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【BEC中级】BEC阅读名师指导连载——8

2016-07-26 17:17:34 来源:美森网校 人气:53

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  老师整理了一套BEC中级阅读的指导连载课,今天是最后一节了哦,希望对大家有帮助!

  第八课时

  PART THREE

  Questions 13-18

   Read the article below about business meetings and the questions on the opposite page.

  

  For each question 13-18, mark one letter (A,B,C or D) on your Answer Sheet for the answer you choose.

  GETTING THE MOST OUT OF MEETING

  One aspect of business life which many managers are unhappy with is the need to attend meetings. Research indicates that managers will spend between a third and a half of their working lives in meetings. Although most managers would agree that it is hard to think of an alternative to meetings, as a means of considering information and making collective decisions, their length and frequency can cause problems with the workload of even the best-organised executives.

  Meetings work best if they take place only when necessary and not as a matter of routine. One example of this is the discussion of personal or career matters between members of staff and their line and personnel managers. Another is during the early stages of a project when the team managing it need to learn to understand and trust one another.

  Once it has been decided that a meeting is necessary, decisions need to be taken about who will attend and about the location and length of the meeting. People should only be invited to attend if they are directly involved in the matters under discussion and the agenda should be distributed well in advance. An agenda is vital because it acts as a road map to keep discussion focused and within the time limited allocated. This is also the responsibility of the person chairing the meeting, who should encourage those who say little to speak and stop those who have a great deal to say from talking too much.

  At the end of a well organised meeting, people will feel that the meeting has been a success and be pleased they were invited. They will know not only what decisions were made but also the reasons for these decisions. Unfortunately, at the end of a badly organised meeting those present will leave feeling that they have wasted their time and that nothing worthwhile has been achieved.

  Much together has been given over the years to ways of keeping meeting short. One man who has no intention of spending half his working life in meeting is Roland Winterson, chief executive of a large manufacturing company. He believes that meetings should be short, sharp and infrequent. “I try to hold no more than two or three meetings a week, attended by a maximum of three people for no longer than half an hour,” he says. “They are clearly aimed at achieving a specific objective, such as making a decision or planning a strategy, and are based on careful preparation. I draw up the agenda for every meeting and circulate it in advance; those attending are expected to study it carefully and should be prepared to both ask and answer questions. Managers are best employed carrying out tasks directly connected with their jobs not attending endless meetings. In business, time is money and spending it in needless meetings that don’t achieve anything can be very costly. Executives should follow the example of lawyers and put a cost on each hour of their time and then decide whether attending a long meeting really is the best way to spend their time.”

  13. What do most managers think about meetings?

  A. Meetings take up most of their working life.

  B. Meetings allow them to monitor decision-making.

  C. Meetings prevent them from establishing a routine.

  D. Meetings are the only way they know of achieving certain objectives.

  14. According to the writer, an example of a valuable meeting is one which

  A. allows colleagues to achieve a better working relationship.

  B. requires managers to discuss staffing needs with personnel.

  C. selects a suitable group of people to work together as a team.

  D. encourages staff to present ideas on improvements in management.

  15. According to the writer the agenda is important because it

  A. is seen by everybody before the meeting.

  B. helps to give direction to the discussions.

  C. contains items of interest to all those present.

  D. shows who should speak at each stage of the meeting.

  16. The writer says that people leaving a well organised meeting will understand

  A. the reason for their invitation to attend.

  B. how the decisions taken were relevant to them.

  C. the importance of proposals under discussion.

  D. why certain courses of action were agreed upon.

  17. What does Roland Winterson say about the meetings that he organises?

  A. He aims to hold them on a regular basis.

  B. He ensures they have a definite purpose.

  C. He requires his managers to draw up the agenda.

  D. He uses them to make decisions about strategy.

  18. What is Roland Winteson’s opinion about meetings?

  A. They ban be a bad use of a manager’s time.

  B. Their importance is often underestimated.

  C. They frequently result in wrong decisions.

  D. Their effectiveness could be improved with better planning.

  答案:13.D;14.A;15.B;16.D;17.B;18.A

  PART THREE

  Questions 13-18

   Read the article below about how to avoid working long hours and the questions on the opposite page

  

  For each question 13-18, mark one letter (A,B,C or D) on your Answer Sheet, for the answer you choose.

  Morning, noon and night The long-hours culture at work

  Working an eight-hour day is a luxury for most professional people. Nowadays, the only way to guarantee an eight-hour working day is to have the kind of job where you clock on and off. Those professionals who have managed to limit their hours to what was, 20 years ago, the average do not wish to identify themselves. “I can quite easily achieve my work within a normal day, but I don’t like to draw attention to it,” says one sales manager. “People looked at me when I left at 5 o’clock. Now, I put paperwork in my bag. People assume I’m doing extra hours at home.”

  But more typical is Mark, who works as an account manager. He says, “My contract says I work from 9 until 5 with extra hours as necessary. It sounds as if the extra hours are exceptional. In fact ,my job would be enough not only for me, but also for someone else part-time. The idea of an eight-hour day makes me laugh!” He says he has thought about going freelance but realises that this doesn’t guarantee better working hours.

  Professors Cary Cooper, occupational psychologist at the University of Manchester, is the author of the annual Quality of Working Life survey. The most recent survey found that 77% of managers in Britain work more than their contracted hours, and that this is having a damaging effect on their health, relationships and productivity. Professor Cooper is critical of the long-hours culture. He says that while bosses believe long hours lead to greater efficiency, there is no evidence to support this. “In fact, the evidence shows that long hours make you ill.”

