Today, group discussions are being given a lot of importance and there is a reason for this. Group discussions allow you to know loads about your candidates’ managerial abilities, his decision making skills, his leadership abilities can all be judged through a group discussion.
Companies prefer to lay more importance on such communication techniques as a judging criterion than to rely on written examinations. Hence, we should be aware of the pros and cons to a group discussion.
Here are some important methods one could practice for a successful group discussion:
Maintaining Eye Contact
It is always important to maintain eye contact while speaking at a group discussion. Eye contact not only shows your confidence level but also helps you to take control of the situation. It is not necessary to look at the moderator alone you can also make eye contact with your fellow participants.
The person who starts the discussion is always at an advantage. He gets to steer the direction of the conversation-and you must try to be this person. However, you should only take the lead if you have understood the topic of the discussion. Providing wrong information on the topic will not get you far.
Allow Others to Speak
You should remember that it is a group discussion; hence everyone involved should be given a chance to speak. Cutting short participants is a poor decision and should be avoided. If you have conflicting point of opinion then you can raise such issues when you get your chance to speak.
While participating in a group discussion you should always be positive in your approach. You should always remember that in a group discussion the possibility of a conflict in opinion is very normal and should be tackled with intelligence. There is no need to dominate any speaker to prove a point
You should be loud while speaking and use simple words that can be easily understood. You must always remember that you are here to support your point of view and not show off your vocabulary skills. There should be no room for aggression at the discussion
There is never a duration set for speakers to voice their opinion. Hence, you should be careful to not over speak and sound bland at the discussion. You must always remember at the end quality is always preferred over quantity. Once you are out on facts you should simply rest your case and allow other speakers to speak,
Be a Good Listener
Speaking is important, what is more important is to be a good listener. Only once you know what your fellow participants have to say can the discussion move in a positive direction. It is also possible for the discussion to go off track; one must always try bringing the topic back on track.
There is no use of going deep into individual topics. One should highlight the important points only and move along. Providing in depth knowledge can lead to participants getting bored. It is also not important to mention exact dates and time frames in your reference. Remember that your information should be correct and concise.
A group discussion may have an informal touch to it; however it should not be treated as a casual event. You should always be dressed in formals (few places provide the leverage of being dressed in smart casuals). You should be dressed comfortably. Positive gesture and right body language will definitely help score good at the group discussion.
The key to cracking a good group discussion is to be able to stand out and be noticed. For this you don’t need to be aggressive or foolish but you need to simply take them by your intelligence and leave a lasting impression.
Many a times, the group discussion does not really click for the participants and this way you may not be able to proceed to the next round. You should not be disheartened, you should simply take this as your first step and remember there are many more to come.