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Japanese firms have achieved the highest levels of

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Manager
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Japanese firms have achieved the highest levels of  [#permalink] New post 18 Sep 2011, 23:06
Japanese firms have achieved the highest levels of
manufacturing efficiency in the world automobile
industry. Some observers of Japan have assumed that
Japanese firms use the same manufacturing equipment
(5) and techniques as United States firms but have bene-
fited from the unique characteristics of Japanese
employees and the Japanese culture. However, if this
were true, then one would expect Japanese auto plants
in the United States to perform no better than factories
(10) run by United States companies. This is not the case,
Japanese-run automobile plants located in the United
States and staffed by local workers have demonstrated
higher levels of productivity when compared with facto-
ries owned by United States companies.
(15) Other observers link high Japanese productivity to
higher levels of capital investment per worker. But a
historical perspective leads to a different conclusion.
When the two top Japanese automobile makers
matched and then doubled United States productivity
(20) levels in the mid-sixties, capital investment per
employee was comparable to that of United States
firms. Furthermore, by the late seventies, the amount of
fixed assets required to produce one vehicle was
roughly equivalent in Japan and in the United States.
(25) Since capital investment was not higher in Japan, it had
to be other factors that led to higher productivity.
A more fruitful explanation may lie with Japanese
production techniques. Japanese automobile producers
did not simply implement conventional processes more
(30) effectively: they made critical changes in United States
procedures. For instance, the mass-production philos-
ophy of United States automakers encouraged the
production of huge lots of cars in order to utilize fully
expensive, component-specific equipment and to
(35) occupy fully workers who have been trained to execute
one operation efficiently. Japanese automakers chose to
make small-lot production feasible by introducing
several departures from United States practices,
including the use of flexible equipment that could be
(40) altered easily to do several different production tasks
and the training of workers in multiple jobs.
Automakers could schedule the production of different
components or models on single machines, thereby
eliminating the need to store the buffer stocks of extra
(45) components that result when specialized equipment
and workers are kept constantly active.

1. The primary purpose of the passage is to
(A) present the major steps of a process
(B) clarify an ambiguity
(C) chronicle a dispute
(D) correct misconceptions
(E) defend an accepted approach
2. The author suggests that if the observers of Japan
mentioned in line 3 were correct, which of the following
would be the case?
(A) The equipment used in Japanese automobile plants
would be different from the equipment used in
United States plants.
(B) Japanese workers would be trained to do several
different production jobs.
(C) Culture would not have an influence on the
productivity levels of workers.
(D) The workers in Japanese-run plants would have
higher productivity levels regardless of where they
were located.
(E) The production levels of Japanese-run plants located
in the United States would be equal to those of
plants run by United States companies.

3. Which of the following statements concerning the
productivity levels of automakers can be inferred from
the passage?
(A) Prior to the 1960’s, the productivity levels of the top
Japanese automakers were exceeded by those of
United States automakers.
(B) The culture of a country has a large effect on the
productivity levels of its automakers.
(C) During the late 1970’s and early 1980’s,
productivity levels were comparable in Japan and
the United States.
(D) The greater the number of cars that are produced in
a single lot, the higher a plant’s productivity level.
(E) The amount of capital investment made by
automobile manufacturers in their factories
determines the level of productivity.

4. According to the passage, which of the following
statements is true of Japanese automobile workers?
(A) Their productivity levels did not equal those of
United States automobile workers until the late
seventies.
(B) Their high efficiency levels are a direct result of
cultural influences.
(C) They operate component-specific machinery.
(D) They are trained to do more than one job.
(E) They produce larger lots of cars than do workers in
United States factories.

5. Which of the following best describes the organization
of the first paragraph?
(A) A thesis is presented and supporting examples are
provided.
(B) Opposing views are presented, classified, and then
reconciled.
(C) A fact is stated, and an explanation is advanced and
then refuted.
(D) A theory is proposed, considered, and then
amended.
(E) An opinion is presented, qualified, and then
reaffirmed.


Please post your answers..OA will be posted once a few answers come in..
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Re: Japanese vs American autmobile [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2011, 00:35
I would go with the following,

1. D
2. E
3. E
4. D
5. C
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Archana

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Re: Japanese vs American autmobile [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2011, 01:03
Why not B in 1) Was confused between B and D though..

And Why D in 4) I marked C here..

And your 3) is wrong..OA is A..
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Re: Japanese vs American autmobile [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2011, 01:31
1,


Nothing is clarified here and I don't think we can call this ambiguity, whereas 2 misconceptions are corrected
So opted for D

4,


"Japanese automakers chose to make small-lot production feasible by introducing several departures from United States practices, including the use of flexible equipment that could be (40) altered easily to do several different production tasks and the training of workers in multiple jobs."

