your accomplishments in your educational /personal/ professional life?
  • What are your career goals?
  • Why MBA? Why do you feel the need to go for higher education in sport management?
  • What are the additional skills you expect to gain from the course?
  • Why IISM i.e What do you like about the institute?
  • How can IISM help you achieve your goals in sport management?
  • How can your skills contribute to IISM?
  • What are the specific skills that you can bring to the table?
  • Apart from your work and education, what are your hobbies, interests, and habits?
  • How are you like, as a person?
  • What do you understand about our student community and culture?
  • Why do you think you will fit in?
  • What is that one unique aspect/characteristic about you that we should know?
  • Why does it matter to us or to the fellow students of your class?

AGAIN, please understand SoP is NOT a Resume!!! What matters is how and what is written in SoP. It should not be too lengthy for an interviewer and shouldn’t be a time consuming activity for them to read, nor should it be too short, it should be fit well into a perfectly documented statement.

It’s nice to be different but not too flashy, make sure the core of the SoP is not lost in the presentation. The different format of SoP is always welcome if it is giving the interviewer all the information they need in order to know you. It is, simply put, the only document in your application that gives you the opportunity to prove that you have something unique that makes you stand out from the crowd.

Know your SoP

Do not copy a SoP from any of the websites or books or any other references. All the organizations have tools to check the plagiarized content and it is taken as a negative point. Make sure that everything mentioned in SoP is easily justified with your real life examples and experiences

Why Personal Interview?

The personal interview is a critical step in the admissions process and should not be taken lightly; most Post graduate programs will not accept a candidate without meeting him/her in person. A personal interview is aimed at knowing a candidate more intimately – assessing the clarity of thinking process, future goals and the ‘fit’ with the B-School. It provides the admission committee of to evaluate candidate’s interpersonal and soft skills.

The personal interview represents a prime opportunity to put a face and personality to the name and credentials on candidate’s score, application form and SoP, and also helps them he candidates to express their academic, personal, and professional accomplishments, experiences, and intentions of joining the course.

The focus of the interview can vary from educational achievements of the candidates to their hobbies and interest. The personal interview is an opportunity for IISM to question about their SoP, application or even the test scores.

The other major purpose of an personal interview is to learn more about the candidate and also how well the candidate responds and communicates. Interviewer would also like to understand candidate’s values, how they think and how well they handle themselves under pressure. It is their opportunity to convince the interviewer that they are up to the challenge, they are expected to face in future.

Personal Interview stresses on the following areas:

  • Goal Clarity:

    “Why do want to do an MBA? How does it fit into your career goals? What do you wish to do after your MBA?” – These are some difficult questions that candidates will have to answer almost invariably in all Interviews. There is no right answer to these questions. These are the questions that make them introspect about their goal and their future. The only way to tackle these questions is to answer them honestly.

  • Knowledge:

    Given that the sport management is a different program, IISM will definitely like to know how the candidate will be able to cope with academic pressure in a totally different field. Students should be prepared to answer the questions on Sport management as business and the responsibilities. They are also expected to know current issues in sports including the economy, taxation, the role of technology and ethical challenges in the field.

  • Communication Skills :

    Candidate’s speaking and listening skills become very important than the often tested reading and writing skills. As simple as it may sound, good communication strategy is quite simple. Listen to the question keenly to understand it well, and then offer a precise answer. If you don’t know the answer, no bluffing the panel please! The experts are too experienced to notice this and can get switched off.

Hope this information helps in performing better and prepare for the rounds well. In case of any doubts or queries, comment below.

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *