Career Planning in Job Market – Group Discussion

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Career Planning in Job Market – Group Discussion – Page 2

The modern employer is not content with the convention process of selecting candidates by studying their resume and screening their performance in interviews as he knows that these methods hardly through light on two vital traits of the candidates – personality features and inter personal skills.

No doubt, the candidates may speak about them and even produce documentary evidence to strengthen their claims.

But the employer would rather prefer to watch these traits personally, involving them in group discussion.

Hence group discussion has now become a tool for evaluating the candidate’s ability to be a leader and his talent as a team player.

Group Discussion – Misconceptions :

A group discussion never be mistaken for a debate in which the participants forcefully put forth their views and prevent others from expressing their ideas.

They even contradict other persons unreasonably to seek the ideas.

They even contradict other persons unreasonably to seek the applause and appreciation of the audience.

It is advisable that they should never be aggressive and overtly make certain impolite and extreme statements. eg. ‘I strongly object’, ‘you are absolutely wrong’. I don’t agree with you.

Such a dictatorial attitude affects the free flow of a group discussion. The success of a group discussion depends largely on the cooperative mood of the members.

Group Discussions – How it Works  :

The candidates appearing for an interview are involved in a group discussion. The group may have 5 to 10 or A, B, C etc.

The members are asked not to address their group mates by names but by numbers or alphabets. They are given to topic for discussion and left free to discuss it an arrive at a consensus.

It is a panel of judges that conducts the group discussion. They observe the performance of each participant closely and evaluate it.

The discussion begins with the chief evaluator addressing the group for two or three minutes and may even be spelling out the criteria of evaluation.

The group is initially leaderless and during the discussion, whoever has the ability emerges as the leader.

As a first step, you have to think about the given topic for sometime and decide whether you would like to speak for or against the subject and then jot down a few points on which you would focus during the discussion.

You should also try to build a consensus among the participants may pull in different directions. However, your earnest attempt towards unanimity will be given due credit.

There are persons who complain that they could not get a chance to speak. The point is that every participant has stake in the discussion and will go all out to impress the evaluators with his or her views and line of argument.

You have to adopt a suitable strategy to attract the attention of others and make them listen to you.

Group Discussion Strategies :

You should have a complete grasp of the subject knowledge and be adept in the art of positive argument and also be a persuasive communicator. Secondly, you should attempt to resolve the Contradiction, paving the way for an effective consensus and thus carry the participants with you.

Above all, your contribution should be meaningful. It is the quality or relevant talk that matters and not the frequent interruptions and long winding and loud talk.

If you assume the de facto leadership of the group, you may meet with stiff resistance from other members. Hence you have to be extremely careful and assess your support in the group and then take up the role of a leader.

Another issue, is ‘should you be the first speaker?’ If you feel that the topic of discussion is simple and your cup of tea you can seize the opportunity to initiative the discussion.

You will get the maximum uninterrupted airtime and the evaluators usually observe the first speaker with great interest and attention and you will also get the opportunity of taking the group in the right direction.

Suppose, as an opening speaker, you don’t speak sensibly, you will get the undivided attention of the evaluators to your flaws and pitfalls. Hence speaking first. is fraught with high-risk and high-gain consequences.

Finally, your grade depends not only on your verbal communication but nonverbal skills as well. Your body language like expressions, eye contact and movement of your hand is sure to fetch a favourable score.