GMAT ISSUE类作文范文-51


The presence of a competitor is always beneficial to a company. Competition forces a company to change itself in ways that improve its practices.


Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion stated above. Support your views with reasons and/or examples from your own experience, observations or reading.

Sample Essay

We ordinarily think, as the speaker does here, that the presence of competition is always healthy for business because it sparks efficiency and innovation. While competition is generally good for business in these respects, the speaker here ignores the many problems that can accrue from attempting to keep up with or beat a competitor, and that may be decidedly detrimental to a business.

Admittedly, competition among businesses can occasion all sorts of improved -practices. The need for competitive product pricing can motivate effective micro-management of production and marketing costs. Competition for market share can spark invention and innovation in product design that lead to the cutting edge of technology. External competition is known to inspire team spirit within an organization, thereby yielding greater productivity. And competition can challenge a company to streamline operations, thereby improving efficiency.

But taken too far, attempting to keep up with or beat competitors brings about detrimental results for a company. In some cases, companies compromise product quality by switching to inferior, less expensive materials in order to keep prices competitive. Other times, plant managers ignore important employee-safety measures just to save money. And companies are even known to trade off consumer safety in the interest of competition. Perhaps the paradigmatic case involved the Ford Pinto, where Ford management rejected an inexpensive retrofit that would have saved hundreds of lives in rear-end collisions, solely in order to shave a few dollars off the car's sticker price, thereby enhancing the car's competitiveness.

Competition can even bring about large-scale social change that some consider undesirable. For instance, the emergence of large, efficient factory farms has resulted in the virtual disappearance of family farming in the U.S. And it isn't clear that the factory farms always improve farming practices, in the case of the tomato, the old homegrown kind are far superior in taste and texture to the tough, under-ripe version that has been genetically engineered for machine picking in huge quantity.

In conclusion, competition frequently motivates changes that are beneficial in many ways. But competition is a double-edged sword that can also result ininferior or unsafe products and dangerous working conditions for employees. Moreover, large competitors can swallow up smaller concerns without yielding noticeably better products or practices.


GMAT ISSUE类作文范文-52


Successful individuals typically set their next goal somewhat - but not too much - above their last achievement. In this way, they steadily raise their level of aspiration.


In your opinion, how accurate is this statement? Explain, using specific reasons and examples from your reading, your own experience or your observations of others.

Sample Essay

I agree generally that setting new goals in small increments above past accomplishments is a reliable path to achieving those goals. I think anyone would be hard-pressed to find fault with this advice. Nevertheless, in some exceptional instances, a more dramatic "leap-frog" approach may be more appropriate, or even necessary, to achieve a significant goal.

The virtues of setting goals in small, easily-attainable increments are undeniable. Overwhelming challenges are reduced to readily attainable tasks. A psychological boost is afforded by each intermediate success, helping to ensure that the achiever won't become discouraged and give up. Each step in this process can raise one's level of aspiration, and in manageable proportions that make success more likely. Moreover, this approach can be used by anyone—a sedentary office worker who decides to complete the New York Marathon; a paralegal who wishes to become a surgeon; or a small business owner who aspires to become CEO of a Fortune 500 Company.

In some instances, however, the step-by-step approach is not adequate. For example, many great creative achievements—in art, music, and literature—are made not by the achiever's disciplined setting of incremental goals, but rather by a spontaneous flash of brilliance and intense creativity. Another exception to this approach is the case of the ultra-successful actor, model, or even socialite who might suddenly leap-frog to his or her goal through serendipity. Third, for those who have already achieved great things, taking baby steps toward the next goal would only frustrate them and slow them down. Suppose, for example, a recent gold medalist in the Olympic Games' 100-meter sprint wishes to become a member the football franchise that won last year's Super Bowl. What small, incremental accomplishments are needed to achieve his goal? None, aside from a phone call by his agent to the front office of the team. Admittedly, these are exceptional cases: yet they do exist.

In conclusion, setting modest but increasingly higher goals is generally good advice. Yet this approach may be inappropriate or inadequate under certain exceptional circumstances.


GMAT ISSUE类作文范文-53


The term USER FRIENDLY is usually applied to the trouble-free way that computer software moves from screen to screen, function to function. However, the term can also refer to a government office, a library, public transportation or anything designed to provide information or services in an easy, friendly way. Just as all societies have many striking examples of user-friendly services, so do they abound in examples of user friendly systems.


Identify a system or service that you have found to be either USER-FRIENDLY or USER-UNFRIENDLY. Discuss from the user’s perspective, in what way the system either is or is not easy to use and explain the consequences or effect of such a system.

Sample Essay

If one focuses on systems such as financial services and telecommunications, where emerging technologies have the greatest impact, one sees increasing user-friendliness. However, in other systems—public and private alike—inefficiencies, roadblocks, and other "unfriendly" features still abound. One such example is the U.S. health-care delivery system.

