Meet the MBA Class of 2023: Nalin Sharma, IIM Lucknow

Nalin Sharma

IIM Lucknow

“I am a believer, an optimist, driving enthusiast, an aspirant for life-long learning and a reading aficionado.”

Hometown: Jaipur, Rajasthan    

Fun Fact About Yourself: The voyage of life has led me to drive more than 2 lac kms and travel across 302 cities. where I received an opportunity to meet and work with a wide array of people from different walks of life, academic disciplines, cultural backgrounds and professional competencies.

Undergraduate School and Major: Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, Civil Engineering.

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Indian Oil Corporation Limited, Manager (Engineering), Head Office.

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of IIM Lucknow’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? International Program in Management for Executives offered by IIM Lucknow is one of the best 1-year full-time MBA programs in the country. The course content, pedagogy and the whole experience complements and hones one’s skill-set to be industry-ready for the higher responsibilities and upgraded profiles.

The academic fervor and activities that the institute offered intrigued me a lot to undertake this course. The course curriculum and content provide a balanced-mix of academic learning and case-based pedagogy aids deeper understanding and facilitates one to become a driving agent for change

Further, the design and structure of the International Immersion module of IPMX drew my attention in particular. The module is amongst the best crafted programs across the academia and provides a holistic view of intricate working and culture of the international organizations across geographies. The learning we were expected to undergo during the module were unparalleled. Having a brief exposure of working in Europe during my internship in graduation, I was particularly interested in reinforcing my experiential learnings in a structured manner.

What has been your favorite course or extracurricular activity at IIM Lucknow? My journey at IOCL has offered me unique challenges, which have contributed tremendously to my growth in many aspects. I led over 200+ different projects related to various domains in varied geographies. They involved a wide diversity of stakeholders ranging from farmers to highly professional individuals. However, being the Class Representative of IPMX has presented a unique and novel challenge that I had never encountered. Managing a group of highly professional, accomplished professionals is a daunting task and was unlike any other that I had previously undertaken in my career.

This particular responsibility allowed me to grow outside my comfort zone and develop a deeper understanding of the world and become a better individual.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Skill enhancement and in-house talent development are crucial for any organization and much more for the PSUs, wherein the attrition rate is very low. Apart from my core job of project management, I was chosen to be the part of initial team to spearhead the development of domain-based e-learning modules for the in-house employees. My team and I developed the highest number of modules for the corporation in the initial period. Further, apart from the module development, I tested and completed 500+ modules leading to award of Appreciation Certificate by the Chairman and Director (HR) of the corporation.

Describe your biggest accomplishment as an MBA student so far: IPMX is a highly professional and accredited program revered and sought after by vast majority of aspirants throughout industry. It takes the students through a life transforming journey. The sheer talent and capabilities of the cohort can be very daunting at times. The challenges the program poses develop an individual’s inner strengths to undertake the real-world challenges efficiently. My core competencies and perseverance developed multi-fold during the last 5 months in this course as I aced the academics and secured highest grade in the first term while pursuing the extra-curriculars simultaneously.

What is your class’s favorite hangout away from school? Why do you gather there? There is a wide spectrum of hangout places within the campus – Night Canteen, Badminton Court and Waghbakri Tea Stall wherein we gather to eat, connect, celebrate and bond. Students forge relationships of lifetime at these joints.

However, for the enthusiasts the beautiful NH-334 is always open and places like Haridwar and Rishikesh are mere 2-3 hours away – “Travel opens your heart, broadens your mind, and fills your life with stories to tell.”

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation?  Before joining the course, my professional experience has been confined only to Project Management. Working for more than 11 years in the corporation and gaining expertise in project management, it was the perfect time for me to obtain structured learning in management so that I can opt for more impactful roles in the energy sector for realizing a sustainable growth.

In these rapidly-changing times in the energy sector, the corporations are aiming towards optimizing their resource portfolios with embracing and developing smart goals for the energy transition. Partnerships between O&G corporations and tech companies have already become increasingly common. The corporations are aiming towards creating a new charter by recreating their business profile, diversifying their work approach, establishing expertise in the low-carbon space, and exerting more control over their sustained growth.

Reinforced with the structured learning provided in IPMX, I aim to transcend myself into the roles of strategy and planning to propel IOCL to realize its vision and mission.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into IIM Lucknow? The program is designed for mid and senior level professionals to prepare you for top positions in industry roles. The essence of program is derived from the experiential learnings that one brings to the class. It is pertinent that you have a clear focus and understanding of your goals and of your will to do an MBA everything else shall fall into place.


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