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How to crack XAT Decision Making – Part II

In the previous post ,we discussed how Decision Making can be the undoing of XAT aspirants and tried to understand the nature of questions that come up on the section.

We took up two sets from the Decision Making section of a past XAT and discussed a structure to answer DM questions. In this post, we shall look at the remaining questions from that paper.


SET 3: Information + Number based Business Set

Answer questions on the basis of information given in the following case.

A few years back Mr.Arbit and Mr.Boring started an oil refinery business. Their annual earning is currently just 50,000 million rupees. They are now exploring various options to improve the business. Mr.Xanadu, a salesperson from Innovative Technology Solutions (ITS), is trying to sell a new oil refinery technology to Mr.Arbit and Mr.Boring. This technology could potentially enhance their annual earning to 150,000 million rupees within a year. But they have to make one-time investment of 100,000 million rupees to implement the technology. If the technology is not successful, the investment would be lost. Mr.Arbit and Mr.Boring are discussing possible risks of the investment.

Mr.Arbit is enthusiastic about this investment idea but Mr.Boring is a little sceptical. This impasse makes them approach a consultant. The consultant makes some observations. Which of the following observations, made by the consultant, might reduce Mr.Arbit’s enthusiasm for the new investment idea?

  1. Investment is warranted only when benefits outweigh costs.
  2. Technology investments give higher earnings in future.
  3. Investment in technology leads to reduction of costs in the long run.
  4. Technology risks can be controlled.
  5. Business is all about taking risky decisions.

If you just read the case and go into the first question you will be left with two options. But before that who is take stakeholder from whose perceptive the options need to be evaluated? It is Mr.Arbit.

Arbit is enthusiastic about the investment we must choose an option which will dampen it.

(2), (3) & (4) highlight positive sides of the investment and hence will not dampen his spirits. We are left with (1) and (5). Unless we go back to the case we are better off tossing a coin at this point.

This is a business case but with very few numbers. Just so that the understanding is clear

  • one-time cost – 100,000 million guaranteed to be incurred
  • annual increase in business – 100,000 provided it is successful

So for the first year, the cost is equal to the increase in revenue. From the next year onwards, the annual increase in revenue is 100,000, but only if it is successful.

(1) will affect Mr.Arbit’s enthusiasm adversely since it points out that investment should be done only if benefits outweigh costs. In this case for the first year, it is a no-profit, no-loss situation but only if the business succeeds.

Since there is no probability given about the chances of the business succeeding this option should cast doubts in Mr.Arbit’s mind. Also, the statement is phrased negatively — warranted only if.

(5) is something that Mr.Arbit is aware of and given his enthusiasm he might be willing to take the risks since the statement is phrased positively — business is all about taking risks.


In order to sell the technology to Mr. Arbit and Mr. Boring, Mr. Xanadu is thinking of five possible sales pitches. Which of the following sales pitches would reduce uncertainties the most for Mr. Arbit and Mr. Boring?

  1. All other competitors are aggressively investing in risky technologies.
  2. If the technology succeeds, the annual earnings would grow 3 times from the next financial year and they would be able to recover the invested money within 1 year.
  3. Preliminary studies indicate that success rate of the technology is 85%.
  4. The R&D team of ITS is working to counter any possible downside of the technology.
  5. Business is all about taking risky decisions.

The biggest uncertainty is not about the benefits but about the probability of success. Option (3) is clearly giving the success rate from which we can calculate that for Year 1 the net return will be 100000(.85) – 100000 = -15000 million. But from year 2 onwards it will be +100000 million.

While (1) can be considered it still does not reduce uncertainty the way (3) does, hence 3.


Mr.Arbit and Mr.Boring did not invest in the new technology, but the new technology is a big success. Repentant, they are now estimating the additional amount they would have earned (i.e. forgone earnings) had they invested in the new technology. However, the two owners differed on the expected lifespan of the new technology. Mr.Arbit expected lifespan to be 5 years, whereas, Mr.Boring expected it to be 2 years. After the technology gets outdated, the earnings from the business would drop back to 50,000 million rupees.

