Group Discussion (GD) is an important part of the selection process for admission to top business schools. Opinions and thoughts are exchanged and debated upon in a GD. The candidates are divided into groups and each group is assigned a subject for discussion. The idea behind GD is to assess leadership, communication, listening, interactive, analytical, and decision making skills of the candidate. Here are some top things that can make you perfect for the Group Discussion (GD):
- Prepare well: More often than not, GDs are based on subjects like gender inequality, reservations in educational institutions, terrorism, poverty, privatization and liberalisation. Preparing these subjects before you appear for GD will give you an edge over others.
- Dress formally: Opt for formal and comfortable dressing for GD. No casual or fancy wear. Your dressing infuses positivity in your speaking that comes across quite evidently during the discussion.
- Initiate the discussion: Initiating the discussion is the perfect way to gain attention provided you have understood the subject properly and possess sufficient knowledge about it. Once you get the subject, note down points around which you would want to structure the debate. Setting off without understanding the subject is a big NO.
- Maintain eye contact: It is important to maintain an eye contact with your group members. This helps to form a connection between you and the members and also lets you put your points across more convincingly. Avoid gazing at the assessors while expressing your views.
- Be confident: Positive and confident demeanour is a must for GD. Your body language conveys a lot so maintain a positive stance and prove your interest in the subject. Avoid any attempt to dominate group members.
- Let other speak: Do not interject while others are speaking. Even though you disagree with their view, you must never interrupt. Instead, jot down points and clarify your opinion when your turn comes.
- Be simple and clear: Speak clearly and use simple and comprehensible words while talking. Express your opinion politely and calmly without turning aggressive in case you disagree with somebody.
- Steer the discussion on the right track: If the discussion has lost track or the group has digressed from the subject then steer the discussion on the right track. Ensure that members understand that you all must arrive at a conclusion to close the discussion so simply hold on to the subject.
- Talk logically: You must not fret about increasing your speaking duration. Even if you say less, just be relevant and sensible. Dragging your point and talking irrelevantly will not help.
- All ears to others: GD tests your listening skills too so make sure you listen more and speak less. Paying attention when other members are speaking will keep you involved in the discussion.
- Avoid going into minutiae: It is sufficient to do a basic analysis of the subject but there is no need to quote exact data while making any reference. As GDs are time bound, keeping it simple and short will be just perfect. Your precise thoughts on the subject are more important rather than the minute details.
- Last man standing: Bringing the discussion to a conclusion and ending it is an added advantage. Try summarizing the discussion and articulate a conclusion that you and members arrived at.
Succeeding in a GD is as important as clearing the competitive exam. With adequate control you can manoeuvre the discussion and reach to a conclusion. It’s just like driving a car! Hand on steering, push the accelerator and hit the brakes when needed. Be the conscientious driver and drive the discussion in your stride.
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