Firstly, a group discussion is meant to evaluate the candidate’s communication skills and how he expresses his thoughts and opinions. Secondly, a group discussion also helps in understanding whether the candidate has sufficient knowledge on the subject matter or the topic of discussion or not. Thirdly, a group discussion is also a test of leadership abilities as it helps in evaluating the candidate’s behavior and whether he is able to lead the group towards a discussion and conversation that is productive or not. Fourthly, a candidate should be a good listener. For if you are a good listener, only then can you provide accurate insight. This also helps in understanding whether the candidate frames his arguments merely based on his knowledge or whether he takes into account the points that have been offered by other members of his group. Fifthly and lastly, the body language of the candidate is also tested when he is a part of a group discussion so it can be evaluated whether he is confident or not. It is often noticed whether the candidate is interested in hearing what others have to say or if he’s just impatient.
What is evaluated in a Group Discussion?
There many parameters on which a Group Discussion is evaluated on. The most popular ones of them are:
It’s critical that you pay attention to your content. Period. What you must provide throughout the continuing debate is noted and demonstrates your understanding abilities. It is not required to speak extensively; quality, rather than quantity, is sometimes more important. Make sure you express your thoughts clearly and firmly, even if you just have 2 minutes to talk. Instead of superfluous blather, the panel wants you to establish a firm foundation. Avoid using words that aren’t relevant.
Every conversation is built on facts, therefore double-check your facts. The panel would like you to investigate the question’s ‘how’ and ‘why.’ Your analytical talents are pushed to the ultimate test, and you are put through the wringer.
A topic necessitates deductive reasoning. The panel wants to see how well you can demonstrate your thinking abilities. Not only with your own argument, but also with how you transform someone else’s argument into your own. It’s more like being in charge of a conversation.
Your argument must be well-structured. It doesn’t matter how many information or data you have if you can’t present them in an orderly manner. Before you open your mouth, think for a moment.
Ability to communicate
Communication skills are important because this is a Group Discussion. How effective are you at communicating? Consider the following question. Are you able to communicate in basic terms that others can comprehend?
Sky used to be purple when we were at school, right? It’s the same way; you coloured the sky your own colour, and now it’s time to colour the debate differently. Consider thinking beyond the box. If everyone else is thinking the same way, consider thinking outside the box. Now that you know how you’ll be evaluated, be sure to focus your practise GDs on particular areas where you can improve. Identify your flaws and attempt to improve them. If you can, hire a trainer or enrol in a programme that will assist you in your preparation.
More importantly, a candidate is evaluated on how the individual listens to others and followups on the points. It is always advised that ones points should not be disjoin from the discussion. Additionally, one should try bringing diverse points on the table.
Skills which can help a candidate to put forth their best foot in Group Discussions and ace the process during their Bschool selection process.
Assertiveness: Being confident, self assured and calm brings out the best candidate.
Reasoning: Logical deductions or critical reasoning are important criteria which a candidate is judged on. Interpreting patterns, identifying the problem statement and finding a proper solution ranks higher in the evaluation.
Thinking: Forming a structured argument, gauging before speaking is an underrated yet quite an appreciable trait.
Team player: Taking the view points of others without interrupting and opting to bring their perspective into the disussion brings out the team player attitude.
Speaking: Ability to hold a well articulated conversation and ability to effectively communicate is very important skill.
Presentation: Candidates ablity to persuade, inspire, inform along with their presenation skills is really looked in their overall performance in a GD.
Creativity: Thinking out of the box and bringing out a creative solution to a problem is a add on for an MBA candidate. An innovative lookout with an ablity to assimlate into real world is a useful skill to posses.
Time management: The discussion time is limited as everyone needs a chance to put forward their point. A well prepared argument with spot on delivery puts the cndidate at a leverage.
Summarizing: Giving concise and summarized version of the entire dicussion is a few lines is always a skill which fetches brownie points.