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Talking point

Talking point
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First Published: Wed, Apr 23 2008. 11 48 PM IST

Updated: Wed, Apr 23 2008. 11 48 PM IST
With the economy growing at a robust pace, employment opportunities are multiplying, particularly in the rural sector, with companies focusing on the untapped potential there. Mint presents a fortnightly column on job prospects in the sector.
I believe that I am good at one-on-one interviews, but I tend to perform badly during group discussions that are becoming a common component of the selection process at management institutes. How should I overcome this difficulty?
You need to work on developing skills for a satisfactory performance. It is important that you listen to others carefully and then, with a perspective to maintain
flow, you may intervene by responding to comments of others. While continuing, you have a chance to divert the focus of the discussion to a more meaningful direction, if required. Try to pick key issues and once you have participated enough, you may act as a facilitator to obtain others’ views. As much as possible, try to build on the contribution of others rather than criticizing any of them. Make efforts to put your ideas across clearly and confidently without eating the last few words of your sentence. It is very important to present realistic expectations of yourself or of situations and never to exaggerate only to prove your point. Your body posture should be neutral, neither too submissive nor aggressive. With practice and keeping some of these points in mind, there is no doubt that you could be an active and successful participant in group discussions.
I am a postgraduate from the National Institute of Agricultural Extension Management, Hyderabad, and have three years’ experience in sales of agricultural inputs. I like my organization, the compensation package and work profile. However, my immediate superior has a habit of always finding fault with whatever I do. Does the situation warrant for me to leave the job and find a change?
As far as possible, you need not change the job even if your compatibility with your boss is not to your satisfaction. You will realize during the rest of your career that the most important component in your job is the profile. Everything else can be taken care of as long as the job content appeals to you. You are expected to perform well only if you like doing what you do. For some reason if the performance is short of expectation, a variety of other problems can crop up. At the same time, it is important for you to assess if there are any areas being pointed out by your boss where an improvement may be desirable. By ignoring his comments, you may be letting go an opportunity to improve your conduct. After analysing his comments, should you feel that the adverse comments actually apply to you, it may be in your self-interest to work upon changing yourself. However, if you still feel that they are primarily because of your boss’ nature, you may write them off and remain focused on your performance. In the long run, nobody can put a good man down and you need not overly worry on this account. Also, people in any organization keep changing and you never know when you may have someone else in place. Lastly, exposure to unpleasant superiors in early years will help you in appreciating your future bosses.
Ajay Guptais CEO of ruralnaukri.com. Send your career queries to askmint@livemint.com
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First Published: Wed, Apr 23 2008. 11 48 PM IST