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Group discussion tips

The Career Enrich team shares with you some tips to give you the edge during your group discussion.

  • Be as natural as possible. Do not try and be someone you are not. Be yourself so the employer gets to know the real you.

  • A group discussion is your chance to be more vocal. The point of interest to the evaluator is to hear you speak.

  • Take time to think of what you are going to say - if allowed, take a piece of paper and a pen with you and jot down your thoughts, before verbalising them. This could help you create the right framework for your discussion.

  • If you have any doubts regarding the subject or about what another team member has said, ask for clarification.

  • Don't start speaking until you have clearly understood and analysed the subject.

  • Work out various strategies to help you make an entry: initiate the discussion or agree with someone else's point and then move onto express your views.

  • Do not be swayed when you are told that opening the discussion is the only way of gaining attention and recognition. If you do not give valuable insights during the discussion, all your efforts of initiating the discussion will be in vain.

  • The score you receive depends not only on your verbal communication, but also on non-verbal skills. Your body language says a lot about you - your gestures and mannerisms are more likely to reflect your attitude than what you say.

  • Language skills are important only to the effect as to how you get your points across clearly and fluently.

  • Be assertive not dominating; try to maintain a balanced tone in your discussion and analysis.

  • Be patient; don't lose your cool if anyone says anything you object to. The key is to stay objective: Don't take the discussion personally.

  • Always be polite: Try to avoid using extreme phrases like: `I strongly object' or `I disagree'. Instead try phrases like: `I would like to share my views on…' or `One difference between your point and mine…'

  • Brush up on your leadership skills; motivate the other members of the team to speak, and listen to their views. Be receptive to others' opinions and do not be abrasive or aggressive.

  • If you have a group of like-minded friends, you can have a mock group discussion where you can learn from each other through giving and receiving feedback.

Apart from the above points, the panel will also judge team members for their alertness and presence of mind, problem-solving abilities, ability to work as a team without alienating certain members, and creativity.

Don’t be disheartened if you don't make it after your first group discussion… the best possible preparation for a group discussion is to learn from your past mistakes…

Also Checkout

Group discussion: Winners' skills

How to handle group discussions

Group discussions: Learning from mistakes

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