RBI Grade B: 13 Mistakes to Avoid for RBI Grade B Officer Preparation (Part 1)


RBI Grade B exam is one of the most awaited exams of 2021 as it offers great career opportunities. It is no news that the selection for RBI Grade B officer is getting tougher with each passing year because of the increasing awareness about its benefits and perks, while the number of vacancies has almost remained the same. Experience teaches one a lot of things. RBI Grade B exam is a tough nut to crack and requires proper planning and strategy to crack the exam with elevated scores. Many students aspire to enter into RBI, however, in the process of preparing for the RBI Grade B exam they tend to make a few mistakes.

Click here to practice free mock tests for RBI Grade B 

Based on the observations of hundreds of successful and not-so-successful students in the RBI Grade B exam, we have prepared a list of 13 mistakes that you should avoid.

Below are 13 Mistakes you need to avoid for becoming an RBI Grade B officer:

RBI Grade B Preparation
  1. Waiting for the RBI Grade B notification to begin your preparations
  2. Starting the preparation of RBI Grade B Phase 2 first due to lack of awareness
  3. Relying on the current affairs summary for General Awareness
  4. Ignoring the preparation for Descriptive English in Phase 2
  5. Getting nightmares about finance and economics questions  
  6.   Random studies without guidance                                   
  7. Studying voluminous books for Economics, Finance and Management
  8. Undue attention to long tail questions
  9. Getting overwhelmed by the huge syllabus of phase 2
  10. Studying only the topics you like/you are comfortable
  11. Not practicing tough level questions for Phase 2
  12. Time mismanagement in Phase 1 exam
  13. Undermining the importance of General Awareness in Phase 1

Let us look at each one of the RBI Grade B mistakes in detail:

RBI Grade B Mistake 1: Waiting for the RBI Grade B notification to begin your preparations

It is a known fact that champions and winners start preparing and training while others still wait for an auspicious time.

Ask yourself these questions to see whether you are a champion or just a daydreamer:

  • How much time are you giving to the preparation of the exam? Is it less than 50% of the time you would study one month before the exam?
  • Are you attempting mock tests regularly; say at least one test in a week/fortnight?
  • Are you studying General Awareness?

If your answer to the first question is a ‘Yes’ and for the last two questions is ‘No’, then read below to find out the reasons and actionable:

Possible reasonsWhat shall you do?
You are not really serious about this exam.You should stop your preparation. If you are not serious, you will waste your time that can be used for something better in your career and life.
You think that the exam notification is still far away.Think about those 100-200 people who do not think this and are preparing hard for the exam. You will not be able to beat them with this kind of mindset.
You feel that you already have a good grip on certain part of the exam say Phase 1 or Phase 2.Appear in the Mock Tests and check your performance.
You are busy with something else – studies for college exams or other exams.If the studies are helping you in cracking the RBI Grade B exam, continue doing those wholeheartedly. If the activities are not related to studies, come back to studies right now.
There is no one in your friend circle or family who is preparing for the exam and gives you constant reminders and monitors you.Make friends by joining online communities or learning courses. Interact with those from whom you can learn.

RBI Grade B Mistake 2: Starting the preparation of Phase 2 first due to lack of awareness

“Should I start preparation for Phase 2 first??”,  this question might be lingering in your minds many times.

To know the answer, ask yourself the following questions :

  • Are you giving more time for preparation of Phase 2 than Phase 1 Exam?
  • You can do this if you have already cleared Phase 1 in the past or cleared some other exam like IBPS PO, CAT, SSC CGL, else giving more time for Phase 2 would be a huge mistake.
  • Are you attempting Phase 1 Mock Tests for checking your speed and accuracy?
  • Are you spending your majority of time in studying books on Economics, Finance, and Management?
Possible ReasonWhat do you need to do?
You think Phase 1 is easier to clearThe reality is that Phase 1 has tougher competition; out of 2-3 lakhs candidates, 5-6 thousand are selected. You need to realize the need of clearing Phase 1 where you are competing with thousands of those who have cleared IBPS PO and other exams and have got speed and accuracy to score high.
You find the syllabus of Phase 2 more interestingYou shall aim at clearing the exam rather than becoming a champion of either Economics or Financial Management. A balance study of Phase 1 and Phase 2 is the right approach.
You think Phase 2 is the key to crack the RBI Grade B examPhase 2 is important for the final selection however you need to know that Phase 1 is the ladder you need to climb to reach Phase 2 exam.
You have never studied Economics and FinanceThe exam is meant for graduates of all streams; thus, you can clear the exam without any formal education of Economics and Finance. You need to study only from the exam point of view by focussing on the topics in the syllabus and practicing relevant questions.
You find the syllabus of Phase 2 difficultPhase 2 syllabus is diverse and some topics require in-depth understanding. With proper planning and guidance, you can complete the syllabus in 3-6 months depending on your existing level. Have a study schedule, a group to study and ask questions and a mentor to guide and supervise.

RBI Grade B Mistake 3: Ignoring the preparation for Descriptive English in Phase 2

Do you ignore the Descriptive English section while preparing for RBI Grade B Phase 2??

