successful group discussion tips
DESCRIPTIONThis presentation is based on Chapter 2 - Successful Group Discussion of the 17 part Group Discussion series provided by exforsys.com. In this presentation you will learn about various factors that influence the success of any group discussion such as discussion goals, topic selection, time management, multiple perspectives, conflict management and openended questions.
Group Discussion Training
Video 2: Successful Group Discussion
Welcome to Group Discussion Self-Study Training
In the previous chapter 1 of this series, you learnt how to discuss in a group. You also
learnt about discussing a topic with several aspects such as:
Identifying the goal of group discussion.
Identifying soft-spoken members and outspoken members
Learning to discuss in smaller groups
Learning to handle quiet members
Learning to connect between group members
Learning to ask questions
Now, let us go thro the 2nd chapter titled “Successful Group Discussion”.
This presentation is based on Chapter 2 - Successful Group Discussion of the 17 part Group
Discussion series provided by exforsys.com. In this presentation you will learn about
various factors that influence the success of any group discussion such as discussion goals,
topic selection, time management, multiple perspectives, conflict management and open-
Before I delve into the factors influencing the success of a group discussion, I would like to
draw your attention once again to the basic objective of group discussion. As mentioned in
my previous presentation of chapter 1, the objective of group discussion is to provide an
opportunity for every member of the group to present their idea and information that is
relevant to the topic. In relation to this core objective, there are few important factors that
can influence the outcome of a group discussion. Let us now go thro some of these crucial
To ensure that your group discussion succeeds in its objective, you need to make sure that
the goal of the group discussion is well-defined and is followed till the end.
Generally, the goal of any group discussion is to narrow down the list of ideas to a few that
are best or most beneficial to the issue on hand that is being discussed.
In order to pick the best among discussed ideas, you can ask the group to vote on the
strategy they think is the best.
Each idea can be given a voting percentage and the end result will give you best strategies.
Thus a well-defined group discussion goal will ensure that you will ultimately get the best
strategies among all the ideas that were discussed by the group.
The selection of group discussion topic is crucial for the success of the group as well.
Generally the topic is chosen by the group leader.
By selecting the topics that is relevant to issue on hand the members are asked questions
and are expected to answer individually.
With the selection of an apt topic, the leader is bound to extract several ideas, strategies
and options from each and every group member.
During discussion, open-ended questions that are associated with the chosen topic are
You must also remember that during brainstorm sessions, open-ended questions are the
best to generate ideas throughout the group.
Thus with a selection of the right topic and by discussion it with relevant open-ended
questions, you can extract the best solution for the issue on hand for which the group
discussion was originally conducted.
For the group discussion to succeed, one must never forget to ask open-ended questions.
Open ended questions are the soul of group discussion and does not have one definite
By asking open-ended questions to the group you can extract maximum response from the
It is important to allow members to think amongst each other and after which, members
can come up with their own strategy to the issue that is being discussed.
For example – an open ended question would appear as “What strategies do you think our
company can use to successfully market this product?”
As you can see from this example, open ended questions provides boundless options for
the group members to explore and put forth their views and opinions thereby contributing
towards successful group discussion.
Timing the discussion is important to achieve the set goal of the group discussion. The
length of a group discussion is generally set before the meeting begins.
It is important to allow the members enough time to brainstorm a variety of ideas. In
absence of proper time management, too many and also un-relevant ideas could get
prominence and relevant ideas may get missed out.
You need to make sure that each person gets an opportunity to present their own ideas so
they are not left out.
After a certain amount of time the next member then takes a turn presenting the ideas to
By proper time management, every member gets an opportunity to put forth their
thoughts, ideas and concepts there by providing maximum coverage for the topic being
Multiple Perspective discussion is one of the important ingredients for a successful group
It pays to make sure that the given topic is discussed from different points of view.
Multiple perspectives are very beneficial for companies and organizations because they
gain perspective from several views on the subject that is being discussed.
Members can share their own experiences and ideas while perspectives builds throughout
Thus by gaining ideas, views and concepts from the each and every group member, the
company will finally be able to make a strategic decision.
Conflicts are bound to arise in a group during discussion and it is very important to know
the art of conflict management so that the group discussion does not go haywire.
If a member decides to promote their own individual view on the topic without even
considering the ideas given by the other members then it will neither be good not
beneficial for the group.
The ideas that members come up with should help the group as a whole, not individually.
Group discussion is not a competition to see who has the best ideas.
The primary goal is to keep the members’ best interests in mind as a group by each person
coming up with ideas that contribute to the discussion.
Finally, after all the discussions and selection of suitable strategies you need to create a
pros and cons section for each idea.
After creating the section, allow each member to present their take on the advantages and
disadvantage to each strategy.
Compare the ideas and select the one which outweighs the others.
You can place a final vote and choose the best strategy that has the largest percentage of
pros and advantages.
As you can see, this is a powerful strategy which is simple to use and makes sure that the
best strategy for the issue on hand is drawn out as a result of discussion. Thereby bringing
the group discussion to its logical end.
You have now reviewed some of the important factors that contribute for the success of
any group discussion. By following the above suggested factors you can ensure that the
discussion concludes logically as well as beneficially to the members as well as to the
organization to handle any issue or to draw up the most appropriate strategy.
This concludes the second chapter of the Group Discussion training series. The next
chapter titled “Why Prepare for Group Discussions?” elaborates on the importance of
preparing ahead of time for group discussions and how it will impact on the outcome of
the discussion at the end.
You can read more on this series at exforsys.com
Thank you for watching this presentation.