FAQs - Group Discussion

Learn the answers to the questions that frequently arise in your mind !!

1.What is a GD?
GD is a discussion by a group of people which involves an exchange of thoughts and ideas. Group Discussions are largely used by institutes where there is a high level of competition.

2. What is Evaluated?
GD is a means to assess one’s overall personality.

The qualities judged are:
Mental Agility
Spontaneity of Decision
Interpersonal Skills
Alertness
Power of Assimilation
Clear & Logical Exposition
Leadership
Intellect
Moral Integrity

An Examiner can easily make an assessment of candidates on above parameters in a GD. All that one observes in a GD can be categorised into two broad areas: the Content and the Process. The content is all about the ‘matter’ (or the ‘what’) spoken in the GD. Whereas, the process refers to the ‘how’, ‘when’ and ‘why’ of the GD. Both are equally important and need adequate attention at all stages. A high quality contribution with no regard to the ‘process’ is as suicidal as one which is high on packaging with little content.

3. How does a GD Take Place?
A Group of 6-15 candidates are made to sit in a circular or a semi-circular (U Shaped) fashion so that they can see each other and take part in the discussion easily
Roll Numbers may be allotted to participants for easy recognition. Before the GD, the examiner (observer) announces the topic for discussion and informs candidates about the time-limit. He may also draw attention towards the etiquette, rules and regulation, procedure to be followed. He also clears any doubts/queries. The individuals of the group might be given some initial time to put down their thoughts on the topic. The examiner observes the proceedings of the discussion from a distance without directly interfering into it. He examines the performance of each candidate without any prejudice or favour.

4. Are the topics decided on the basis of the academic background of the participants?
No, The grouping of members and the topics is done by the institute’s admission team. Topics basis academic background are rarely asked

5. Can a definite stand be taken?
If you have complete conviction on your stand TAKE IT (esp. in case of ethical topics) – Its important to be true and fair first to yourself and then to others.
But, at the same time appreciate others point of view and evaluate their judgment without bias. Taking one side of the topic initially and then moving to another or oscillating between the two sides during the GD shows signs of indecisiveness. Remember, Managers are Effective Decision Makers.

In most groups, you would find close to a 50:50 situation for and against a topic. Even if you are a minority take the stand. Even, in the MBA selection process, you are a minority – ‘one out of 200’!

6. What is the right time to enter to ensure I am heard?
If the order is preset by the examiner then you will have your chance as per your turn

The opportunities to enter are
:
First Members
Last Members
Middle Members

The best time to enter is in the first so that you maintain uniqueness of your points, but at the risk of losing out on others points which you could build on. If you find it uncomfortable to be the first to take the plunge listen out others and then enter along with the middle/last members. Frankly, there is no right or wrong time to enter or not. Just make sure that you speak out your points in the initial round of discussion

7. How necessary is it to use examples for illustrating an idea?
Using an example simplifies the understanding of your point to the group. Substantiation is like putting a seal of authenticity to your statement. Try and use relevant facts/figures wherever possible. Use an example or two for a point that you wish to project

8. What is summarization?
Converting the entire discussion into 4 or 5 points without any bias to fully represent the thoughts of the group. In some cases, everyone might be asked to summarize so you must form a habit of summarizing.

9. What should you do if one member is very stubborn and aggressive?
Don’t get into a argument with the member – “Don’t let his virus INFECT you”. Objectively and calmly present your point of view vis-à-vis his. You could ask other group members to comment (to break the deadlock) and take the discussion forward

10.How do you participate when the noise level is high?
Every group has a High – when most people are talking – This is when you should listen and your mind should think and evaluate the plethora of others thoughts
You can interject when the group is on a low (you will be able to observe it if you are alert) – Then present your evaluation of others thoughts and perhaps take the discussion on to a more positive platform, This would show a clear structure in your thinking. Sometimes you can bring the group to a refocus, when the group digresses from the topics.

These are all positive traits of a manager and naturally gives you plus points.