If yes, then answer the below questions:

  • Is my writing effective, does it communicate what it meant for?
  • Do I write correct English?
  • Do I have enough knowledge of the topics I write?
          Possible reason       What needs to be done?
You think your English is goodIf your English is good it will help you but in the exam, you have a very strict word limit so you need to practice expressing in fewer words. Writing is an art that takes time to develop; if you start early you will master it.
You have been preparing for UPSC exam and have a habit of writingPreparing for UPSC gives you strong subject matter knowledge, but remember the test is of English writing skills. You may be strong in knowledge but if you write incorrect English, make mistakes in grammar and punctuation you will lose marks. Expressing in simple words and small sentences is the key to success, which can be learnt by practice.
You plan to prepare for a few topics once you clear the Phase 1 examAfter the Phase 1 exam, in about 20 days you will have a lot to cover on factual information related to economics, banking, and finance. You will have to practice numerical in finance, Union Budget and Economic Survey and study about so many government schemes and management theories. So there will be little time to practice for developing writing skills. For practice you can start writing small blogs, question answers (say on Quora) and others.
Writing does not excite you.This is fine, you are not going to make writing your career but have to learn writing essay, précis, application and letter to score high. You can write one page in a week and get it evaluated by your friends, seniors, teachers or anyone who can help you; it will be an excellent development. For the exam, you have to write to-the-point, so it’s not writing literature.
You don’t find a teacher or guide who can help you.If there is no one who can review your work, write in the public medium such as online blogs. Views, comments, and shares from the readers will let you know the truth. Write on the topics of General Awareness which are relevant for the exam.

RBI Grade B Mistake 4: Getting nightmares about finance and economics questions  

Are you getting nightmares on the thought of Finance and Economics?

This is the case with most of the aspirants from non-finance and non-economic backgrounds. But in reality, these sections can be really scoring and can be prepared by anyone.

If you observe any of the following symptoms in your behavior then the tips in this email will be useful to you.

Symptoms you need to observe:

  • You do not like reading a business newspaper.
  • You consider finance and economics as dry subjects.
  • Finance seems very technical to you.
Possible reasonWhat shall you do?
You have never studied Finance and Economics.This is the reality with most of the students preparing for RBI Grade B exam. Don’t worry, start step by step as per the given syllabus. The best way to start is by reading business news and looking for the definition of terms that you are not able to understand.
You feel that the terminology of Finance and Economics is complex.While studying newspaper and other articles you will find many terms that you will not understand properly. Google for the explanation of these terms and understand the practical use. If still not clear, you shall discuss these terms with someone who knows Economics and Finance.
You do not find any suitable book to cover the syllabus. There is no single book that covers all the topics well enough for the exam. You may have to read a few books by being selective in studying for the topic as mentioned in the syllabus, don’t read any book cover to cover. First, understand general things and then go into the depth of the topic.
Complex Finance terms and Numerical takes all your motivation away.For the RBI Grade B exam, you really do not need to be an expert in Economics and Finance. You need to learn the concept as required for the exam. Every year you may find 2-3 questions that require the understanding of high-level finance but that shall not make you worried. You can easily skip some 10% questions in the exam to focus on 90% of the questions that you need to answer and study for that.

RBI Grade B Mistake 5: Random studies without guidance                                     

Great warriors and great achievers also have a guide or coach. Focusing your energy is a must for achieving extraordinary goals. Clearing all India level competitive exam, therefore, requires your concentrated efforts. Random studies and non-directional efforts result in a waste of time and energy. You need to observe that you are not wasting your efforts.

Symptoms you need to observe

  • You keep on changing your study material.
  • You surf the internet searching for study material from various resources.
  • You are a member of various chat groups on WhatsApp and Telegram trying to understand the best books and other relevant study material.
Possible reason What shall you do?
You do not know the strategy to clear the examRead/ listen to the strategy of successful candidates.
Your score is not improving in the practice testsOnly practice tests are not enough to improve, you need to build your fundamentals. Find out the resources that will help in improving your learning.
You change your study plan again and againFirst understand the goal you need to reach and the level you are at now. Plan to bridge this gap by a reasonable study plan.

For performing some of the above activities you will need guidance from mentors and successful candidates those who have traveled this path successfully. Your friends preparing for the same exam can also be helpful if they have acquired more learning than you have.

The syllabus of the exam is very exhaustive and the internet is full of information that will confuse you more. Therefore, it is a must that you get guidance from those who know more and will help you through your journey.

RBI Grade B Mistake 6: Preparing all alone for the exam

Symptoms you need to observe

  • Do you feel no one is there with whom you can share your queries?
  • You don’t know what kind of issues other people are facing in the preparation and how are they solving their problems.
  • You are looking for help and motivation from friends but you are not getting
Possible reason What shall you do?
There is no one in your neighborhood or college who is preparing for RBI Grade BThere are online communities on Facebook and Telegram you can join and get to know more people. However, do not waste time chatting on unnecessary things but focus on discussion related to studies.
The other candidates you know are not as committed for the preparation as you are.Company of Non-serious candidates will waste your time, so better to avoid them as you can find sincere and hardworking candidates online.
The other candidates you know are not knowledgeable.If they are sincere and committed this will still be a better company than no one around. You can divide the topics and teach one another.

In other’s company, you will be able to look at the same problem in different ways which will help you in the real exam. Being in touch with other candidates will help you to be on your toes and avoid procrastination. Every day of your preparation is important and the company of motivated individuals will ignite more fire in you to crack the exam.


You have read about 7 mistakes of the 13 mistakes you need to avoid while preparing for RBI Grade B. Stay tuned to our Blogs section to read about the rest of the mistakes. Prepare for RBI Garde B in a smart manner by trying to avoid the above mistakes. You can also prepare for NABARD Grade A exam through NABARD Grade A practice papers since the syllabus is 70% similar to RBI.

Also Read:

In- Hand Salary of an RBI Grade B Officer

RBI Grade B Descriptive Writing Skills

What is it like to be an RBI Grade B officer?

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