What would be the difference between two expected foregone earnings after 5 years of the technology investment, if yearly earnings are deposited in a bank @10%, compounded annually?

Note: Forgone Earnings = (Earnings from business with new technology) – (Earnings from business without new technology)

  1. 231,200 million rupees
  2. 331,000 million rupees
  3. 400,510 million rupees
  4. 431,000 million rupees
  5. 464,100 million rupees

It might be tempting to quickly assume that solving this question will involve a lot of calculation and hence letting it go. But as we discussed during our CAT sessions always try to visualize how the calculation will pan out.

They are asking you to calculate the difference between Mr.Arbit and Mr.Boring’s projections at the end of 5 years.

There will not be any difference till the end of two years since both are projecting the same numbers.

The difference is from Year 3 to Year 5 when Mr.Arbit is projecting the annual increase of Rs.100000 million to continue whereas Mr.Boring is not, which is nothing but 300000 if we do not calculate interest.

Even if we do it will still remain in the 300000s. Hence, (2).

This would have taken another 10-15 minutes and at the end of 30 minutes, you should have 5-6 marks.

You should know that at this point you are halfway there. In the next 10 minutes, you need to answer another 3-4 questions and move on to another section.


SET 4: Business + HR Set

Answer questions on the basis of information given in the following case.

Life saving Pharmaceuticals (LSP) is India-based Pharmaceuticals Company. Their business mostly revolves around a couple of generic drugs and a few patented drugs. LSP operates in 30 odd countries and more than 50% of their sales volume is from outside India.

If more than 50% of their sales volume is from generic drugs, which of the following options is definitely correct? (Note : All percentages figures are with respect to total sales volume)

  1. If sales volume of patented drugs in India is 43%, the sales volume of generic drugs in India will be less than 43%.
  2. If the sales volume of generic drugs in foreign countries is at least 24%, the sales volume of patented drugs in India will be above 24%.
  3. If the sales volume of patented drugs in India is 54%, the sales volume of generic drugs in foreign countries will be above 54%.
  4. If the sales volume of patented drugs in India is 29%, the sales volume of generic drugs in foreign countries will be above 29%
  5. If the sales volume of generic drugs in India is at least 60%, the sales volume of patented drugs in foreign countries will be above 60%.

This is not a tough question but a tricky one. Even if one understands logic it can get confusing to do it over 5 options.

It becomes easier if one visualises the whole situation as a 2 by 2 matrix

INDIA

ABROAD

GENERIC

A

B

> 50%

PATENTED

C

D

< 50%

< 50%

             > 50%

For each case, you have to substitute values of A or B in the grid and see of the inferences must be true. The answer is option 4.


Mr. Sinha, a senior executive of LSP, observes that their business in India is not vibrant. LSP faces stiff competition from Indian and global players, except in rural areas. Interestingly, most of their sales in the rural area are from cough syrup, used as sedatives by teenagers. Mr.Sinha is planning the following actions to improve business in the long run.

I. Invest in the development of new drugs.

II. Increase sales of cough syrup in the rural markets.

III.Try and cut costs.

IV. Recruit more medical representatives in rural areas.

Which of the following sequences is best arranged in the descending order of appropriateness?

  1. I, III, II
  2. II, I, III
  3. II, III, I
  4. IV, II, III
  5. IV, III, I

Situation

  • rural sales promising
  • cough syrup sales promising
  • rest of the business in India is not promising

Criteria

  • improve the business in the long run

None of the options has all four statements. As discussed earlier it is best to go with the elimination approach.

Measure each statement for its direct impact on the criteria based on the situation.

Statements II & III are related capitalizing on the positive rural markets and the product that is doing well there.

Statement IV is related to reducing costs and improving profitability.

Statement I talks about investing, a cost when the overall situation is not positive, and is best avoided. All options except (4) have statement I and can be eliminated. Hence, (4).

