GD Tips – Do’s and Don’ts in a Group Discussion

Group Discussion forms a crucial stage in the admission process of top B-schools as well in during the placement process. For the admission process it’s still an evaluation round but for the placement process it’s an eliminations round. So it becomes very important to perform well in the GD and clear this round. The candidate appearing for the GD should be aware of what actions and gestures can get them positive points and what can cost them the selection. Here’s a list of Do’s and Don’ts of participating in the GD. So please read this carefully.

List of Do’s during a group discussion

Here is a list of things that should be done during a discussion to encourage efficiency and productivity.

  • Keep eye contact while speaking: Its sheer sign of confidence. But make sure that you speak to everyone in the group and not just one person. After all, it is a GROUP discussion.
  • Initiate the GD: If you are aware of the topic and have confidence that interpretation of the topic is correct, initiate the discussion. This shows that you are willing to lead the group.
  • Speak clearly: The pitch has to be high enough so that you are heard in the group and low enough so that it is not perceived as screams.
  • Listen carefully to others: While discussion know that you are open to new ideas as well as criticism. Allow other members to put their point forth as well.
  • Speak Sensibly: CONTENT is the king. So every sentence that you speak has to be relevant and more importantly, audible. Make short contributions of 30-40 seconds for 3-4 times and that’s done.
  • Make sure to bring the discussion on track: Sometime sentiments take over a discussion and the train of thought can lead the group to discussion on irrelevant or trivial issues. A good leader will take the initiative to steer the discussion back on track. But, do it gently. Such kind of twists can be misinterpreted as hostility.
  • Formal dressing: First impression is made when you walk into the discussion area. Formal dressing will help convey the right image.
  • Positive attitude: Avoid saying negatives like ‘No, this wrong’ or this doesn’t make any sense! Add a positive twist to the same emotion and say ‘I hear your point, but let’s look at it from a different perspective.

List of Don’ts during a group discussion

Here is a list of some gestures participant should actively avoid.

  • Don’t raise the pitch: Raising the pitch will lead to an argument which is not productive for any discussion. Moderate tone is the ideal solution. So don’t argue or shout during the GD
  • Don’t be excessively expressive with hand gestures: Finger pointing and table thumping are perceived as over aggressiveness and are not appreciated during spirited discussion.
  • Don’t hold a pen and make sounds with it or shake your leg: This is a sure sign of nervousness. This might also distract other participants during a discussion. Please avoid the same.
  • Don’t keep talking continuously: Nothing kills a discussion more than one participant trying to dominate by being the only one speaking. An improper listener spoils the discussion and eventually spoils the purpose of the discussion.
  • Don’t get into a one-on-one argument: In a GD, participants are required to talk to the entire group rather than have a one-on-one argument. Drawing personal example is to be avoided as well.
  • Don’t be indifferent when others are talking: A good team member is not only the one who speaks, but also the one who listens. Do not be indifferent or don’t interrupt when other participants are putting their point forward.

Also Read: Interview tips: Do’s and Don’ts during an Interview