May 4, 2011

Preparing for GD to Score in MAH CET, Some Tips and Tricks

    MAH CET 2011 is over now, and you must be preparing for GD and PI. Here is something for you. In this article you will get to know about the qualities that are measured and judged by the panelists, learn how to exhibit leadership skills, the different types of GD topics, and the ways to generate points during the GD round.

    Qualities that count-

    Group Discussion is a way by which the B-School panel measures the following qualities in the applicants:
    Content: How much knowledge you possess on a specific topic.
    Rational thought process: How good is your analytical skills and thought process.
    Communication: Both spoken English and non-verbal communication.
    Group Behavior: How good is your group dynamics, the way you are interacting with a group and your body language.
    Leadership Skills: A leader shall emerge in the GD because of his/her contribution.
    Exhibiting leadership skills
    Leadership skills are exhibited when the speaker gives certain points in the GD which either moves the GD forward in a new direction or moves it towards a consensus. The leader brings in a fresh approach to a thought process which the group follows.
    So we see that content, knowledge and rational thought process are some of the most important requirements to be successful in a GD.
    How to generate points?
    There are 3 methods to generate points in a GD:
    KWA (Key Word Approach)
    VAP (View Point of Affected Parties)
    SPELT (Social, Political, Economic, Legal, Technology)

    Let us try to understand how to use these.

    KWA: Say the topic is “Deep Blue is not Blue Enough”. Now we got to take each word and try to understand the significance of it. “Deep Blue” can symbolize the super computer with whom Garry Kasparov had a chess competition. So once you connect the word with the example that’s one point. Now try generalizing further into the debate about artificial intelligence over human intelligence, and say that artificial intelligence is not “ENOUGH”. So we are trying to use the key words in the topic itself to first understand the topic better and then to generate more points.

    VAP: Say the topic is “Dowry continues to haunt Indian brides”. So who are the parties involved with this topic: Bride, Bride’s family, Groom, Groom’s family, Society, Media (who shall be make the issue public), NGOs (for supporting the bride), Government & Panchayats (their role in dowry removal), Law enforcers like courts & police. Now each of these parties’ view-points and roles related to the topic becomes a valid point for the GD.

    SPELT: Say the topic is “Retail boom spells doom for the local grocer”. So from SPELT way the following points can be generated:
    Social: Should we support the small kiranas just on humanitarian grounds?
    Political: Role of Government
    Economy: Impact on Indian Economy because of Retail & Retail sectors contribution to GDP
    Legal: FDI issues, Labor laws, Taxation
    Technology: Cold Storage & Supply Chain, Efficient supply and availability will marginalize prices and reduce costs and wastages.
    Hence we see that apart from knowledge, the way you are analyzing a topic is important.

    GD topics
    GD topics are classified under the following categories:
  1. Knowledge Intensive Topics
  2. Non-Knowledge Intensive topics

  3. Knowledge Intensive topics can be of the following nature:
  4. Economic Topics (Example: Liberalization is leading to jobless growth)
  5. Social Topics (Example: Dowry continues to haunt Indian brides)
  6. Political topics (Example: Reservation issue is just to get a vote bank)
  7. Sports/ Media related topics (Example: 1 Billion people, 1 Gold medal: this is with reference to Olympics)
  8. Sector based topics like in IT, Telecom, Retail (Example: Retail boom spells doom for the local grocer)

  9. Non-Knowledge Intensive topics can be of the following nature:
  10. Concrete topics (Example: Greed is good)
  11. Abstract topics (Example: Deep blue is not blue enough)

  12. So start listing down different topics under each areas or check out any GD book and start reading up under each categories.
    For Economic related topics look at fundamental concepts like FDI, Stock Markets, Liberalization, Employment scenario, Capital Convertibility, Rupee VS Dollar, Inflation, Export-Import, different kinds of economy in the world, Socialist versus Capitalist, etc. For Sector based topics start making a 1-2 page note on each important sector like IT, ITES, Banking, Insurance, Retail, Telecom, Healthcare, Infrastructure, Power, Agriculture, Logistics & transportation, Nuclear issues etc.
    Try to study about what has been happening in each sector in last 1 year, what are the problems, who are the major players, what is the future trend, what are the strengths and weaknesses in each sector.
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