While it looks straightforward for this perspective it still has areas that might trick you. For example, cough syrup sales when the bulk of it is used for the wrong purposes. In that case option (5) makes sense.

When it comes to a DM question, when in doubt it is always best to leave.


Mr.Rastogi, HR head of LSP, is contemplating transferring Mr.Jose, from India to their Luxembourg office. Mr.Jose’s wife is also with the HR department of LSP. The couple is expecting their first child within the next four months and hence they want to be together. Mr.Rastogi is wondering whether Mr.Jose would accept the transfer. If he doesn’t, Mr.Rastogi would have to send a less competent person for this job as early as possible. The office in Luxembourg is very important for the company’s future. It is at its nascent stage and does not yet have an HR department. Hence, it is not possible to transfer Mrs.Jose to Luxembourg.

Which of the following options would be most appropriate, from the organization’s perspective, to resolve the issue?

  1. Giving a salary hike to Mr.Jose with a promise to transfer Mrs.Jose to Luxembourg in the near future.
  2. Giving Mrs.Jose option to work from home while in Luxembourg so that she can be with Mr.Jose.
  3. Giving Mr.Jose option to work from India for the time being so that he can be with Mrs.Jose in India.
  4. Giving a salary hike to Mr.Jose to compensate for Mrs.Jose’s salary so that she can join Mr.Jose at Luxembourg, even with a loss of pay.
  5. Asking Mr.Jose to accept the offer right now but give him up to six months to join Luxembourg office.

As you can see this is a set where the data is not given upfront but is incrementally presented in every question, making it really tough to choose or leave the set without going through the question in entirety. One has to hence do the situation analysis for each question.

In such cases it is best to directly write put down the criteria:

  • Jose should go there as soon as possible
  • Jose needs to with his wife for the next 4 months

As you can see there are two stakeholders in this case:

  • Jose
  • Firm

So the decision should maximize the return for both stakeholders.

  1. Does not meet Jose’s criteria: his concern is not money but being here for the birth of his child hence this option can be rejected.
  2. Meets Jose’s criteria of being close to his wife, the firm also gets to send its best employee there.
  3. Does not meet the firm’s criteria of needing Jose in Luxembourg at the earliest.
  4. Meets Jose’s criteria but increases the firm’s costs substantially.
  5. Does not meet the firm’s needs of sending a competent person there asap.

Only option 2 ensures that both Mr.Jose and his wife will move there asap.


Mr. Khan used to work as the Vice President of LSP India. However, he had resigned from LSP India for a better job in New York. In the meantime, his wife was promoted to head the HR of LSP India. Mrs.Khan had struggled hard to reach this position and was quite popular and respected within the organization. Mrs.Khan was contemplating whether she should give up her career and join him in New York. Mrs.Khan is considering the following actions:

I. Take a break for the time being and focus on personal life. Given her reputation, she can always get back to the same job, if required.

II. Go to New York, on leave without pay for two months to help Mr.Khan settle down. After that, she can come back and resume her responsibility in LSP India.

III. Request Mr.Khan to look for an equivalent job in India.

IV. Resign from LSP India, join Mr.Khan in New York, and look for a similar job there.

V. Request LSP India for a similar position in LSP USA and follow Mr.Khan to New York.

Which of the following sequence of actions can be immediately taken by Mrs.Khan to maintain her work-life balance?

  1. I & II
  2. I & III
  3. I & IV
  4. II & V
  5. III & V

The main stakeholder in this question is Mrs.Khan so very option should be evaluated from her perspective of achieving work-life balance.

Criteria:

  • Wants to be with her husband
  • Does not want to leave this role that she has earned

Statement I does not solve the crisis by providing a solution, it just postpones it, and hence should not be part of any sequence.

Statement II does not meet any criteria since it is nowhere mentioned that Mr.Khan needs help to settle down.

So if we look at options without I and II, we are left only with option 5.

