A popular method of evaluation by most firms is the very intimidating group discussion. Being prepared for GD's can be a tedious task. But to be aware of few points is must. If you're sitting for a group discussion for the first time, it can be very unnerving. Here are some quick tips to help you prepare for one, and keep your calm at the same time:
1. Make sure that you are well read in the days leading up to the group discussion. Read the newspapers everyday, and stay on top of the latest happenings in the field that you are looking at. The moderators of the group discussion will select a random topic and ask you to begin the discussion, often without a leading statement. If you do not know much about the topic of discussion, you will lose confidence before it has even begun.
2. Try to be one of the first few people to speak. If you are confident enough to start the discussion and be the first person, that is the best thing. In this manner, you can steer the conversation in the direction that you want. If you do not start, try to be in the first five speakers. This shows that you are not afraid to stand up and put your opinion across. Furthermore, the more other people speak, the more nervous you will get. Say what you have to say at the start, and wow the moderators with your firm stance.
3. Remember that it is a "discussion", so whatever you say must be relevant to what the people before you have said. It is okay to disagree with someone Ė in fact, this might even set you apart from them. Just make sure that your points are flowing on from where the conversation left off, and do not be offensive or insult someone while disagreeing with them, because you will instantly lose points in the eyes of the recruiter.
4. Be confident. Often, you will be forced to discuss a topic that you do not know too much about, despite preparing in advance. It is important to voice your opinion with a firm voice, so that the recruiter does not feel like you do not know what you are talking about. Confidence is key.
5. Maintain decorum during the discussion. Sit with a proper posture (make sure that your back is straight and your shoulders are back) and do not cut the other speakers off, even if you are itching to talk. This is rude, and will not work well in a business environment either, so you might as well start practicing now. Be concise with your points and try not to ramble, because your main point may get lost if your answer is too verbose.
Also , we should be aware of topics that are repeated. For example the issues of terrorism, gender inequality, poverty, Ayodhya conflict, liberalization and privatization, reservations in educational institutions etc often appear as GD topics.
There are 10 tips to follow for the perfect group discussion.
1. Arrive on time and dress formally. This is not a casual discussion, but one that will help you get a job with a company. You need to look impressive, well groomed and confident.
2. If you have some doubts or want some clarifications on the subject/topic of the discussion, make sure to ask and clear them out before the discussion begins and not after that..
3. Always carry a pen and a notebook. This allows you to refer to what others have said previously.
4. Be yourself and do not be arrogant. Body language is important, so be careful while using gestures and do not ever get aggressive.
5. Initiating the discussion is a major plus point but do so only if you’re very clear about the topic and know a lot about the same.
6. Maintain eye contact with team members and not evaluators. They’re not a part of the discussion. Ensure that you get to speak your point, if the other members hear you, the evaluators will too.
7. Having said that, ensure that you listen as well and appreciate what others are saying. If you do not agree with someone’s point, let them complete and then raise your objection. Do not interrupt.
8. Be positive and do not be over confident.
9. Try and sort out contradictions and arguments. Providing a meaningful direction to the discussion always leaves a good impression on the evaluators.
10. Understand that the aim is not to speak often or for long periods. The aim is to be precise and clear with your points. Ultimately, the discussion has to reach a conclusion and you must strive towards that.
In a Group Discussion , youare expected to contribute meaningfully and help arrive at a consensus. It isnot a platform for you to fight your way through and dominate. Flexibility andgelling with the group is also very important. Makea note of the following points: 1.Arrive on time and dress formally. This is not a casual discussion, but onethat will help you get a job with a company. You need to look impressive, wellgroomed and confident. 2. Ifyou have some doubts or want some clarifications on the subject/topic of thediscussion, make sure to ask and clear them out before the discussion beginsand not after that.. 3.Always carry a pen and a notebook. This allows you to refer to what others havesaid previously. 4.Initiating the discussion is a major plus point but do so only if you’re veryclear about the topic and know a lot about the same. 5.Maintain eye contact with team members and not evaluators. They’re not a partof the discussion. Ensure that you get to speak your point, if the othermembers hear you, the evaluators will too. 6. Bepositive and do not be over confident.
Get plenty of practice:
The more GDs you practice, the better you get. You can refine your style of speaking as well as your thought process with the aid of practice GDs. Practicing GDs also makes you adept at handling different types of situations and ensures that youíre on top of your game when it counts. Practice both case as well as non-case GDs as you never know what the IIMs will spring on you.
Tips on how to crack the GD:
1. Group Discussion is a very important round in any selection process, be it for an MBA course, campus recruitment or for any graduate/post graduate degree. The selection committee conducts GD to gauge whether the candidate has certain personality traits and/or skills that it desires in its members, say for example. 2. Ability to work in a team: You must ensure that the group hears you. If the group hears you, so will the evaluator. 3. Communication skills: You need to be assertive. It depends on you how you steer the group in the right direction, once it gets stuck to something. This gives you the chance to showcase your leadership skills. 4. leadership skills: contribution to the group should be meaningful. Reasoning ability: Be Yourself. Be as natural as possible and donít try to be someone you are not. 5. Take time to organize your thoughts. Seek clarifications. : Donít lose your cool. Show your leadership skills. Practice makes man perfect.
Whatever you do in a GD, your knowledge about the subject can’t be replaced by anything else. You are required to talk in A GD but a talk that doesn’t contain substantial value doesn’t hold any meaning. Be a voracious reader to increase your knowledge on various subjects. T.V., Newspapers, magazines, News portals etc. could be your good sources of knowledge. Alertness and presence of mind
In a GD you are required to carefully listen to the other person’s thoughts and keep an argument, example or a supportive statement, fact, example ready to participate in the discussion. Here comes into picture your alertness and ability to think & act immediately. As you participate in a GD, make sure that you sit with an attentive mind and keep taking down the relevant points put forward by others. Communication
You have a lot of good points to put across but if you can’t communicate them clearly, you won’t stand a chance to impress the evaluators. Practice to communicate in a clear and effective way. Confidence
Your self confidence adds a lot of value to your candidature. Look at every group member as you speak, avoid too much hand movement and looking at evaluators. Leadership and team skills
Your participation in a GD clearly establishes not only your Leadership skills but also your capability to work in a team. To meet the objectives, a good leader has to be a team player.