Employee 2 Owner

Group Discussion – An Introduction | March 20, 2013

Group Discussion like an interview is essentially a conversation, not as some consider, an argument. You could find yourself in a group discussion situation any where- informally in your club or peer group, talking casually about a film you liked, a hobby you pursue or a passion you have; or you could be a part of a formal group in your organization where you might be discussing some very important business strategy or trouble shooting. Most job seeking individuals, though, have come to associate GD with the methodology designed by employers to ascertain certain personality traits and skills like initiative, ability to work in a team, communication skills, reasoning ability, leadership skills, assertiveness and the ability to get along with other people, in a candidate.

At the root of acquiring proficiency in Group Discussion lies a basic understanding of the common sense rules of conversation skills. Speech is not the only way of expression but it certainly is a very important form of communication. Every time we speak, we reveal something about ourselves to someone else – not just in what we say, but how we say it.

So the number one guideline for effective conversation is to speak clearly and speak sincerely. If what you have to say is important to others you will never have to shout to be heard. Learn to make yourself heard without shouting, interrupting or talking over others. Empathy is the word. If you put others before your self you will never have problem being heard. Say what you think and how you feel, but say it without hurting others’ feelings. Unless we hone our conversation skills we will never be good at group discussions.

Some conversation do’s and don’ts:

Conversation DO’S

  • Look at the person or people you are talking to. The person who is worth talking to is worth looking at.
  • If you haven’t met before, introduce yourself and ask their name.
  • Use the person’s name when talking to him. The sweetest sound to people’s ears is the sound of their own name.
  • Ask questions to clarify when you don’t understand something
  • Stick to the subject
  • Pay compliments. Say nice things to people. Say nice things about them. Recognise people for their achievements – even small achievements.
  • Be very polite when you disagree with people.

Conversation DON’Ts

  • Don’t look away from the person you are talking to
  • Don’t listen in on conversations you aren’t a part of
  • Don’t interrupt when someone else is talking
  • Don’t squeal, tattletale, brag, or say mean things about others just because they are absent
  • Don’t ask personal questions such as how much things cost or why someone looks or dresses the way she does
  • Don’t point or stare
  • Don’t argue about insignificant things

Some words you could do well to use in your conversation

  • “Thank You”
  • “Please”
  • “May I … “
  • “Excuse Me”
  • “I’m Sorry”

…And some blunders we must avoid in conversation

  • Don’t use pet words unless they are suitable to the topic or the situation. Words like ‘dude’, ‘darling’, ‘fabulous’, ‘lousy’, ‘s***’,  ‘how cute’, amazing’
  • Don’t use big words and phrases, just for the sake of using big words like ‘resplendently beautiful’; ‘let us rendezvous today’, ‘create conversations that empower you’, ‘magnanimous’, ‘deduce’ etc. They make you sound too pompous, conceited and boastful.
  • Don’t exaggerate.
  • Don’t get personal
  • Don’t use too much slang

Check out employee2owner‘s Workshop on Communication and Workshop on Effective Communication/Interpersonal Skills

Group Discussion related articles

Group Discussion  – An integral part of the job interview process

The O-P-P Strategy

Discussion Etiquette

Preparing for Group Discussion

The Importance of Listening in Group Discussion

Speaking in Group Discussion

Leading a Discussion

Initiating a Group Discussion (Recruitment Scenario)

Important Aspects of Group Discussion

Task Roles in Group Discussion

A to Z of Discussion… and more

Tips to Improve your GD Skills

FAQs About Recruitment GD

Topics for Group Discussion


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