FMS GD Topics

- Computers result in unemployment.
- The parliamentary form of democracy has failed in India.
- Consumer satisfaction should be achieved at any cost.
- Managers do not add value to the society.
- Democracy is the only way to a sustained economic growth.
- Should youth indulge in politics?
- Liberalisation in 1991 was a forced one.
- Democracy is a luxury in India.
- Business Ethics.
- Infrastructure and India.
- Effectiveness of economic embargo on Iraq.
- The parliamentary form of democracy has failed in India.
- Consumer satisfaction should be achieved at any cost.
- Managers do not add value to the society.

GD Topics - IIM Bangalore

Topics of various GDs performed in IIM B

- MBAs should be taxed at higher rates in the country.
- Are we raising a generation of burnt out children?
- The government should stop funding the IITs and the IIMs and, instead, divert the funds to primary education.
- Profit is the only business of business.
- Democracy has hampered India’s progress.
- India should be reorganized into smaller states.
- Growth and integrity are poles apart.
- Managerial skills learnt from classroom can never match those learnt from experience.
- Government should reduce defence expenditure and spend more on social sector.
- The UN has not served any purpose in the last decade.
- Religion is a private matter and should be no concern of the state.
- Is corrupt but efficient politicians better than honest and in-efficient politicians.
- Beauty contests do little to improve the stature of women.
- To sustain India’s integrity it is necessary to devolve more power to states.
- Women reservation in parliament is against the tenets of democracy.

GD Topics At IIM C

Topics of Group Discussions performed at IIM C

- Is bureaucracy a hindrance to economic reforms in India?
- Under Indian parliamentary democracy it is impossible to ensure balanced regional development.
- For the poorer sections of society, a state controlled economy is better than a liberalized economy.
- Industrial growth in the next millennium will depend a lot on how we tackle the environmental issues.
- Food comes first, ethics later.
- In India democracy is nothing but politicised monarchy.
- New Delhi should not be the capital of India.
- Industrial growth and environmental care do not go hand in hand.
- TV commercials should be banned.
- To survive in the civilized world one needs to be hypocrite.
- Money is the sixth sense without which one cannot enjoy the other five.
- Advanced mathematics has no value in life.
- Efficiency and corruption go hand in hand.
- Welcome back socialism.
- Information Technology.
- TV Commercials should be banned.
- Politics and economics go together.
- Winning is not the important thing, it is the only thing.
- It is all the fault of the politicians.
- We need more management schools than primary schools.
- The medium of teaching in schools should be English.
- Efficiency and corruption go hand in hand.
- Advanced mathematics is of no use in every day life.
- Welcome back socialism.
- To survive in a civilized world one needs to be a hypocrite.

GD Topics at IIM L

Topics of GDs performed at IIM L

- Film-makers are indulging in cinematic Fortitution in the name of folk culture.
- Corruption is the main outcome of democracy in India.
- The formation of European Union has a drastic effect on India’s trade.
- Knowledge is the awareness of one’s ignorance.
- Virtue has its own reward.
- Is the job of a manager to do the right things or to do things rightly?
- Coke and Pepsi should be driven out of India.
- Can religion be kept out of politics?
- Religious fundamentalism is more dangerous than regionalism.
- International embargo: the US is going too far.
- India-Pakistan relation: has it reached a point of no return?
- ‘Tryst with destiny’ — has India redeemed its pledge?
- Is India ready for e-commerce?
- Has the time come to eradicate the nuclear weapons?
- All education should be exclusively provided by the government.
- Tryst with destiny - Has India redeemed its pledge.
- Indo-Pak relations – more rhetoric, less substance.
- Money is the sixth sense.
- All Education should be exclusively provided by the government.
- Indo-Pak relations – point of no return.

GD Topics - IIMK

Topics of Group Discussions performed at IIM Kozikhode.

Women’s empowerment will lead to social development.
Is corrupt but efficient politicians better than honest and in-efficient politicians.

In one GD a paper clipping from one of leading newspapers was given and candidates were asked to read for 5 minutes and after that 15 minutes was given for discussion.

