Economics · Governance · Law · Politics · Public Policy

Discuss to Discover, Discuss to Change

Let’s start with a question. Why do we need groups? Is an individual incapable enough of building and standing up alone for any goal achievement? How does an individual contribute in socio-economic terms to his/her country through group discussions? These are some questions answered here.

Five things that are foreseen to be the basic reasons of group formation: Security, Status, Self-Esteem, Affiliation, Power, Goal Achievement. Now why do we need groups? It is the very reason for the existence of groups.

What it says?

Group discussions are a very important aspect of group communication. These are a creative and dynamic activity which stimulates reflective thinking among the members. In a group discussion, an individual’s thought process is influenced by the views and opinions of the other members. It also depends on where and in which direction the mood of the discussion moves. Therein each participant is free to speak his views. A successful group discussion involves both listening and speaking.

It is also known as leaderless discussion because its main aim is to find out the natural leadership quality of the participating candidates. The main feature of group discussion is the conflict, which is a difference or disagreement among the members of the group. It usually develops when every member of the group has a different opinion regarding the discussion topic. It can stimulate the members to find new solutions to the problem. If it arises due to the political behavior of the members, it may have dysfunctional consequences.

Individuals at benefit

It helps to combine individual strengths of the group members and hence has a set of varied skill sets applied in the decision making process. It provides a deeper understanding of the subject as every member of the group has different opinions and views regarding the discussion topic. It provides the ability to think critically as it enables a participating candidate to think in divergent directions to generate more points and a good presentation of the topic. It enhances confidence in speaking as each participant gets an opportunity to share his/her views and opinions in front of other members of the group regarding the discussion topic , which increases his/her confidence. It gives an opportunity to hear the opinions of other persons as equal opportunity is provided to every participant to share and exchange the views and opinions regarding the discussion topic.

Importance in various aspects

Communication Skills – Having good communication skills is what needed in every field of work now-a-days. Good speaker and good listener skills are the traits which are very well conceived through group discussions, constituting the top qualities of a leader. Emphasizing on the clarity of thought is what needed, hence leaving less scope for misunderstandings.

Cooperation Skills –Acknowledging other’s point of view and giving others a chance to speak are some gestures that we learn.

Leadership Skills – It gives an opportunity to speak even if others disagree, putting the point through politely stating the reasons. It displays a pleasing personality trait and upholds the etiquette of a group discussion.

Analytical Skills- Analyzing the topic and then speaking up with a relevant statement, fact or statement. Rather than blabbering without making any point, articulate views put forward take the candidate into the good books of the panelists. There is an open gate to suggestions and different opinions in a right direction.

Subject Knowledge – The candidate gets to read a lot and gain significant knowledge on various topics spanning commerce, politics, arts, law, media, social causes etc. so that speaking up in the discussion come naturally to you and broadens the vision which is most important.

The candidate shows his or her true picture during the course of group discussion. The single most important reason why this form of selection process is becoming more and more popular is the fact that it compels you to speak along with brainstorming your shell of knowledge with out of the box  thoughts. Which other selection process allows you to select one or two persons from amongst 10 or 12 in a short span of 10 to 15 minutes. That is why a Group Discussion is a methodology used by an organization to gauge whether the candidate has certain personality traits and/or skills that it desires in its members.  Companies conduct group discussion after the written test so as to check on your interactive skills and how good you are at communicating with other people. The GD is to check how you behave, participate and contribute in a group, how much importance do you give to the group objective as well as your own, how well do you listen to viewpoints of others and how open-minded are you in accepting views contrary to your own. The aspects which make up a GD are verbal communication, non-verbal behavior, conformation to norms, decision-making ability and cooperation. You should try to be as true as possible to these aspects.

The reason why companies or institutes put you through a Group discussion and an interview, after testing your technical and conceptual skills in an exam, is to get to know you as a person and gauge how well you will fit in their institute. The Group discussion tests how you function as a part of a team.

The concept of Group Discussion has not been a part of the regular academic curriculum in Colleges and Universities as students usually face a lot of problem in this area of the Selection Process.That is why Group Discussion has been a part of the Selection process for admission into most of the top Business Schools. And it is not just limited to college and company level. It has been taken forward in schools as well for it is seen as a cultivating tool for students in a better way.

It is the matter of utmost importance to trigger the need of dais like Samvaad 2015, an opening gate for young lads and lasses to brainstorm their minds in cross-cultural dialogue of national and international relevance and motivate them to imbibe leadership qualities and prevent the society from issues harming people’s welfare. Here stars from the fields of politics, business, academia, entertainment, journalism and sports share the platform with the passionate upcoming leaders bringing out the powerful artillery of the young youth to tackle critical issues of national context and hence declare him/her as the potential workforce for the realization of the vision like seen by our respected Prime Minister Narendra Modi- “MAKE IN INDIA”.

Involvement in cooperative activities, cultivation of intrinsic interest, awareness of moral and political issues, and traits such as moral sensitivity and optimism are among the central factors that support youth engagement which are encouraged by such platforms like Samvaad 2015.

About the Author

Rashi GuptaRashi Gupta is currently pursuing her second year in Electronics and Communication engineering from Jaypee Institute of Information Technology, Noida. Her areas of interest extend to Administration and Politics. She is looking forward to a career in the same, in future. She wants to be a change for the society as she loves interacting with new people and stand apart due to her out of the box vision. She likes to read, play badminton, travel, and explore new activities. Currently, she is interning with the Model Governance Foundation.

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