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Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient

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Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient [#permalink] New post 11 Feb 2013, 03:42
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Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient given the decreasing margins on our greeting card business, we should reduce our number of employees by 10 to 20% in each of our regional facilities. This way, each facility will be forced to work more efficiently and each remaining employee will have a greater incentive to work additional hours to keep her job. With a reduction in staffing we can not only restore our profits to what they were in previous years, we can take them higher.

Which of the following would most weaken the Hallmark executive’s strategy?

(A) Because of natural fatigue, the additional hours worked by each employee could not be as productive as their base hours.
(B) Greeting card sales tend to peak between November and February, and then remain comparatively low for the rest of the year other than a Mother’s Day spike in May.
(C) The predicted boom in e-cards has not made nearly the feared dent in sales of paper cards, at least not for Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day.
(D) According to a report created by management consultants, even a marginal reduction in headcount would cripple most Hallmark facilities’ ability to function.
(E) Hallmark could also increase profits by making up a new romantic holiday; August seems open.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient give [#permalink] New post 11 Feb 2013, 04:46
The only contenders are A & D. Will go with D as it is more direct. A can be discarded due to the fact that Normal hours + something is better than normal hours + nothing.
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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient give [#permalink] New post 11 Feb 2013, 06:16
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I agree, the only confusion was between options A and D. All the other options are irrelevant.

I think option D is correct because the question has this statement: This way, each facility will be forced to work more efficiently and each remaining employee will have a greater incentive to work additional hours to keep her job. If the Executive doesn't realize that the strength will just not be enough then his plan completely falls apart.

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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient give [#permalink] New post 13 Feb 2013, 09:11
dhruvd wrote:
I agree, the only confusion was between options A and D. All the other options are irrelevant.

I think option D is correct because the question has this statement: This way, each facility will be forced to work more efficiently and each remaining employee will have a greater incentive to work additional hours to keep her job. If the Executive doesn't realize that the strength will just not be enough then his plan completely falls apart.

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How can a statement by some cosultant cripple the argument when we don't even know the validity and scope of the statement

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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient give [#permalink] New post 13 Feb 2013, 09:52
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I did not completely understand the statement you were trying to make.

But I'll try to answer from what I understand: First of all you have to accept that whatever given in the question is true and not question its validity. Also, he is not just a consultant, he is an executive of the company. That means whatever statement he makes has value. His Idea is based on the assumption that people can work more efficiently if some others are fired but what if the head count is just too less to do all the work remaining even with everyone putting in their 100%.
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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient give [#permalink] New post 13 Feb 2013, 10:37
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Yes, Choice D is the answer. Here is my explanation.

Analysis :- Hallmarks' margins are decreasing. Executive asserts that by increasing productivity hallmark would be able to restore the margin. He concludes that by reducing the workforce by 10 to 20% hallmark can increase the productivity (This is what we have to weaken) as well as the remaining workforce would get incentive to work in additional hours.
Any answer choice that states against the reduction in workforce - increase in productivity relationship would weaken the conclusion substantially.

A) Incorrect. We are discussing productivity as a whole and not that of base or additional hours. It may also be true that by achieving maximum productivity in base hours the hallmark might restore its margins.

B) hallmarks' margins are hampered and sales perhaps not. In Nov-Feb hallmark might will do the maximum sale but whether its margins would get restored by that sale? Not known. So incorrect.

C) again the same false relationship increased sales - increased margin.

D) Correct. directly breaks reduction in workforce - increase in productivity relationship.

E) This choice only suggests the alternate way to increase profits, but does not argue against the way mentioned in passage.
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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient give [#permalink] New post 13 Feb 2013, 10:54
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aditya111 wrote:
dhruvd wrote:
I agree, the only confusion was between options A and D. All the other options are irrelevant.

I think option D is correct because the question has this statement: This way, each facility will be forced to work more efficiently and each remaining employee will have a greater incentive to work additional hours to keep her job. If the Executive doesn't realize that the strength will just not be enough then his plan completely falls apart.

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How can a statement by some cosultant cripple the argument when we don't even know the validity and scope of the statement

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Dear Aditya,
Remember these fundamental rules while solving the weaken question.

1) The answer should refute only the conclusion and not any premise, evidence or fact presented in stimulus. e.g. if the conclusion is based on the fact presented as evidence, your answer can not challenge that fact however it can assert that how the fact can not be the evidence for the conclusion.

2) The answer choices are accepted as given, even if they include new information. So in our case we can take the management consultants report as true and can weaken the conclusion with that.

Regards,

Abhijit
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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient [#permalink] New post 09 Oct 2013, 07:02
The only confusion seems to be between A and D and I would try and address from what I understand.

First of all the question states that "most weaken" answer and hence one or more answer choices could be correct but we have to choose the most relevant one.

In choice A , let us assume that even though the efficiency of workers has decreased the company could still make profit.
Say for example that earlier for say 100 people the profit was coming as 100 million.
The assumption here is that reduction in efficiency has led to decrease in profit but that might not be the case.
Now we have 80 people and as for some of them the efficiency has reduced we might make a profit of 101 million but that still makes the organization more profitable.
On the other hand if B, is true if even there is marginal reduction in manforce lot of facilities would break down and the company would not be able to get work done , forget profits.

Hope this is little clear now.
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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2015, 07:45
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Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient [#permalink] New post 15 Oct 2015, 10:21
Only D directly attacks the argument here. Other options are more or less irrelevant
Re: Hallmark Executive: In order to stay lean and efficient   [#permalink] 15 Oct 2015, 10:21
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