Paper clippings were :
Chinese goods - dumping or marketing.
‘A means of political awakening’.
The interviewer is checking whether the candidate can grasp the idea fast and discuss in detail on the topic.

IIM Kozhikode Other GD Topics

Science and not rhetoric underpins the National Policy.
Human rights impedes economic programme.
Women empowerment is the basis for social development.
Subsidies for higher studies should be done away with.

GD Topics - SCMHRD

Topics of GDs performed at SCMHRD !!

The money being put into cricket is harming the development of other sports.
IT boom in India.
Large Dams are a must for India’s development.
Leaders should be followers first.
Should the Government ban India from playing cricket match in sharjah? Justify.
Why more girls choose Human Relations Management.
Advertising and ethics.
IT: What does the future hold? Recommendation?
Conscription should be made compulsory.
Why is patriotism lacking in India?
What Ails India more – corruption or Overpopulation.
What should India do to preserve its IT command over the World.
India should not aspire to be a nuclear super power.
Bureaucracy is root cause of India’s social and economic problems.
Do B-Schools make business leaders or mere managers.

WTO – Effects on consumer – 40 mins
Kumbh Management / IT hype / Budget proposal – 40 mins
Honesty as a value is lost – how can it be regained? – 40 mins
Suggestions to reduce oil pool deficit – 40 mins
India – a nuclear state – pros and cons – 40 mins

Ethics in advertising .
Suggestions to Informatrion and Broadcasting Ministry to improve it’s services.
Divorce is a necessary evil.
Beauty contents: Is it justifiable?
How to make people listen.
Hype regarding boom in IT industry.
Corruption is a neccesary evil for success in any sphere of life.
Unethical advertising: where should the line should be drawn?
Tenets of effective communication.

Ceasefire in Kashmir will bring peace - 15 minutes
How can India achieve true democracy - 20 minutes
How to change people’s behaviour from being lazy, casual, pretentious.

Imoprtant GD Topics That You Should Know About

In some GDs - a subjective topic is preferred over others. This list contains some of these topics categorized under different heads.

POLITICAL
:

Should Indian Railways be privatized
Impact of Globalization on India
India’s Security Concern
Liberalization of Insurance Sector: Pros and Cons
Appropriateness of reservation policy in India
Public Sector Disinvestment
Privatization is the need of the hour in Indian Industry
The USA is the biggest threat to World Peace
Reservation for Women in Education & Service
Indian corporate are puppets in the hands of Indian Politicians
Is India’s increasing expenditure on defense justified
Should India make peace with Pakistan
Will more autonomy to states jeopardize the unity of the nation
If we were Planning Commission Members
How can the Indian Political system be improved
Rural Development is a political issue, rather than something of substance
Parliamentary democracy is an obstacle to economic growth in India
Can politicians survive without corruption
Criminalization of politics in India – Causes and Remedies
There should be reservation for the silent middle income population of India
A politician’s private life should not be the public’s conscience
Politicians & Industrialists nexus

ECONOMIC:

Infrastructure alone cannot improve India’s standing in the International arena
Globalization is bad for Indian companies
Infrastructure development is of prime importance for India in the next millennium
All nationalized banks in India should be privatized
Total Liberalization is the only way for economic development in India
In a country like India, Public sector is vital for national development
How much should India depend on IMF for loan
Is India’s expenditure on hi-tech areas justified from the social and economic point of view
India as you visualize in the year 2020
The finance minister has not done anything for the common man
India’s should emphasize more on SSI & MSI for employment
The fruits of economic policy can be reaped only if there is a strong political system
In the long run, the current economic policies will lead to MNCs dominating the Indian economy and society
Growing consumerism is an indicator of the nation’s economic prosperity
Invasion of MNCs is a drain on the resources of India
Family run businesses are the backbone of Indian Economy

EDUCATION:

Brain Drain is good for the country
All higher education in India should be privatized
Standardization of Textbooks is the best tool for national integration
The govt should stop funding IITs and IIMs and instead provide the funds to primary education
The present education system perpetuates inequality

ENVIRONMENT:

