Successful Group Discussion Tips


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This presentation is based on Chapter 2 - Successful Group Discussion of the 17 part Group
Discussion series provided by In this presentation you will learn about
various factors that influence the success of any group discussion such as discussion goals,
topic selection, time management, multiple perspectives, conflict management and openended

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Successful Group Discussion Tips

  1. 1. Group Discussion TrainingVideo 2: Successful Group DiscussionWelcome to Group Discussion Self-Study TrainingIn the previous chapter 1 of this series, you learnt how to discuss in a group. You alsolearnt about discussing a topic with several aspects such as:Identifying the goal of group discussion.Identifying soft-spoken members and outspoken membersLearning to discuss in smaller groupsLearning to handle quiet membersLearning to connect between group membersLearning to ask questionsNow, let us go thro the 2nd chapter titled “Successful Group Discussion”.1
  2. 2. This presentation is based on Chapter 2 - Successful Group Discussion of the 17 part GroupDiscussion series provided by In this presentation you will learn aboutvarious factors that influence the success of any group discussion such as discussion goals,topic selection, time management, multiple perspectives, conflict management and open-ended questions.Before I delve into the factors influencing the success of a group discussion, I would like todraw your attention once again to the basic objective of group discussion. As mentioned inmy previous presentation of chapter 1, the objective of group discussion is to provide anopportunity for every member of the group to present their idea and information that isrelevant to the topic. In relation to this core objective, there are few important factors thatcan influence the outcome of a group discussion. Let us now go thro some of these crucialfactors.2
  3. 3. To ensure that your group discussion succeeds in its objective, you need to make sure thatthe goal of the group discussion is well-defined and is followed till the end.Generally, the goal of any group discussion is to narrow down the list of ideas to a few thatare best or most beneficial to the issue on hand that is being discussed.In order to pick the best among discussed ideas, you can ask the group to vote on thestrategy they think is the best.Each idea can be given a voting percentage and the end result will give you best strategies.Thus a well-defined group discussion goal will ensure that you will ultimately get the beststrategies among all the ideas that were discussed by the group.3
  4. 4. The selection of group discussion topic is crucial for the success of the group as well.Generally the topic is chosen by the group leader.By selecting the topics that is relevant to issue on hand the members are asked questionsand are expected to answer individually.With the selection of an apt topic, the leader is bound to extract several ideas, strategiesand options from each and every group member.During discussion, open-ended questions that are associated with the chosen topic arealways recommended.You must also remember that during brainstorm sessions, open-ended questions are thebest to generate ideas throughout the group.Thus with a selection of the right topic and by discussion it with relevant open-endedquestions, you can extract the best solution for the issue on hand for which the groupdiscussion was originally conducted.4
  5. 5. For the group discussion to succeed, one must never forget to ask open-ended questions.Open ended questions are the soul of group discussion and does not have one definiteanswer.By asking open-ended questions to the group you can extract maximum response from themembers.It is important to allow members to think amongst each other and after which, memberscan come up with their own strategy to the issue that is being discussed.For example – an open ended question would appear as “What strategies do you think ourcompany can use to successfully market this product?”As you can see from this example, open ended questions provides boundless options forthe group members to explore and put forth their views and opinions thereby contributingtowards successful group discussion.5
  6. 6. Timing the discussion is important to achieve the set goal of the group discussion. Thelength of a group discussion is generally set before the meeting begins.It is important to allow the members enough time to brainstorm a variety of ideas. Inabsence of proper time management, too many and also un-relevant ideas could getprominence and relevant ideas may get missed out.You need to make sure that each person gets an opportunity to present their own ideas sothey are not left out.After a certain amount of time the next member then takes a turn presenting the ideas tothe group.By proper time management, every member gets an opportunity to put forth theirthoughts, ideas and concepts there by providing maximum coverage for the topic beingdiscussed.6
  7. 7. Multiple Perspective discussion is one of the important ingredients for a successful groupdiscussion.It pays to make sure that the given topic is discussed from different points of view.Multiple perspectives are very beneficial for companies and organizations because theygain perspective from several views on the subject that is being discussed.Members can share their own experiences and ideas while perspectives builds throughoutthe discussion.Thus by gaining ideas, views and concepts from the each and every group member, thecompany will finally be able to make a strategic decision.7
  8. 8. Conflicts are bound to arise in a group during discussion and it is very important to knowthe art of conflict management so that the group discussion does not go haywire.If a member decides to promote their own individual view on the topic without evenconsidering the ideas given by the other members then it will neither be good notbeneficial for the group.The ideas that members come up with should help the group as a whole, not individually.Group discussion is not a competition to see who has the best ideas.The primary goal is to keep the members’ best interests in mind as a group by each personcoming up with ideas that contribute to the discussion.8
  9. 9. Finally, after all the discussions and selection of suitable strategies you need to create apros and cons section for each idea.After creating the section, allow each member to present their take on the advantages anddisadvantage to each strategy.Compare the ideas and select the one which outweighs the others.You can place a final vote and choose the best strategy that has the largest percentage ofpros and advantages.As you can see, this is a powerful strategy which is simple to use and makes sure that thebest strategy for the issue on hand is drawn out as a result of discussion. Thereby bringingthe group discussion to its logical end.9
  10. 10. You have now reviewed some of the important factors that contribute for the success ofany group discussion. By following the above suggested factors you can ensure that thediscussion concludes logically as well as beneficially to the members as well as to theorganization to handle any issue or to draw up the most appropriate strategy.This concludes the second chapter of the Group Discussion training series. The nextchapter titled “Why Prepare for Group Discussions?” elaborates on the importance ofpreparing ahead of time for group discussions and how it will impact on the outcome ofthe discussion at the end.You can read more on this series at exforsys.comThank you for watching this presentation.10