Wharton TBD Interview Invites / Prep
If you are unsure what is really involved in the TBD (team based discussion) or how to best prepare, see some Q&A below. I will be doing mock interviews for clients and if you are interested in a mock interview, get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org
Should I be the leader? Sometimes. The key is to strike a balance. Nobody wants to see someone dominate the conversation, yet if you sit back and let others drive everything, you don't get to showcase your talents.
Should I speak first? I tell clients not to speak first. There is not one answer as you could certainly speak first, do well and still get in. That said, if you let the conversation start, you can take time to react before contributing.
What if I disagree completely with the conversation? This is a good thing actually. One thing they are looking for is your ability to react to others and either build on or challenge their remarks. Disagreeing is ok and often helps you.
Any techniques for challenging others? The key here is to be respectful and to listen. Act like you would act in a boardroom meeting with peers and managers. If your manager says something you don't like, you may challenge him/her, right? But you'll do it respectfully. Here you want to make sure you respond to what the other person has said, say something positive about it or at least acknowledge the reason for the comment, and then introduce your spin (hopefully the better answer).
Any other advice? While I can go into more detail offline, try to ensure you stay positive throughout the conversation, make good eye contact with everyone on the team, and encourage others to participate. There is nothing better than showing you have a great idea, reflect and build upon someone else's idea, and then encourage a quieter person to contribute and make them more confident. This is not necessarily about "winning," it is about "impressing." Good luck!