In option 5 the problem will be solved if one of the two things happens

  • Mr.Khan finds a job here
  • company agrees to transfer her to the USA

So in terms of probability option (5) is better.

As a set, this one is a toughie. It is a tough call whether this needs to be done or left.

Since you would have already answered 5-6 questions, it is best to not attempt tricky questions and quickly move on to hunt for easier questions.


SET 5: Information-based Business Set

Answer questions on the basis of information given in the following case.

Mohan’s was a popular fast-food joint at Connaught Place, Delhi. Initially Mohan handled his business alone. His sons, Ram and Kishan, joined the business after graduation from college. Ram was entrepreneurial in nature. Subsequently, another branch of Mohan’s was opened in Panipat. Mohan had chosen Ram to head the Panipat branch. Though Ram increased sales in short time, he had stopped using premium quality organic vegetables, the speciality of Mohan’s. Mohan and Kishan were not happy with his way of doing business.

Now, the foremost challenge for Mohan was to sort out this issue with Ram. Mohan knew that replacing Ram with Kishan was difficult as Kishan did not want to leave Delhi. However, giving a freehand to Ram might have long term negative consequences. Mohan was confused about the future of course of actions.

The case like other ones is easy enough to comprehend and seems ripe to take a shot at. Remember most cases will evoke the same reaction.

Do not psychologically commit to a case. Move ahead on a question-to-question basis rather than a case-to-case basis.

Mohan sought the help of five consultants, who give the following opinions:

I. Organic vegetables might be a big success at Connaught place but awareness about organic vegetables is low among Panipat customers.

II. The Connaught place model can be implemented in Panipat provided the business is prepared to face the consequences.

III. Many high-end restaurants in Panipat use organic vegetables. So, using organic vegetables will not be a differentiating factor.

IV. Selling prices of their dishes in Panipat are significantly lower. Using organic vegetables will bring down profits.

V. Premium quality organic vegetables are not easily available in Panipat.

Which of the following set of options would support Ram’s argument of not using organic vegetables?

  1. I,III,IV
  2. II,IV,V
  3. I,III,IV,V
  4. II,III,IV,V
  5. All of the above

The stakeholder in this question is Ram and the criterion is that the statement supports his decision to not use organic vegetables.

Statements IV & V are most supportive since they provide business reasons for not using organic vegetables — lower margins and poor supply — and hence should be present.

I & III both highlight the fact that using organic vegetables is not going to give them any edge over their competitors, hence even these should be present.

Only II does not give any reason against organic vegetables and is very generic in nature and can be ignored. Hence (3).

Mohan sought feedback from a few of his businessmen friends, who were familiar with both the branches. Here is what they said:

Businessman 1: Customers of Connaught place and Panipat are very different.

Businessman 2: Customers in Panipat are extremely happy with Ram’s behaviour.

Businessman 3: Panipat branch does not use the same quality of ingredients but maintains good hygiene and taste.

Businessman 4: Who knows, tomorrow the customers of Panipat might also appreciate what Connaught place customers appreciate today!

If Mohan thinks all these are valid concerns, which of the following actions would be best for the business?

  1. Training Kishan to replace Ram in a few months.
  2. Not worrying about ingredients as long as the business grows.
  3. Bringing Ram to Connaught place branch.
  4. Naming the Panipat branch as ‘Ram’s’, and changing it back to Mohan’, when needed.
  5. Asking Kishan to run the Panipat branch.

This is a tricky question and would take up time. Options (1), (3) and (5) are not viable as it would seem to punish Ram who apart from not using organic vegetables does not seem to have put a foot wrong as far as revenues are concerned, asking someone to change strategy is very different from replacing the. Between (2) and (4) it is tough to choose, I would rather skip this question.

And come to think of it the best plan of action is not even mentioned — talk to Ram about the strategic path to move ahead. If the case stated that speaking to Ram is no use and he has flatly refused to change this strategy, then the case become entirely different.