The above sentence shows that Japanese automobile workers are trained to do more than one job

Moreover for your answer,

"For instance, the mass-production philosophy of United States automakers encouraged the production of huge lots of cars in order to utilize fully expensive, component-specific equipment and to (35) occupy fully workers who have been trained to execute one operation efficiently."

This shows that component-specific equipment is associated with United States automakers and not Japanese automakers

3,


"When the two top Japanese automobile makers matched and then doubled United States productivity (20) levels in the mid-sixties...."

Dunno how I missed this :(
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Archana

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Re: Japanese vs American autmobile [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2011, 01:54
ArchanaAtul wrote:
1,


Nothing is clarified here and I don't think we can call this ambiguity, whereas 2 misconceptions are corrected
So opted for D

4,


"Japanese automakers chose to make small-lot production feasible by introducing several departures from United States practices, including the use of flexible equipment that could be (40) altered easily to do several different production tasks and the training of workers in multiple jobs."

The above sentence shows that Japanese automobile workers are trained to do more than one job

Moreover for your answer,

"For instance, the mass-production philosophy of United States automakers encouraged the production of huge lots of cars in order to utilize fully expensive, component-specific equipment and to (35) occupy fully workers who have been trained to execute one operation efficiently."

This shows that component-specific equipment is associated with United States automakers and not Japanese automakers

3,


"When the two top Japanese automobile makers matched and then doubled United States productivity (20) levels in the mid-sixties...."

Dunno how I missed this :(



Thanks..
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Re: Japanese vs American autmobile [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2011, 07:32
1. The primary purpose of the passage is to
(A) present the major steps of a process
(B) clarify an ambiguity
(C) chronicle a dispute
(D) correct misconceptions (Correct, it was a misconception that Japanese car makers are better because of the cultural advantage. Author proved it wrong)
(E) defend an accepted approach

2. The author suggests that if the observers of Japan
mentioned in line 3 were correct, which of the following
would be the case?
(A) The equipment used in Japanese automobile plants
would be different from the equipment used in
United States plants.
(B) Japanese workers would be trained to do several
different production jobs.
(C) Culture would not have an influence on the
productivity levels of workers.
(D) The workers in Japanese-run plants would have
higher productivity levels regardless of where they
were located. (Correct,"Some observers of Japan have assumed that
Japanese firms use the same manufacturing equipment
and techniques as United States firms but have bene-
fited from the unique characteristics of Japanese
employees and the Japanese culture"---so it they were right then D would be right)

(E) The production levels of Japanese-run plants located
in the United States would be equal to those of
plants run by United States companies.

3. Which of the following statements concerning the
productivity levels of automakers can be inferred from
the passage?
(A) Prior to the 1960’s, the productivity levels of the top
Japanese automakers were exceeded by those of
United States automakers. (Correct, "When the two top Japanese automobile makers matched and then doubled United States productivity
(20) levels in the mid-sixties"----- that means Japanese were lower in productivity in 60 than US Car maker)

(B) The culture of a country has a large effect on the
productivity levels of its automakers.
(C) During the late 1970’s and early 1980’s,
productivity levels were comparable in Japan and
the United States.
(D) The greater the number of cars that are produced in
a single lot, the higher a plant’s productivity level.
(E) The amount of capital investment made by
automobile manufacturers in their factories
determines the level of productivity.

4. According to the passage, which of the following
statements is true of Japanese automobile workers?
(A) Their productivity levels did not equal those of
United States automobile workers until the late
seventies.
(B) Their high efficiency levels are a direct result of
cultural influences.
(C) They operate component-specific machinery.
(D) They are trained to do more than one job. (Correct," Japanese automakers chose to make small-lot production feasible by introducing several departures from United States practices, including the use of flexible equipment that could be (40) altered easily to do several different production tasks and the training of workers in multiple jobs."-----Means worker are able to do several jobs)
(E) They produce larger lots of cars than do workers in
United States factories.

5. Which of the following best describes the organization
of the first paragraph?
(A) A thesis is presented and supporting examples are
provided.
(B) Opposing views are presented, classified, and then
reconciled. I will go with this
(C) A fact is stated, and an explanation is advanced and
then refuted.
(D) A theory is proposed, considered, and then
amended.
(E) An opinion is presented, qualified, and then
reaffirmed.



Please post the OA
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Re: Japanese vs American autmobile [#permalink] New post 19 Sep 2011, 10:21
OA is

1. D
2. E
3. A
4. D
5. C
Re: Japanese vs American autmobile   [#permalink] 19 Sep 2011, 10:21
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