focus on business english

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............................................................................... 4
Employment .................................................................................................. 5
Quality ......................................................................................................... 10

then invite the best candidates to atte
An organizations capacity to identif
ested in them as people but only as hi
gh-performing commodities, it is hardly be
surprising if their loyalty be minimal.
On the other hand, if an organisaton does
invest in its people, it is much more lik
ely to win loyalty from them and to create
a community of talent and high perfo

ry of $17,000plus benefits
I enclose my resume for your consideration
1997 2000: University of
I am looking for a more stimulating environment and
your company offers this
Training will be given but ba
sic word processing skills
1994-1997: The Biscuit Company, London Manager
responsible for 22 staff
The successful candidates will be
expected to take up the
1. headhunting?
3. fast-tracking certain employeers?

What are some of the qu
ality problems that ca
n occur when you buy a
in which they most probably happened.
p quality products through continuous
6. Many business people agree that a good
is just as important as a product

l Times and answer the questions.
South Korean carmakers have long b
een the subject of jokes about poor
quality in the US. But yesterday they
won the endorsement of US car buyers

ty survey. The JD Power & Associates
the number of problems reported by a custom
er in the first 90 days of new ve-
hicle ownership, showed that Hyundai
and Kia Motors had on average reduced
such problems by 57 percent over the last
six years. The number of problems re-
ported on average for the tw
o carmakers dropped from 272
ad problems per
100 vehicles in 1998
to 117 this year according to
the survey, which involved
51,000 vehicle owners.
five problems per
vehicles and are ahead of
General Motors, Ford and Chrys-
ler, by six problems, while traili
ng the Japanese by six problems per
A decade ago, as Korean
manufacturers struggled wi
th a universally poor reputa-
tion for vehicle quality, no-one would have predicted they could not only keep
pace, but actually
pass domestic
carmakers and other fore
ign imports in terms of
initial quality, said Joe Iv
ers, Executive Director of
quality/customer satisfaction
at JD Power, based in California.
the fewest problems reported. How-
ever, GM, Ford and Chrysler had more
than the industry average of 119 problems
vehicles for the second year runni
ng. GMs Cadillac luxury brand and the
Jaguar marque owned by Fo
rd both narrowed the quality
gap with Lexus, Toyo-
tas luxury offering that is the biggest seller in the segment.
Like last year, the study also s
howed that carmakers across the
o board are
make up ground lost for years to Toyo
ta and Honda. Initial quality problems
dropped industry-wide by
percent from last year
. However, the Hummer,
GMs massive sport utility vehicle inspir
ed by the US armys Humvee, came bot-
tom of the list of 37 vehicle brands in
terms of the number of
problems reported,
for the second year running.
From the
1. Read through the whole article and
match the figures with the things
57 percent a) the nu
2, 272 problems per 100 Hyundai
117 and Kia cars this year
51,000 b) the number of brands
2nd covered in the survey
119 c) the numb
er of vehicle
37 owners surveyed
the average number of quality
problems per 100 new cars
the number of quality problems per 100 Hyundai and Kia
cars six years ago
the position of Hyundai
the fall in the number of qu
ality problems with Hyundai
e last six years
essions in italics true or false?
Korean cars
of US car buyers
means that US car
buyers still dont like Hyundai and Kia cars.
jumped ahead
Some carmakers had become closer in quality to
an effort
US carmakers are trying to
in relation to Toyota
and Honda.
The Hummer is
of any vehicle in the survey.
1. Does the survey confirm your opinions of different car makes? Why /
2. Make a list of brands for anothe
r product category (e.g. washing ma-
rank them for
1. Farms are now more
1. What four approaches does Cognosis use to analyse a
2. How many different business
character types does Cog-
3. What three things do compan
ies deal with differently, ac-
2. Listen to the second part of th
e interview. Tick the sentences below
which are true, according to Richard,
and correct those which are false.
1. The hardest way to change the character of a business is to
merge it with another company.
2. When Guiness and Gra
ial Times and answer the questions.
When the worlds biggest soft drink
tactics, investors should ask why. Coca
-Cola, which has traditionally promoted

itself via the Coke brand, using slogans su
ch as Coke is it, now wants to inform
consumers that Coke is not the only dr
ink it sells. Its most recent campaign,
called Make every drop count, says: Y
ouve always known us as Coca-Cola,
the soft drink. Now its time you kne
the company.
when consumers are ditching foods and dr
inks that are perceived as unhealthy
(such 20 as sugary fizzy drinks and salty cr
isps) for products that appear to offer
Coke is using the new campaign to im
press upon consumers the fact that it
sells all kinds of drinks,
including bottled water, juices
and teas. The campaign is
important for the company, because it risks losing money if it does not sell the 30
Analysts say that growing demand for he
althier kinds of f
oods and drinks is
not a fashion, but a long-term trend that
Companies which benefit are those th
at already produce the kinds of prod-
ucts consumers want, or companies that
are taking steps to adapt existing prod-
ucts. These include Danone, the French comp
any, as well as Swiss food company
nutritional foods a core strategic focus.
took the juice drink Sunny D (previously
known as Sunny Delight) off its shelves
after ending its customers did not want to buy.

to change, as healthy foods
b). Coke needs to info
whole product range.
mpanies do not change,
they will find it very difficult to survive.
d). If customers fail to recognise Cokes whole
financial problems.
r healthy products are

g). Many companies are benefiting from a bigger
2. Match the terms (1-8) to
their definitions (a-e).
seen or believed to be
Make someone
understand something
Perceive das
Change or modify
doing badly, failing