Ideally what should be done is this:

  1. If the brand is known for organic then the brand should use organic everywhere since that is the basic premise of what a brand is — a promise of a product or service consistent with the claims made. Having non-organic products in Panipat might in the long-run hurt the Delhi brand as well.
  2. Have a chat with Ram about point 1 and the long-term implications of the same.
  3. If Ram has sound reasons to believe that Panipat is not yet ready, then change the name to Ram’s and run it, and open a Mohan’s when the time is right.
  4. If Ram agrees with point 1 and the branch is ready for a transition then all is well.

Both 3 or 4 are win-win outcomes.

After discussing with a few customers, Mohan realised that compromising on the quality of ingredients at Panipat branch may not be a good idea but at the same time he also realised that Panipat branch had grown fast. He was contemplating the following five actions.

Which of the following actions would be the best for the future of his business?

  1. Creating awareness campaign for organic vegetables in Panipat.
  2. Mohan himself should look after the Panipat branch.
  3. Close down the Panipat branch.
  4. Send Kishan to Panipat branch and bring Ram to Connaught place permanently.
  5. Hire a new person to run the Panipat branch.

Another tricky question; options (3), (4) & (5) are ruled out since it would create a HR problem since Ram is doing well.

Since the additional information on this question says that after talking to customers Mohan realised that compromising on ingredients is not a good idea, it is best that he starts creating awareness for organic vegetables since that is what the brand is known for.


We had discussed that reading speed is going to be crucial to cracking XAT and this section clearly highlights why. It is not possible to leave sets without reading individual questions.

We have already done 5 sets and there are two more to go. We will take up the remaining two sets in the next post and wrap up this series on Decision Making with a round-up of how to approach the section.

 

39 Comments

  1. Saurabh bhargava says

    In the last question if Mohan is himself looking Panipat branch means nearly same as option 4 or 5. Also, If people become aware of organic vegetable ultimately Ram will have to use it in ingredient, So for long run option 1 woulf suffice.
    What is your opinion sir?

    Like

    • Saurabh Bhargava says

      Also for penultimate ques I think option 2 is better as the Businessman 4 says who knows. Also saying the name will impact the branding of product

      Like

      • Yeah, if one has to mark one can mark 2 but as I wrote, I would rather skip it; sometimes it is better to let go of one’s ego and save a negative mark.

        Like

      • Shubham Gupta says

        Isn’t option 2 unethical as far as customers are concerned. In such situations, we should check ethical viewpoint or not ??

        Like

    • Hi Saurabh,

      Mohan going there himself is not the same as sending others since it will not create an HR issue with Ram.

      So the call is between 1 and 2, and yes in the long run (1) might be a better option, since the question says customers felt compromising is not a bad idea.

      All the best!

      Like

    • Shubham Gupta says

      Also in Set 4, considering selling cough syrup is unethical but beneficial for business. So in such cases, how to choose

      Like

      • Hi Shubham,

        I think you I think one has to be very clear as to what ethical means with reference to legal.

        Ethics are what govern our relationships with others in society, unlike morality which is completely personal. So unethical things will involve — lying to others for personal gain, influencing a decision-making process through getting in a word via a powerful agent, extending favours or bribing under the table in return for favourable deals or outcomes.

        Selling cough syrup does not involve any of these and it is perfectly legal since it is not banned by the law of the land.

        People get high using paint thinners, kerosene and any other substance that they can use to get high, so there is nothing unethical about selling these. What is unethical is saying it will cure cough while it won’t or increasing the dosage of a chemical to get people hooked to it while not informing people about the formulation etc.

        So be careful when you start deciding to solve every question based on ethics unless you are sure whether it is an ethical violation or not.

        All the best!

