Directions: There are 2 passages in this section. Each passage is followed by some questions or unfinished statements. For each of them there are four choices marked A), B), C) and D). You should decide on the best choice and mark the corresponding letter on Answer Sheet 2 with a single line through the centre.
Nothing succeeds in business books like the study of success. The current business-book boom was launched in 1982 by Tom Peters and Robert Waterman with "In Search of Excellence". It has been kept going ever since by a succession of gurus and would-be gurus who promise to distil the essence of excellence into three (or five or seven) simple rules.
"The Three Rules" is a self-conscious contribution to this type; it even includes a bibliography of "success studies". Messrs Raynor and Mumtaz Ahmed work for a consultancy, Deloitte, that is determined to turn itself into more of a thought-leader and less a corporate repairman. They employ all the tricks of the success genre. They insist that their conclusions are "measurable and actionable"-guide to behavior rather than analysis for its own sake. Success authors usually serve up vivid stories about how exceptional business-people stamped their personalities on a company or rescued it from a life-threatening crisis. Messrs Raynor and Ahmed are happier chewing the numbers: they provide detailed appendices on "calculating the elements of advantage" and "detailed analysis".
The authors spent five years studying the behaviour of their 344 "exceptional companies", only to come up at first with nothing. Every hunch(直觉) led to a blind alley and every hypothesis to a dead end. It was only when they shifted their attention from how companies behave to how they think that they began to make sense of their voluminous material. Management is all about making difficult tradeoffs in conditions that are always uncertain and ever-changing. But exceptional companies approach these trade-offs with two simple rules in mind, sometimes consciously, sometimes unconsciously. First: better before cheaper. Companies are more likely to succeed in the long run if they compete on quality or performance than on price. Second: revenue before cost. Companies have more to gain in the long run from driving up revenue than by driving down costs. Most success studies suffer from two faults. There is "the halo (光环) effect", whereby good performance leads commentators to attribute all manner of virtues to anything and everything the company does. These virtues then suddenly become vices when the company fails. Messrs Raynor and Ahmed work hard to avoid these mistakes by studying large bodies of data over several decades. But they end up embracing a different error: stating the obvious. Most businesspeople will not be surprised to learn that it is better to find a profitable niche (缝隙市场) and focus on boosting your revenues than to compete on price and cut your way to success. The difficult question is how to find that profitable niche and protect it. There, The Three Rules is less useful.
What kind of business books are most likely to sell well?
Books on excellence.C) Books on business rules.
Guides to management. D) Analyses of market trends.
What does the author imply about books on success so far?
They help businessmen on way or another.
They are written by well-recognised experts.
They more or less fall into the same stereotype.
They are based on analyses of corporate leaders.
How does The Three Rules different from other success books according to the passage?
It focuses on the behavior of exceptional businessmen.
It bases its detailed analysis on large amount of data.
It offers practicable advice to businessmen.
It draws conclusion from vivid examples.
What does the passage say contributes to the success of exceptional companies?
Focus on quality and revenue.
Management and sales promotion.
Lower production costs and competitive prices.
Emphasis on after-sale service and maintenance.
What is the author’s comment on The Three Rules?
It can help to locate profitable niches.
B) It has little to offer to business people.
C) It is noted for its detailed data analysis.
D) It fails to identify the keys to success.
56. A 57. C 58. D 59. A 60. B
Until recently, the University of Kent prided itself on its friendly image. Not any more. Over the past few months it has been working hard, with the help of media consultants, to downplay its cosy reputation in favour of something more academic and serious.
Kent is not alone in considering an image revamp. Changes to next year’s funding regime are both forcing universities to justify charging students up to 9,000 in fees.
Nowadays, universities putting much more of a focus on their brands and what their value propositions are. While in the past universities have often focused on student social life and attractions of the university town in recruitment campaigns, they are now concentrating on more tangible attractions, such as employment prospects, engagement with industry, and lecturer contact hours, making clear exactly what students are going to get for their money.
The problem for universities is that if those benefits fail to materialise, students notice. That worries Rob Behrens, chief executive of the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA), which deals with student complaints. "Universities need to be extremely careful that … they describe the reality of what’s going to happen to students," he says. "Because competition is going to get greater for attracting students, there is a danger that universities will go the extra mile."
One university told prospective engineering students they would be able to design a car and race it at Brands Hatch, which never happened, he says. "If universities spent as much money on handling complaints and appeals appropriately as they spend on marketing, they would do better at keeping students, and in the National Student Survey returns," he says.
Ongoing research by Heist tracking prospective 2012 students suggests that they are not only becoming more sophisticated in thinking about what they want from a university, but are also spending more time researching evidence to back up institutional claims.
Hence the growing importance of the student survey and league tables. From next September, all institutions will also be expected to publish on their websites key information sets, allowing easier comparison between institutions - and between promises and reality - of student satisfaction levels, course information, and the types of jobs and salaries graduates go on to.
As a result, it is hardly surprising that universities are beginning to change the way they market themselves. While the best form of marketing for institutions is to be good at what they do, they also need to be clear about how they are different from others.
And it is vital that once an institution claims to be particularly good at something, it must live up to it. The moment you position yourself, you become exposed because you have played your joker, and if you fail in that you are in trouble.
61. What was the University of Kent famous for?
A. Its comfortable campus life.
B. Its up-to-date course offerings.
C. Its distinguished teaching staff.
D. Its diverse academic programs.
62. What are universities trying to do to attract students?
A. Improve their learning environment.
B. Upgrade their campus facilities.
C. Offer more scholarships to the gifted.
D. Present a better academic image.
63. What does Rob Behrens suggest universities do in marketing themselves?
A. Publicise the achievements of their graduates.
B. Go to extra lengths to cater to students’ needs.
C. Refrain from making promises they cannot honour.
D. Survey the expectations of their prospective students.
64. What is students’ chief consideration in choosing a university?
A. Whether it promises the best job prospects.
B. Whether it is able to deliver what they want.
C. Whether is ranks high among similar institutions.
D. Whether is offers opportunities for practical training.
65. What must universities show to win recruitment campaigns?
A. They are positioned to meet the future needs of society.
B. They are responsible to students for their growth.
C. They are ever ready to improve themselves.
D. They are unique one way or another.
【答案】61. A. 62. D 63. C 64. B 65. D