How to Prepare for Attending a Group Discussion

How to Prepare for Attending a Group Discussion

Group Discussion or the GD have become a commonplace in today’s selection process whether it is for a job selection or for getting admission to a top rated college or university. If you have applied to organizations and institutions that conduct a GD as a part of their selection process then it would important for you to prepare yourself to face a GD apart from preparing yourself to face the interview.

To be true, an interview isn’t as challenging as a GD because in a personal interview, you would be evaluated solely on your performance. When it comes to a GD however, your evaluation is comparative and based on other candidates’ performance as well. GD helps the evaluators compare and select their ideal candidates. Also, a GD majorly shows your team building skills which are absolutely essential in any organization.

To brief it all up, a GD is conducted with about 8 to 10 candidates for about 20 to 40 minutes. Sometimes, it can be just for about 15 minutes too. The topic is given to the group a few minutes before the GD begins. Typically, a GD reflects the inherent skills of the candidates as the topic leaves them with not much time to prepare. That being said, if you are keen on performing well at a GD, it does call for some preparation. While you cannot definitely get to know the topic of the GD beforehand, you definitely can hone your inherent skills. Here is what you can do to prepare yourself to face a GD –

  1. Read:

This is the first and perhaps the most crucial step in preparing yourself for the GD. The more you read, the better acquainted you would be to deal with the various topics that can be presented to you for the GD. You can read anything and everything across various subjects and industries but make sure that you are well versed with the current affairs as most often, the topics for GDs are based on recent happenings.

  1. Participate in Mock GDs:

Create an informal group with your friends or colleagues. You can even find like minded people with similar interests and qualifications through social media. Meet regularly with your group members and conduct mock GDs. This will benefit you all.

  1. Improve your communications skills:

Practice listening and speaking skills. These skills are essential to express yourself in the right tone and manner. Being assertive is important but being too aggressive will run down your chances of getting selected. So, practice well. You can try speaking to yourself in the mirror. This is a great way to evaluate yourself, your body language as well as boost your self-confidence.

While preparing yourself for the GD, keep in mind what the evaluators will be looking at – leadership skills, interpersonal skills, communication skills and persuasive skills. Also, the panellists will test your ability think and make your point to the group. Your clarity of thought, how you handle a conflict of opinion, your individual understanding of the subject, how flexible you are towards new ideas and opinions and your ability to create a consensus with the others in the group.

Of course, you may not be able to reflect all the above characteristics in the short time allotted for the GD. But whenever you do get a chance, make sure that you reflect your confident self and bear in mind the above aspects that the panellists would be looking out for. If you are able to generate a positive response, you are good to go!

Practical Steps to Personal Development

Practical Steps to Personal Development

Personal development, to say the least, is a lifetime process. Personal development is basically a tool for people to self-access their skills, qualities as well as evaluate the aims and goals of their life. When you aim for personal development, you basically prepare yourself to maximize your potential, improve your self-confidence and achieve a higher quality of life. Achieving personal development requires a conscious effort on your part so that you train yourself to make effective life choices and decisions for your future.

Typically speaking, personal development starts from the very beginning of your life and the various experiences in your family, school and college will shape you as adults but personal development should never stop as you grow old. As a matter of fact, you should consciously aim at improving yourself as you age. Below are some practical steps that will help you with your personal development –

#1 Organize yourself and your time

If you are considering making some positive changes in your life, it would be worthwhile to begin with getting more organized. When you get more organized, you basically create for yourself time you didn’t even know existed. Well, there are no new real hours created but because you are organized, you will have so much more time saved that you can use this extra time to spend with your loved ones, do things that make you happy, hone your creative skills and devote time to education and work; all of which will help you achieve personal development on a continual basis.

#2 create your personal CV

You don’t just need a CV or resume when you are applying for jobs; you also need a record of your personal goals and achievements for some self-appraisal. Your personal CV will help you evaluate your present stand and also help you to create some real- workable personal goals for you so that you improve from your present position. Remember that the purpose of a personal CV is for your own reference as a checklist of sorts to assess your skills.

#3 Undertake skills appraisal

When looking through your skills, of course, you can feel good about yourself but wait, did you look at your skills critically? If you haven’t, do that now. Look at your skills from a critical perspective and check which of your skills need to be upgraded. Your skills are good as long as they are valid so keep that in mind.

#4 look at your transferable skills

Transferable skills are those skills that can be applied to various aspects of your life. For instance, if you have good listening skills, you will be an effective communicator and there will be various other situations where this skill will come handy. More examples of such skills are IT skills, organizational skills, problem solving skills, decision making skills and emotional intelligence among many others.

#5 Overcome barriers to learning any new skill

There is no denying the fact that learning a new skill will lead to personal development. Of course, you will be able to improve your efficiency and productivity and all of this will have a major positive impact on your overall personal and professional development. As students, when you are exposed to a new situation or experience, there may be a requirement for you to learn new skills. However, there can be times when you will face certain barriers to learning new skills. These barriers can be lack of confidence, your economic situation, family commitments or lack of time. All of these issues can be overcome; look for possibilities before you give up.