The Grind Of Group Discussions!

2 06 2007

It’s been almost four years since I went through the typical MBA grind of group discussions and interviews. The irony of life is that I went through more GDs to get into a B-School than to find a job! Those 3rd year and 4th year of engineering were days of quite tension and light excitement.. Attending CAT coaching, writing GRE test classes, engaging in debates for the heck of it.. Cracking that CAT is terrorizing enough, yet one has to live with the agonizing preparations of GDs and PIs too..

I still remember my first GD experience in TIME coaching classes of Hyderabad. Its one of those training classes and my faculty pulled me into that exhibition fish bowl along with eleven another to be the bakras where the other folks had the pleasure of that live performance. I still remember my first attempt of courage when I started off the discussion by announcing the topic and the tongue-tied way in which I sat with a stupid expression only to be mocked by the facilitator! I must say that it did wonders to my ego and I never kept shirking away from saying something sensible ever again. Yet, oddly enough, it did generate a healthy disrespect for those fish market kind of GD settings. You either end up feeling rattled or queerly unsettled.

One can really judge ones’ behavior from the way he/she carries oneself in the GDs. Some people wear their heart on sleeve, and for some, its sleeve on heart.. You can meet your Mr. Hitler personified or Ms. Goody Two Shoes out there.. One may run out of things to talk on, or you may not even get a chance to make a presence. There is quite an amount of luck that comes in and your mood plays a huge role too.. Don’t let that influence you, as picking people out of a GD is a highly subjective matter.. More often than not it depends hugely on the evaluator and his priorities. Some may prefer the calm and sensible types while some may look for warm and aggressive people. Be assertive, and not pushy. Give chance to the other person, yet not at the cost of yours.. Be a great listener and add value to the discussion.. Whatever may be the outcome, take it in your stride. Remember always, it’s your attitude that turns the tide in your favor!


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