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All About GDs

My interactive Learning Element



GD Techniques
21st Oct. 2007

Mohit Mangal
Learning Goals

• Mile One
– GD and Concepts

• Mile Two
– GD : A psychologist’s perspective

• Mile Three
– Some FAQs
Mile One – Understand

• GD and Its Purpose

• Types of GD’s

• Elements in a GD

• Parameters of Evaluation
What is a GD?

• A GD is a discussion of a topic by a
group of people
– Exchange of thoughts and ideas
– Participants vary from 8-15
– A topic or situation given, 8-15 mins
– Important element in any selection process
What is a GD?

• 3 variables
– Group
to speak on
– A specific topic
For a
– Specified time
Why is a GD conducted ?
• Helps evaluate
– It helps form opinion about a large number of candidate
– in a short period of time
– on a common platform

• Assess critical interpersonal skills

– Team membership, leadership, ability to influence, etc.
– Not possible through the application, aptitude test and
even a personal interview
In the PDP perspective…

• A Group discussion is really your

Personal Effectiveness in action…
Types of GD’s

• Structured - Default GD
– Topic given with 8-15 mins for
– No leader appointed, brief may not
include anything but the topic
– 80% of the occasions
Types of GD’s

• Unstructured GDs
– More unstructuredness built in
– ‘choose a topic’ OR
– ‘Select a Chairman’ OR
– A game or a group exercise!
Types - Special GD

• Case studies
– Situation in writing
– Creates the framework

• Role plays
– Specific roles to each participant
– Respond by assuming character’s role
Parameters of Evaluation
Parameters of evaluation

( A simulated game!!)
• Rank the top 6 items that makes a top GD
contributor :
– How to contribute good Content
– How to handle an aggressive grup
– Quality of points
– English fluency
– Start the GD
– How to do a good summary
– How shd I enter
– How shd I exit ?
GD Elements

• Content
– The ‘what’ or ‘matter’ spoken

• Process
– The ‘how’, ‘when’ and ‘why’ it is

Weight age must be 50-50

Do not be preoccupied by the process
Parameters of evaluation

• Quality of content (Content)

• Behavioral and Personality skills
• Communication Skills (Process)

• Hence, key success factors

Parameter 1
• Quality of content (50% weightage)
– Comprehension of core idea
– Structure and Direction
– Analysis of the topic (Asking a Why or a How)
– Relevance of contribution
– Various Interpretations/perspectives
– Reasoning behind your views
– Real life examples
– Generate supportive Data
Parameter 2

• Behavioral and Personality skills – AT

PAR Hierarchy (25% weightage)
– Attitude
– Team membership
– Participation
– Assertion vs Accomodation
– Ready for Process Leadership
Parameter 3

• Communication (25% weightage)

– Listening skills
– Assimilation
– Coherent Articulation
– Body Language and Eye Contact
GD Concepts – A Summary
• Content – Process
– Elements in a GD
• QOC – B&P – communication
– Parameters of evaluation
• PREP Model
– Quality of content
• AT PAR Hierarchy
– Behavioral and Personality Skills
Group Discussion
A Psychologist’s Perspective
Roles seen in a GD
• The Professor
• The Salesman
• The Gatekeeper
• The Timekeeper
• The Butcher
• The Spectator
• The Passenger
Roles seen in a GD: Professor
His strength:
– Grasp of the subject, knowledge and
• His limitation:
– Pre occupation with his own ideas
– Low on listening
– Does not even know if others are
listening to him
Roles seen in a GD: Salesman

His Strength :
– Very good at selling any thing to any
– Very good at making friends
• Weakness:
- Needs an idea to be sold
- Not rich in own ideas
Roles seen in a GD: Time
• Strength
– Keeps time and eggs the group to move

• His weakness:
– More preoccupied with time than the
task and quality
Roles seen in a GD: Butcher

• Strength (Main Attribute)

– Chops things to pieces with disdain
– Welcome in a group with aggressive
• His limitation: Might be
uncontrollably aggressive himself
Roles seen in a GD: Gatekeeper

• The Gatekeeper
– Controls entry and exit; Maintains the
– Knows who is doing what; Uses that to
allow entry or exit

His limitation: Low content

Roles seen in a GD: Spectator

• The Strength :
– Involved in the proceedings though
plays limited role
– Appreciation of the game very high
• His limitation:
– Invisible; Lost in the crowd
Secret of Success – Group Task

GD Roles – A Summary

• Acknowledge the roles in a GD

• Know your natural roles
• Work on ‘mobility’ to enhance your

• Assess with a match the following

How to generate ideas ?

• Wheel and Mind Map Approach ™

• Identify the key words
• Separate out from the topic wheel
• Each goes into another wheel
• Explore each word – Definition, meanings,
• Establish linkages – new meanings,
similes, other interpretations
• Share these….and you are on your way
Tell me more about body language

• Be aware of positive and negative

body language
– Be aware of YOUR own body language
– Avoid glaring errors
• Mantra: positive body language and
good eye contact
• Be aware and not too conscious of
your body language
I don’t feel too confident about my
English…Help !
• Don’t Worry
• Excellent hold over English : Means
• Content quality most important
• Can you convey your idea ?
– Yes ? Good enough
– Fluency, Accent : far less important
I want to improve my english !

• 13 minutes a day
• 10 Mins : TV News Reader
– Into a mirror
– Into a dictaphone
• 3 mins : Short Extempore
– 1 min
– Simple topics
• Speak in English at home/with friends
– Nothing better
How can enter better ? I am
weak at that
• Entry strategies: ways to enter the
– Enter at the troughs
– Establishing link to the previous speaker
• Add an example (Support or against)
• Reasoning (Support or against)
– Summarising at the right time
– Entry thro Role Change – very effective
Is it important to start a GD ?

• Not at all
• Risk – Return
• Don’t stop yourself if you have clarity
• Key Expectations from a starter :
– Gives a positive start
– Sets the direction and the pace
– Gives confidence to others
– Gain confidence of others
What shd I say If I am asked to
summarise ?
Try to summarize
– Restate all points of view
– Not only your own
– if there has been no consensus, Do not force it
into your summary
– Grab the chance
How do I manage an aggressive
group ?
• Focus on your performance
• Focus on making at least 2
• Gate keeper : an important role;
• An Aggressive member takes care of
himself. He needs no enemies
– The Panel takes care of the rest
What is aggressive ? What is assertive ?

• Aggressive
– High on opinion; low on supportive data, reasoning
and examples
– High on articulation; low on listening
– High on repetitive; Low on assimilation
– ‘PREP’ model missing, in essence
• Assertive
– Desirable trait to have
– Very strong on ‘PREP’ model of contribution
– Active listener and effective in assimilation
– Fewer but relevant and forceful articulator