SPJIMR Rolls Out New Technique To Assess Candidates

Mumbai: | Updated: Dec 26 2002, 05:30am hrs
High-decibel airing of opinion and the ability to make oneself hearddo these traits often demonstrated in a conventional group discussion (GD) reveal your capabilities of becoming a successful manager Maybe not. At least that seems to be the inference doing the rounds at the Mumbai- based SP Jain Institute of Management Studies and Research (SPJIMR). In its effort to overcome some of these drawbacks in assessing a candidate through the traditional group discussion (GD) method, the institute has now rolled out a new technique termed group interviews (GI). The technique is aimed at assessing the managerial potential of the wannabe MBA during the forthcoming admissions.

Says SPJIMR faculty S Shriram: We feel that GDs do not necessarily make a rounded evaluation of candidates participating in such an endeavour.

This is more so because often only those who can take a firm stance and aggressively communicate their standpoint get noticed in a GD. But such orientations do not completely define a manager in the contemporary corporate environment, he says.

And as one of the probable alternatives to GDs, the institute has devised this new technique of GIs whereby a panel, comprising a team of faculty and alumni of the institute, simultaneously evaluate a group of candidates in the same room and at the same time.

The panel asks candidates to articulate on an issue. Even as the candidates are narrating a certain experience, the interviewers can abruptly ask them to halt and ask any of the other candidates to take off from where the present candidate left.

Finally all the candidates are asked to give an opinion on the best performing participant within their own group. Their collective opinion is further revalidated with the observations that the panel has collectively embarked upon, explains Prof Shriram.

The practice enables even those who may be reticent but may have genuine capabilities an opportunity to articulate, unlike a GD.

Also, Prof Shriram affirms that such an initiative also gives the students an opportunity to evaluate their own competitors and openly proclaim the top performers within the group. This again is something that a GD may not be able to render.