discussion: Winners' skills
Group discussion is an important dimension of the job selection
process. Any job requires employees to work with others for effective
functioning. Therefore, people skills are an important aspect
of any job. In today's context, the organisations are interested
in team players rather than individual contributors even if they
are excellent performers by themselves.
group discussion evaluate the candidatesí potential to be a leader
and also his/her ability to work in teams.
group discussions are used in the selection process for management
trainees and executive positions. Employers are looking for candidates
who have potential to be executives and to lead teams of people.
how most group discussions work:
groups of 8-10 candidates are formed into a leaderless group,
and are given a specific situation to analyse and discuss within
a given time limit.
may be given a case study and asked to come out with a solution
for a problem.
may be given a topic and are asked to discuss on the same.
panel, which normally comprises the functional and HR executives
of the company will observe and evaluate the members of the group.
is a sample list of skills assessed during a group discussion
to take leadership roles and be able to lead, inspire and carry
the team along to help them achieve groupís objectives.
To be able to initiate the group discussion, or be able to
guide the group especially when the discussion begins losing
relevance or try to encourage all members to participate in
participating candidates will be assessed in terms of clarity
of thought, expression and aptness of language. One key aspect
is listening. It indicates a willingness to accommodate
To be able to use simple language and explain concepts clearly
so that it is easily understood by all.
reflected in the ability of the individual to interact with
other members of the group in a brief situation. Emotional maturity
and balance promotes good interpersonal relationships. The person
has to be more people centric and less self-centered.
remain cool even when someone provokes you by with personal
comment, ability to remain objective, ability to empathise,
non-threatening and more of a team player.
terms of ability to analyse and persuade others to see the problem
from multiple perspectives without hurting the group members.
While appreciating the other personís point of view, should
be able to effectively communicate your view without obviously
contradicting the other person's opinions.
Ability to come out with divergent and offbeat solutions and
uses oneís own creativity.
While thinking of solutions, don't be afraid to think of novel
solutions. This is a high- risk high-return strategy.
ability to grasp the situation, take it from the day to day
mundane problem level and apply it to a macro level.
At the end of the discussion, you could probably summarize the
findings in a few sentences that present the overall perspective.
note of caution Ė Can we acquire all the skills overnight
or can we put up a show?
group discussion is a simulated exercise, where you cannot suddenly
put up a show, since the evaluators will see through you easily.
The purpose of the article is to sensitise you to these issues
so that you can develop yourself with time.