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Please provide feedback AWA - Olympic Foods [#permalink]
05 May 2012, 02:43
This is my first AWA composition which I have written as per template I have prepared looking at various examples.
It will be great if experts could point out mistakes, suggest improvements and provide their overall feedback and rating.
Analysis of an Issue
The following appeared as part of an annual report sent to stockholders by Olympic Foods, a processor of frozen
“Over time, the costs of processing go down because as organizations learn how to do things better, they become
more efficient. In color film processing, for example, the cost of a 3-by-5-inch print fell from 50 cents for five-day
service in 1970 to 20 cents for one-day service in 1984. The same principle applies to the processing of food. And
since Olympic Foods will soon celebrate its 25th birthday, we can expect that our long experience will enable us to
minimize costs and thus maximize profits.”
Discuss how well reasoned . . . etc.
The author concludes that Olympic Foods' long experice of 25 years will enable the organization to minimize costs and thus maximize profits. Though, at a first glance, the conclusion looks sound, but a closer analysis reveals that the arugment rests on questionable assumptions and weak analogies and is a result of hasty generalization.
First, the argument readily assumes that all the conditions affecting an organization's performance remain the same over a long period of as long as 25 years. For example, it could be possible that the market conditions may change over a span of time resulting in more competition and less profit margins even though the organization gains more experience in the particular area. The argument could have been more sound, if it had discussed the impacts of other factors as well.
Second, the arugment draws an analogy between food processing industry and film processing industry. This analgoy does not seem very logical as the processing costs may depend on entirely different factors in different industries. To illustrate, the most obvious reason of decreasing costs in film processing industry could be enhancements in technology rather than experience in the industry. Such technolgical enhancments might not have occurred in food processing industry. If the author had provided an example of an industry more closely related to food industry, the arugment would have been lot more convincing.
Finally, the arugment claims that because Olympics Foods has a long experience of 25 years in food industry, it is going to do well in future. A long experience does not necessarily mean a consistent performance and growing profits of the company. For instance, it could be possible that company has barely survived over past 25 years with minimum profit margins and may not have very good prospects in the future. If the argument had provided some evidence of company's growing performance over the past few years, the conclusion would have been more acceptable.
To sum, the argument is flawed because of the above mentioned reasons and is therefore unconvincing. It could be considerably strengthened if the author clearly mentioned all the relevant facts. In order to asses the merits of a situation, it is necessary to have the knowledge of all the contributing factors. Without this information, the arugment remains unsubstantiated and open to debate.