Group Discussions (GDs) are conducted by many companies to pick the top candidates. They have become part of selection process for admission into Business schools and other management and engineering institutions. Usually GD is the next step in the selection process after the written exam.
Why are GDs conducted?
While the entrance exam tests your knowledge on subject, a GD is used to test your soft skills and your ability to cope with various situations. The institutes or the companies as per their requirement look for specific traits in the candidates and select the best among the lot. Some of the personality traits include skills in team building, reasoning, analysis, logic, decisiveness, initiation, leadership and assertiveness.
You want to excel in a GD and cannot imagine being eliminated after all!
How do you face a GD?
The preparation for a GD is not just limited to subject knowledge. It requires a structured approach that can be shown in four steps.
Step 1 – Prepare well by reading a lot on various topics such as current affairs, art, literature, sports or any other topics related to the situation. Be aware of topics that are repeated. Remember some important data related to the topics to support your views during discussion. It can create an impression among the evaluators. Practice your speech before mirror. Focus on body language and the tone of your voice. The more you read and practice the lesser fears you’ll have. Dress appropriately on the day of GD.
Step 2 – Understand the given topic well. Write down your points and when the GD begins, listen carefully and note down others’ points. Be clear in your thoughts and let your views be relevant and precise. If possible, initiate the GD and gain everyone’s attention. You can cite a quote, talk about facts and statistics or make a general statement to create interest. If you have not initiated the GD, then try to enter GD during low times. You can make a supportive or appreciative statement for the last point and then continue with your views. Do not stammer or quote wrong facts. Present logical points that give the right direction to a GD.
Step 3 – Be in control of the discussion. For this, you need to keenly follow everyone’s speech and try to pitch in wherever relevant. Do not force your points. For any disagreement, be balanced and present yourself with more valid points. It will showcase your knowledge as well as listening skills and assertiveness. Keep eye contact with everyone in the group. If someone has not presented his or her views, ask that person to speak up. This will showcase your team player skills.
Step 4 – At the end of GD, take everyone’s points and make a meaningful conclusion. This will showcase your analytical skills and your ability to structure thoughts.
Finally, visualize yourself outshining and you will definitely succeed. All the best!