Pollution is a price you pay for economic development
Developed Countries are damaging the eco-system of the earth
Urban pollution has been blown out of proportion
Economic development at the cost of Ecological Degradation

ETHICS AND LAW:

Is cloning of humans ethical
What should be the objective of a company – profits or customer
Are ethics and business compatible
Entry of MNCs & their business ethics
Principles of Mahatma Gandhi; are they valid today?
Social justice and equity is more important than economic equity and justice
The constitution of Indian needs to be re-looked at

TECHNOLOGY:

Computerization in India may lead to labor unrest
Technological growth is more important than social cohesion for the advancement of a nation
Excessive computerization is stealing jobs from the people

MBA:

Our country needs more MBAs than technocrats
Professional management is a must to attain targeted growth
Indian Management should find its own ethos, American & Japanese paradigms wont work
Public sector should be handed over to independent professional managers
Will the mushrooming of MBA institutes in India produce professional managers
Management graduates are more interested in salaries & jobs rather than management as a course

SOCIAL:

Can India still boast about being a secular country
The demand for foreign brands has overtaken that for our home grown brands
Vada-pav vs. Mc Donald Burger
Communism has lost its relevance
Cinema is at most entertainment with a degenerating effect
Journalism should be out of the premises of censorship
In our society, leadership should be entrusted to the youth ad not to the old
Educated Indian lacks national commitment
Beauty contests don’t fit into the Indian culture
Terrorism is like a virus – very easy to spread, very difficult to contain
Television! An idiot box or knowledge provider
Are we producing a generation of burnt out children
We have exchanged our golden heritage for a pair of blue jeans
TV and Cinema have more evil effects than beneficial

SPORTS:

Is cricket hampering the growth of other sports in India
The making of great sportsmen requires a good infrastructure
The future of Indian Sport

GD Topics at IIMs

Topics of GD performed at IIMs.

- Indo-Pak differences are so deep-rooted that Kashmir is only being used as an excuse.
- Violence is a prerequisite for progress.
- Underdevelopment — fate, mismanagement or oppression?
- Our country needs more technocrats and less managers.
- Management education is a luxury for a poor country like India.
- Ends justify the means.
- Is war with Pakistan inevitable?
- Will computerization make a robot of all human beings?
- Women make better managers than men.
- Do computers dehumanize society?
- Success comes not so much by solving problems as by exploiting opportunities.
- All higher education in India should be privatized.
- What will the present budget be like?
- Management education should make job seekers job creators.
- To prevent India from disintegrating, more autonomy should be given to the states.
- What will the present budget be like?
- Management education should make job seekers job creators.
- To prevent India from disintegrating, more autonomy should be given to the states.
- Talk of social responsibility in the private sector is sheer hypocrisy.
- Political crisis and the Indian economy.
- Corruption is an economic lubricant, and hence may not be all that bad.
- The Indian economy is in shambles.
- GDs as a means of selection by the IIMs are a farce.
- Is greed an essential human quality?
- Pollution control is a luxury for India.
- Engineers joining management is a national waste.
- The pen is mightier than the sword, but fanaticism is the mightiest of all.
- Has the Indian political structure outlived its utility?
- No one studies for an MBA. Everyone studies for a job.
- Parliamentary democracy is an obstacle in the path of growth of the Indian nation.
- Do we need graduate engineers at all?

GD Topics - IIFT & MDI

Topics of GDs performed at IIFT & MDI.

IIFT GD Topics:

Benefits of professional integrity.
Bilateralism vs multilateralism.
Ecology and tourism.
Technical Modernization and job employment do not go hand in hand.
Can politics be delineated from sports?
Can International boundary be dissolved?
India makes nuclear bombs, but cannot make quake resistant houses.
Role of money in elections.
Fast changes in Information Technology— excitement or agony?
India makes nuclear bombs, but cannot make quake resistant houses.
Role of money in elections.
Fast changes in Information Technology— excitement or agony?

MDI GD Topics:

Modern cinema is a boon to the Indian society.
Reservation is necessary for social transformation.
Education or empowerment leads to a quicker.