To a large extent, the user-unfriendly nature of health-care delivery stems from its close tie to the insurance industry. Service providers and suppliers inflate prices, knowing that insurance companies can well afford to pay by passing on inflated costs to the insured. Hospital patients are often discharged prematurely merely becauseinsurance fails to cover in-patient care beyond a certain amount or duration. In the extreme, patients are sometimes falsely informed that they are well or cured, just so that the facility can make room for insured patients. Insurance providers reject claims and coverage intentionally and in bad faith when the insured has suffered or is statistically likely to suffer from a terminal or other long-term and costly—illness. Insurance companies also impose extreme coverage exceptions for pre-existing conditions. Both tactics are designed, of course, to maximize insurance company profits at the expense of the system's user. Finally, new medical technologies that provide more effective diagnosis and treatment are often accessible only to the select few who can afford the most comprehensive insurance coverage.

IThe consequences of these user-unfriendly features can be grave indeed for the individual, since this system relates directly to a person's physical well-being and very life. For example, when a claim or coverage is wrongfully denied, lacking financial resources to enforce their rights, an individual customer has little practical recourse. The end result is to render health care inaccessible to the very individuals who need it most. These user-unfriendly features can be deleterious on a societal scale as well. An unhealthy populace is an unproductive one. Also, increased health-care costs place an undue burden on bread-winning adults who feel the squeeze of caring for aging parents and for children. Finally, these features foster a pervasive distrust of government, big business, and bureaucracy.

In sum, today's "point-and-click" paradigm inaccurately portrays the actual functionality of many systems, including our health-care delivery system, which is well-entrenched in self-interest and insensitivity to the needs of its users.


GMAT ISSUE类作文范文-54


Popular entertainment is overly influenced by commercial interests. Superficiality, obscenity and violence characterize films and television today because those qualities are commercially successful.


Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion. To support your views, use reasons and/or examples from your reading, your observations or your experience as a consumer of popular entertainment.

Sample Essay

Clearly, most popular films and television shows are superficial and/or include a certain amount of violence or obscenity. Just as clearly, popularity leads to commercial success. But can we conclude that these productions are overly influenced by commercial interests? Perhaps not, since some popular films and television shows are neither superficial, obscene, nor violent. Closer scrutiny, however, reveals that most such productions actually support, not disprove, the thesis that commercial interests dictate movie and television content.

One would-be threat to the thesis can be found in lower-budget independent films, which tend to focus more on character development and topical social issues than on sensationalism. Recently, a few such films have supplanted Hollywood's major studio productions as top box-office hits. Does this mean that profit potential no longer dictates the content of films. No; it simply suggests that the tastes and preferences of the movie-going public are shifting.

A second ostensible challenge to the thesis can be found in companies such as Disney, whose productions continue to achieve great popularity and commercial success, without "resort to an appeal to baser interests. Yet it is because these productions are commercially successful that they proliferate.

The only cogent challenge to the thesis is found in perennial television favorites such as "Nova." a public television show that is neither commercially supported nor influenced. However, such shows are more in the nature of education than entertainment, and for every one program like "Nova" there are several equally popular—and highly superficial—programs.

With few exceptions, then, commercial success of certain films and television shows is no accidental byproduct of popularity; it is the intentional result of producers' efforts to maximize profits.


GMAT ISSUE类作文范文-55


Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.


To what extent do you agree or disagree with the opinion expressed above? Explain your point of view by giving reasons and/or examples from your own experience, observations or reading.

Sample Essay

I agree that supervisors should under most circumstances merely tell subordinates what to do, but not necessarily how to do it. Of course, employees need adequate training in order to do a job. But beyond that, trusting employees to discover and develop their own methods for meeting a supervisor's expectations can produce surprising rewards that outweigh any pitfalls of such an approach.

First of all, restraint in directing the how-to aspect of a project signals the supervisor's confidence in an employee's intelligence and abilities. Sensing this confidence, the subordinate will often respond with his or her best work. This phenomenon lends truth to the adage that people rise to the level of what others expect from them.

Secondly, by allowing a subordinate to decide how best to attain an objective, a supervisor imparts a larger share of responsibility for the project to the subordinate. This alleviates some of the burden from the supervisor, who may have more time for other tasks as a result. At the same time, when the subordinate shares in the responsibility, he or she will probably feel more accountable for how the job turns out. The result is likely to be better job performance.

Thirdly, directing every step of a project often blocks a worker's own creativity, as well as creating animosity. Except in the training of a new worker with little or no experience, it would be naive and arrogant for any supervisor to assume there is one and only one best way--the supervisor's own way--to get a job done. A bright, competent subordinate is likely to resent being led by the hand like a child. Allowing employees to choose their own means and methods will spark their ingenuity in ways that enhance productivity now and in the future, and will foster goodwill and mutual respect in the workplace.

In sum, telling a subordinate how to do a job is rarely the best management approach. Instead, supervisors should assign tasks without directing each step. When employees are left to choose methods for completing work, they will be bolstered by the supervisor's trust, motivated to greater creativity and inclined to feel accountable for outcomes.



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