Group discussion


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Group discussion

  1. 1. Group Discussion Personality Development and Soft Skills Barun K Mitra © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.
  2. 2. Group Discussion Through the medium of a Group Discussion, prospective employers hope to gain insight into a number of characteristic traits of the candidates, that are vital for working in a team and effectively executing tasks in the professional world, and make the right selection. A few important Do’s and Don’ts are discussed here to help candidates prepare themselves. © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.
  3. 3. Group Discussion - Do’s • • • • • • • • • Be alert Listen attentively and take notes Non verbal Communication -Depth/tone of voice -Facial expression, gestures and posture Verbal Communication -Clearly -Correctly -Confidently Be polite Be a team player -Leadership traits -Ability to steer the discussion -Motivate/encourage participation Maintain eye contact Speak only when you have something to contribute © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved. Be flexible
  4. 4. Group Discussion - Don'ts • • • • • • Don’t be arrogant, disrespectful, condescending, dismissive, prudish, etc Don’t monopolize/Dominate the discussion Don’t interrupt Don’t boast Don’t lose temper/get emotional Don’t indulge in peer discussion © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.
  5. 5. Initiating a GD The responsibility of the first speaker - Don’t rush to be the first speaker unless you know the topic very well - If you take on the role of initiator, you should introduce the topic clearly and provide multiple views and arguments to carry the discussion forward - Follow through during the entire discussion is equally important © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.
  6. 6. Group Discussion Situations In the following slides we shall look at some situations where candidates interact in a group discussion and present various personality traits for the selection panel to study and evaluate © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.
  7. 7. SITUATION 1 Picture this situation where one person in the group tries to dominate another. ANURADHA: I don’t think Global Warming is going to kill us all. Those who create rumours, always try to exaggerate the facts. Even in the past predictions have been made about the end of life on this very earth. And what can you do to tackle global warming? Can you stop moving in cars, flying in planes, running industries, using mobiles, air conditioners and all that we cannot survive without? (Looks at a participant sitting on her left and adds) I don’t think what you are saying is practical. I don’t think we need to create such a fuss about global warming. Look how the same argument can be said in a better way: SURBHI: Recently, I read an editorial in The Times of India that global warming may not be as disastrous as it is projected to be. The author had also quoted instances when such predictions were made in the past about bigger disasters but nothing of that sort happened. That, of course, is one point of view. There are others who have a completely different opinion. Therefore, we simply cannot brush aside all this concern in a whiff of over-confidence. I think we need to carefully analyse how drastically we have to change our life-style in order to be able to live up to the demanding adjustments and sacrifices if at all we have to stem the tide. © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.
  8. 8. SITUATION 2 Look how the participant in this situation loses her cool and reacts to her co-participant’s attitude: AMIT: (with a smirk on his face) You know, I agree with all this women’s liberation thing but you see sometimes, women take this liberation thing a little too seriously. I mean, a baby needs her mother more than her father. So, a woman will have to compromise and may be even give up her job after she has a baby. Men can’t give up their jobs and sit at home and take care of babies… it doesn’t help. A participant is shown to be responding by saying this in an intensely emotional and angry tone. She looks very agitated and is seething with anger. PRIYA: You are such a chauvinist (narrows her eyes while saying this). You think children are only the responsibility of the mother and not the father? Tell me, what is wrong if men sit at home and look after babies? You think a woman’s professional career is not important to her. What if she too wants to become rich, famous and important in life? Why should she alone put a break in her career because of the baby? © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.
  9. 9. SITUATION 3  A heated discussion is going on amongst 6 participants: PRIYANKA: Friends, I think India should develop nuclear weapons. All other developed nations have nuclear weapons, why should we be left behind. Jaideep is shown to be saying very softly after participant 5 has finished… JAIDEEP: I think we should…. Surbhi cuts in and very vehemently says: SURBHI: No, I don’t agree. Like I was saying earlier nuclear weapons should be banned. That is the best solution. At this point Anuradha who is concerned that Jaideep had not been allowed to speak says: ANURADHA: Friends, I feel all of us are keen to know what our friend here (extending her hand, palm facing up towards Jaideep), has to say on this issue. Everybody turns to look at Jaideep who then looks gratefully at Anuradha and begins to say his point of view. © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.
  10. 10. Concluding a GD Summing up the discussion - should be an active participant during the discussion - should have been an active listener who took notes capturing the key - points made by the participants—including positions of agreement and disagreement - the conclusion should be a logical one and represent the views articulated by the group - ability to get the buy-in of all members to summarize the group’s views - crisp and succinct communication skills with high degree of clarity © Oxford University Press 2011. All rights reserved.