Do’s And Don’ts of a Group Discussion (GD) For Top MBA Colleges

Published on : 30th October 2021    Author : Himanshu Basant Bhatt
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Group Discussion forms a crucial stage in the admission process of top B-schools. Apart from knowledge, you are evaluated on the basis of your communication and group skills. Group Discussion (GD), following a written test, is an important part of the final selection process for admission in professional courses, especially MBA programmes. Clearly, a winning performance at this stage is critical to making the final cut.

GDs for MBA admission are based on a variety of topics ranging from economics to business to current affairs, etc., so it’s important to keep yourself updated by developing the habit of reading newspapers and magazines. A good grip on general knowledge will give you the confidence to talk on any topic and improve your articulation. Here in this article, we have discussed the major do’s and don’ts of a group discussion, which one need to know and follow them at the time of GD round.


What is a Group Discussion (GD) and how is it Helpful?

Group Discussion or GD is an activity where a group of individuals put forward their viewpoints on a particular topic. The main purpose of a Group Discussion is to evaluate the candidates’ ability based on various skills such as subject knowledge, communication skills and aptitude to perform in a group or team. It provides a platform for students to go fearless, shed away shyness and improve their vocal. Moreover, it helps candidates open the doors of knowledge by exchanging ideas and opinions.

What Does a Group Discussion (GD) Evaluate?

Colleges and companies conduct Group Discussions (GD) round to evaluate an individual on the following aspects –

  • Communication skills
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Motivational Skills
  • Leadership Skills
  • Team Building Skills
  • Reasoning ability
  • Analytical /Logical Skills
  • Initiative
  • Different Thinking
  • Flexibility
  • Assertiveness
  • Creativity
  • Ability to Think Instantly

Group Discussion for MBA Admissions

Group Discussion (GD) is an important part of the final selection procedure of various competitive entrance examinations such as management, medical, engineering, banking, armed forces, etc. In this article, we have covered GD round for admission to MBA courses. However, these tips can be used for any group discussion that candidates would likely to take part in. Although the Group Discussion round has been replaced by the WAT round in most of the IIMs, it forms an important part of the final admission procedure in many B-Schools. In most Business Schools, Group Discussions are conducted amongst a group of 8-10 participants and a situation or a topic is given to them for discussion within a time limit. A panel observes the discussion and evaluates every member of the group.

Group Discussion: Do’s and Don’ts

Do’s

Don’ts

  • Address the group with dignity and respect
  • Stick to the professional etiquettes
  • The first entry should be well-planned
  • Enter the discussion with a strategic input
  • Understand the difference between initiating and beginning the discussion
  • Organise your thoughts before speaking
  • Be yourself
  • Be a good listener
  • Put your views in an easy to understand the language
  • Be receptive to others’ thoughts and opinions
  • Establish eye contact with others (key participants)
  • Don’t overlook the passive participants completely
  • Strong voice, correct usage of grammar, clear diction and good language
  • Constructive arguments
  • Accept counter arguments gracefully
  • Be a good learner
  • React to others in a positive way and acknowledge the preceding before putting forth your opinion
  • Show good interpersonal skills
  • Give facts and figures to support your viewpoint
  • To conclude, sum up the discussion with some key points
  • Show a well-maintained disposition
  • Don’t be an impulsive participant
  • Don’t initiate a conversation without solid planning
  • Don’t repeat any point unless it is highly required
  • Don’t use a dominating tone
  • Don’t take anything personally
  • Don’t lose your cool
  • Don’t object without a solid reason
  • Attributes such as arrogance, overaggressive, loud, etc. should be avoided
  • Don’t carry negative energy or attention
  • Don’t show poor interpersonal skills
  • Don’t give all the attention to the main participants. Give equal attention to others as well
  • Don’t deviate from the main topic
  • Don’t ask stupid questions without a base
  • Don’t get involved in cross discussions if the main topic is being discussed
  • Don’t violate the essence of the discussion
  • Avoid futile discussions or unnecessary arguments
  • Don’t come to the discussion with improper attire
  • Don’t shout or scream to provide your viewpoint
  • Don’t over gesticulate
  • Don’t interrupt others (their private space) while making your points
  • Don’t breach the code of conduct

Keep these points in mind and practice the mock group discussions with friends to boost your confidence.

Other Major Point To Follow While Appearing For Group Discussion

  • Dress Formally - Dressing helps make the first impression and determines one’s personality – so do not take it casually. Dress smartly in a formal outift for GD and PI round. It will add to your confidence and keep you comfortable while speaking in a group. Positive gestures and body language will make your work easier.
  • Don’t Rush Into It - Initiating the GD is a big plus. But it works in your favour only when you understand the GD topic. If you are not sure about the topic, take your time, take a cue from others and then frame your argument. It will help you appear more measured when you speak and bring out your analytical skills.
  • Allow Others to Speak - Do not interrupt others during the GD. Even if you don’t agree with their thoughts do not snatch their chance to speak. Instead make a mental note and state your points when it’s your turn. This will show that you are not desperate to blow your own trumpet and are mindful of other people’s opinion.
  • Speak Sensibly - Do not speak just to increase your speaking time. Don’t worry even if you speak less but do not try to beat around the bush. Your thoughts should be sensible and relevant. Wasting the group’s time with your irrelevant speech or speaking without proper subject knowledge will only create a poor impression.
  • Listen Carefully to Others - Being a good listener is an important skill to succeed in group discussions. Pay attention when others speak. This will encourage coherent discussion and you will get involved in the group positively. That way, others are also more likely to be receptive to your points.
  • Avoid Time-Consuming Details - A basic subject analysis is sufficient. There’s no need to mention exact figures and statistics while making a reference. You have limited time in a GD, so be precise and convey your thoughts in a smart and crisp manner.
  • Keep the Discussion on Track - If you find the group is digressing from the topic or goal then simply take the initiative to bring the discussion back on track. Uphold and emphasize the group’s common objective to stick to the topic to arrive at some conclusion at the end of the group discussion. This will exhibit your leadership skills.

Hope, this article helps you and provides the informative Group Discussion guide to make your GD round successful.

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