We humans are very social by nature. We tend to surround ourselves with people wherever we go. In schools, colleges, workplaces you’ll find that everyone is part of some group or the other. Vey simply put, a group is a number of people who are classed or put together.
When it comes to the SSB, groups play a major role, considering that we have an entire segment of tests which are done in groups.
Every group has a leader. It’s a very basic known fact. All the group members of a particular group are not exactly identical and same in their personality types, their thinking and perceptions. Each person in a group is unique and different. Only one thing remains the same, the dream of being in the Armed Forces. So, even though there are so many individuals who differ from one another, you’ll always find just one leader. Leadership is extremely important. An officer has to be a leader as well in order to be an effective officer. The troops depend and rely on the leadership of their officer, so it is very essential that the candidate must possess these qualities.
During the SSB, candidates have to undergo the Group Testing Officer’s Tests (GTOs). These tests include the group discussions (GDs), Group Planning Exercise (GPEs), Progressive Group Task (PGT), Group Obstacle Race (snake race), Half Group Task (HGT), Individual Obstacles, Command Task (CT) and Final Group Task (FGT).
I’m going to shed some light on certain tips on how you can emerge as the leader of your group.
- Work on your Interpersonal Skills.
This aspect is really important yet the most overlooked one. Most of the times during the GDs, in order to prove their point, candidates turn aggressive. This should be absolutely avoided. It’s a group “discussion” not a debate. When you have something to say, put it respectfully. A leader never hurts other’s sentiments and feelings. It’s often believed that speaking first in a GD often reflects a candidate’s leadership qualities. It can but it’s not necessary. Speaking first is often challenging, since whoever speaks first decides the direction of the GD. Speak only when you know that your point will be productive in moving the discussion forward as it forms the basis.
- Learn to be an effective speaker and an effective listener.
In a GD, a candidate’s speaking and listening skills matter a lot. Be confident while you speak. Speak slowly so that your point is understood by all. Whenever you want to add on to a point which is previously said by someone else, don’t paraphrase it and repeat it again. Extract the keywords and say your point (in agreement or disagreement, whichever). Never go off the topic and while giving examples try to quote facts, instead of personal examples.
- Be supportive and encouraging.
A true leader always supports and encourages his group members. You should be supportive of other people’s ideas and views. Sometimes, you might people who are introverted and who aren’t confident in public speaking or giving their ideas and views publically. In such situations, as a leader would, you have to encourage them to speak. They are already feeling shy and maybe nervous, so don’t add on to it. Be comforting towards your group members. Try to increase and maintain everyone’s morale.
- Be confident.
I’m a big fan of this word. Confidence will literally get you anywhere in life. As I’ve mentioned in my earlier posts, confidence is a must have attitude. When one candidate in a group is confident and positive, the other members are going to easily accept his/her views and ideas. Not everyone can actually put their point forward properly, especially someone who is nervous or anxious but a confident individual will always see the opportunity and maximise the utilisation of the opportunity.
- Be creative.
Anyone can come up with a common solution to a problem but a leader will think of innovative ideas and put forward a creative and a new solution to a problem. A candidate must inculcate this habit of thinking creatively and being creative. Things which are scarce are always valued. Similarly a new and a fresh perspective presented in the group interactions will you the edge over your other group members.
- Be a team worker.
Sometimes a candidate might focus too much on himself/ herself and forget that they are a member of a group. These tasks are called group testing officer’s tasks for a reason. The assessors want to see whether you can work properly in a group or not and how much can you influence the group. Try to showcase your leadership qualities and at the same time work with every member of the group to make your group a better one. Be an active member of the group.Remember that a leader is not someone who bosses around and tried to impose their own decisions on other, but someone who leads and guides the group to better opportunities.Also Read :
- How to Cultivate Qualities of Leadership for SSB Interview
- How to Improve Your Speaking Skills for SSB
- How to Improve Your Personality for SSB Interview