1. Do you have training schemes in your country?
2.What benefits do you think there are for the employee of training
3. What are the advantages of work
ing your way up through a company?
1. Write one word in each gap to f
ill in the text. You may choose to use
with from in as for at
My name is Jean Wilson and I have just started working
a bank. I gradu-
ated... Edinburg University last y
ear with a degree ..Business and Man-
agement. Now I am going to train . an
accountant. I think I will do well be-
cause I am good .figures and I am
skilled computers. I think that
training . specific job will be more
interesting than the general education
I got at university.
1. Everyone should stay in full-time
until they are at least 18
(school / education).
2. Of course the qualifications are
important but they are not everything
4. Last year we spent over $ 50,
000 on management ..(experience / de-
4.1 Dr Simon Kingston works for the
International executive search con-
sultants Heidrick and Struggles. Listen
to the interview w
ith him and answer
1. What is common in the car
eers of successful people?
2.What distinguishes really successful
people from those who are average in
their professions?
3.What qualities does Lord Brown at BP demonstrate?

One common theme in the careers of a lot
of successful people is an .
.(1) of the individuals own ..
.. .(2). This allows them
to (3) the sort of organisations in
which they will work. It also allows
them to .. (4) but appropriat
ely to opportunities that are unplanned
that present themselves.
2. Read the two articles from the Fi
answer the ques-
changed, so has the attracti
on. Graduates have to be le
banking, says Terry Jones of the Associa
tion of Graduate Career Advisory Ser-
vices. They think first about the investme
nt banks o or accountancy - they think
they used to be. Staffare much more
concerned with selling products and finan-
cial services, and much of
the customer contact has m
oved to big call centres or
However, the banks dont feel the sa
me way. 'We are looking for people
who are customer driven, who can form
good working relationships and lead
sales teams, says John Morewood, seni
or manager for graduate recruiting at
HSBC. We look for graduates who have
had experience of working with cus-
tomers HSBC is typical of the high-str
schemes. The executive mana
gement scheme is a two-year development pro-
gramme that aims to put graduates into
30 every year. These people have the poten
tial to go very high, says Mr More-
wood. We are looking for strategic thinkers.
The second scheme, which is more c
much earlier.
From the

career (line 2) means people
call centre
(line 21) is where customers can
it is not considered to be very important.
can make decisions quickly.
are able to make top-level decisions.

Mike Turner, chief executive of BAE
Systems, Europes
biggest defence
company, and a member of
the Apprenticeships Task Fo
rce, is a prime example
of how starting at the bottom of the corporate ladder can lead to a top job. I be-
gan my working life as an apprentice, sa
id Mr Turner, who ' argues that appren-
ticeships remain one of the most cost- ef
fective ways of filling skill shortages, as
well as developing mana
According to the task forces report,
published today, BAE expects to save
up to lm a year by training apprentices rath
workers, as apprenticeships cost 25 per cent less than training non-
It is much more attractive to recru
it young people as apprentices, as re-
cruitment costs are lower, staff turnover
is lower and apprentices quickly identi-
fied with company values, ac
cording to the task force.
, the telecommunica-
tions group, for example,
over 1,300 per apprentice
per annum when compared to

Companies, even in indus
tries such as constructio
n and engineering, where
training costs were high, found that young
people in the later years of their ap-
prenticeships were making a high contribut
ion relative to their
wage costs, said
Honda had reported that
another car manufacturer. Apprentices
by contrast quickly understood their
(Hondaj )company values
Apprenticeships were also a cost- e
ffective way of replacing an ageing
sfer of knowledge, Xerox, the office
equipment group, told the task force
From the
1. Answer these questions.
2. How much does BAE expect to
3. What three major advantages of r
ecruiting apprentices
4.How much did
5.When do apprentices make a produc
tive contribution to a company?
prime a). life
corporate b). shortage
working c). value
skill d). ladder
staff e). turnover
company f). example
1. Do you think experience on the job is more important than qualifications?
2. . Is it important for bank managers
have a degree from a good university?
Well, what usually happens is that an
employer will advertise a vacancy or
to make sure that our customers require
ments are very clearly understood, and to
ensure that at every stage in the guests
journey through our hote
ls, we are able to
address our guests needs smoothly, easily and efficiently.
I How should quality improvements be measured?
MA Well, as a general gui
de, Id say quality improvements should be meas-
ured consistently over a period of time,
and very accurately, so that everybody
believes in the reports and the figures that
are circulated round an organisation.
But in three specific ways
, we at Hilton measure the
quality of our performance.
Every year we contact thousands of guest
s to understand just how satisfied they
are with all the important areas in our bu
RB Understanding the character or pers
onality of a business is important be-
cause it shapes and defines everything
the organization does and can do. So we
use a combination of four
approaches. First, we study the tone and styleof the
companys communications. Second, we
interview the compa
in depth. Third, we conduc
t research, more broadly,
across the companys staff
and its customers. And finally, well anal
yse the companys internal documents.
That provides insight into how the busine
ss talks to itself. And when weve got
that sort of input we can classify a busin
ess as one of sixteen distinct character
types. And these handle aspects of cha
nge, innovation and relating to customers
in very different ways.
(I = Interviewer, RB = Richard Brown)
I Can you give an example of how a
business changed its organization and
RB Yeah. Many businesses try to change
their organization their culture
I What advice would you give to some
one planning an ambitious business
SK I think there isnt one single patte
rn for success in a business career. But
a lot of successful people. One of those is an honest understanding of the individ-
uals own strengths and weak
nesses, and that allows th
em, I think, both to plan
the sort of organisations in which they
will work and which they are likely to
succeed; but also, very importantly, allows
them to react rapidl
to opportunities that are unplanned that pr


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