  There are, he says, steps that can be taken. One is to accept that the in-tray will never be empty. “There are always things to do. You just have to make the rule that on certain days you go home early.” Prioritising work and doing essential tasks first helps, he says. He also thinks it’s time to criticize bad employers and unreasonable terms of employment. “By all means, show commitment where necessary but when expectations are too high, people have to begin saying openly that they have a life outside of work.”

  Personal development coach Mo Shapiro agrees that communication is important. Staff need to talk to managers about the working practices within a company. Both parties should feel that the expectations are realistic and allow them to have responsibilities and interests outside work. She recongnises, however, that in many organizations the response might well be, “If you want more interests outside work, then find another job.”

  She believes that senior staff have a duty to set an example. “I recently worked for a firm of solicitors where the partners started at 7.30am. What kind of message is that to send to the staff?” She believes there is no shame in working sensible hours – in fact quite the reserve. “Some people might be in at 7.30am but will be doing very little. You can work really hard from 9 to 5 and achieve the same. If you find it difficult to achieve an eight-hour day, there is, as a last resort, the old trick of leaving your jacket on your chair and your computers switched on, even after you have left the building.”

  13. What does the writer say in the first paragraph about people who work an eight-hour day?

  A. They are reluctant to admit to this.

  B. They are disliked by their colleagues.

  C. They are limited to certain professions.

  D. They often catch up on work in the evenings.

  14. What does Mark say about his work?

  A. His main concern is job security.

  B. Too much of his time at work is wasted.

  C. The terms of his contract are misleading.

  D. He objects to being given other people’s work.

  15. What does Cary Cooper say about recent trends in the workplace?

  A. He believes that a long working day is counter-productive.

  B. He has doubts about the results of the Quality of Working Life survey.

  C. He says that employers should accept the link between working hours and safety.

  D. He argues that further research is needed into the relationship between work and health.

  16. How does Cary Cooper think people should deal with the requirements of the workplace?

  A. Obtain help in negotiating terms of employment.

  B. Let people know when demands are unreasonable.

  C. Delegate the less important work to other staff.

  D. Accept that the modern workplace is a competitive place.

  17. What does Mo Shapiro see as a problem for employees today?

  A. They lack the communication skills that modern business requires.

  B. Many employers would not regard requests for shorter hours favourably.

  C. Most employers do not want to be responsible for the professional development of staff.

  D. They have difficulties adapting to the rapid changes occurring in working practices.

  18. What does Mo Shapiro think about present working hours?

  A. In many companies senior staff need to work a long day.

  B. The best staff are efficient enough to finish their work within eight hours.

  C. There are too many staff deceiving employers about their hours of work.

  D. Top executives should use their influence to change the long-hours culture.

  答案:13.A;14.C;15.A;16.B;17.B;18.D

  PART THREE

  Questions 13-18

   Read the article below about managing a small business and the questions on the opposite page.

   For each question 13-18, mark one letter (A,B,C or D) on your Answer Sheet, for the answer you choose.

  The Difficulties Of Managing A Small Business

  Ronald Meers asks who chief executives of entrepreneurial or

  small businesses can turn to for advice.

  “The organisational weaknesses that entrepreneurs have to deal with every day would cause the managers of a mature company to panic, ”

  Andrew Bidden wrote recently in Boston Business Review. This seems to suggest that the leaders of entrepreneurial or small businesses must be unlike other managers, or the problems faced by such leaders must be the subject of a specialised body of wisdom, or possibly both. Unfortunately, neither is true. Not much worth reading about managing the entrepreneurial or small business has been written, and the leaders of such businesses are made of flesh and blood, like the rest of us.

  Furthermore, little has been done to address the aspects of entrepreneurial or small businesses that are so difficult to deal with and so different from the challenges faced by management in big business. In part this is because those involved in gathering expertise about business and in selling advice to businesses have historically been more interested in the needs of big business. In part, in the UK at least, it is also because small businesses have always preferred to adapt to changing circumstances.

  The organisational problems of entrepreneurial or small businesses are thus forced upon the individuals who lead them. Even more so than for bigger businesses, the old saying is true – that people, particularly those who make the important decisions, are a business’s most important asset. The research that does exist shows that neither money nor the ability to access more of it is the major factor determining growth. The main reason an entrepreneurial business stops growing is the lack of management and leadership resource available to the business when it matters. Give an entrepreneur an experienced, skilled team and he or she will find the funds every time. Getting the team, though, is the difficult bit.

  Part of the problem for entrepreneurs is the speed of change that affects their businesses. They have to cope with continuous change yet have always been suspicious about the latest “management solution”. They regard the many offerings from business schools as out of date even before they leave the planning board and have little faith in the recommendations of consultants when they arrive in the hands of young., inexperienced graduates. But such impatience with “management solutions” does not mean that problems can be left to solve themselves. However, the leaders of growing businesses are still left with the problem of who to turn to for advice.

  The answer is horribly simple: leaders of small businesses can ask each other. The collective knowledge of a group of leaders can prove enormously helpful in solving the specific problems of individuals. One leader’s problems have certainly been solved already by someone else. There is an organisation called KITE which enables those responsible for small businesses to meet. Its members, all of whom are chief executives, go through a demanding selection process, and then join a small group of other chief executives. They come from a range of business sectors and each offers a different corporate history. Each group is led by a “moderator”, an independently selected businessman or woman who has been specially trained to head the group. Each member takes it in turn to host a meeting at his or her business premises and, most important of all, group discussions are kept strictly confidential. This encourages a free sharing of problems and increase the possibility of solutions being discovered.


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