        Like

      • Shreya says

        Hi Tony! The question involving LSP has really confused me. I’ve read many sources and all of them have very different reasoning. For instance, you mentioned that we can eliminate the option ‘Investing in new drugs’ outright, but I’ve come across several other explanations which are in direct opposition (i.e. they favour option 1 the most). PFB

        Question asked: Long term consequences
        Statement I is the best option if we consider the long term
        prospect of the business. Statement II is clearly unethical and
        unethical actions might have some short term benefits but
        are least appropriate for long term. Statement III can boost
        performance in the near future. Statement IV might also have
        a negative connotation if we assume that LSP is recruiting
        more employees to sell cough syrup in the rural areas.
        Thus, Statement I should come first if we consider ‘to improve
        business in the long run’. Moreover, Statement II should not
        come before Statement I as well as III from the long run
        perspective).
        Hence, Option A is the correct answer from the available
        choices.

        This also makes sense. What is your take on this explanation?

        Like

      • Hi Shreya,

        There will always be a mismatch on a few questions on DM since after a point it is not an exact science.

        Statement II being unethical is not as easy as an open and shut case. People do various things to get high or sedated that were designed for that purpose right from cough syrups to paint thinners. This does not mean that the firms stop manufacturing these products, even maintaining current production levels will mean that it is getting used for the wrong purposes. And if they cut production can they ensure that it is being sold only to the right people. What is important to solve the problem is that it be sold only with a prescription but that is a step that has to be taken by the government. The more the brand gets sold in rural markets as a cough syrup, it will displace all other brands of cough syrup and the profits from the same can be used to foray into other products may be cough lozenges, medications for cold. Some might bring the US situation of the opioid crisis but that is not comparable since opioids led to a huge number of deaths and there was a huge concern raised over the same, unlike cough syrups. If we really take this as unethical then the worst thing that can one do to anyone’s health is feed people chips and cola and other unhealthy fast foods, and the worst is these products being advertised on channels that are targeted at children, and all firms should stop selling these, which is why the huge market now for healthy snacks and stuff (whether are healthy is another thing altogether), and we have not even discussed alcohol 🙂

        In my book, ethics means using unfair practices, using influential people to swing decisions in your favour, using indirect forms of bribing such as entertaining clients at your expense, lying or withholding information etc.

        Also, the amount of money and time that goes into developing new drugs is very, very, long given the number of trials and approvals that have to do before the drug is approved for use. This is the reason why patents are such an important and controversial factor. So any new drug development has to be for markets where LSP is doing well and the needs of that market. For the Indian market, I feel it is best to increase rural sales and improve the bottom line, once the business is fairly profitable and the brand is well-established, money can be pumped into new drug development.

        Think about it — not selling your best-selling product and pumping money into new investments at a time when business is not doing well is a recipe for disaster according to me — would you manage your P&L statement the same way, reduce top line and bottom line at the same time?

        There will be the odd mismatch, do not beat yourself about it, it is not an LR or QA set, aim for a high percentage of match using the process. Hope you watched the DM Masterclass on myIMS.

        All the best!

        Like

  2. Disha says

    Hi sir,
    I have scored 209 in nmat. Do you think its enough for nmims mba mumbai?
    Thanks

    Like

  3. bhushan kharche says

    Hello Sir,

    My profile-
    Xth – 92.77%
    XII – 80%
    UG – B.E. Mech. – 77.7%
    Work Ex. – 21 months TCS
    Male – NC-OBC
    CAT 2019 Slot 2 – (39/29/65/133) Close to 97%ile
    IIFT- 132.5
    As per my knowledge, I am expecting calls from IIFT, NITIE, SJMSOM, DMS, IIMK, I, S, MDI, SPJIMR, FMS(very less), new and baby IIMs
    Am I over expecting or did I miss any?
    I am afraid my sectionals in VARC and DILR, though above 85%ile, will hurt in some cases.

    I am preparing for XAT and SNAP but it’s quite difficult to wait for the result of CAT and calls now, so asking.
    Please suggest.

    Thanks a lot for these posts!

    Like

  4. Shilpi says

    Hi Sir,
    In SET 4: Business + HR Set, for the Mr. Jose question, it’s given that it is not possible to transfer Mrs.Jose to Luxembourg. I assumed that was due to her pregnancy, hence they have to stay in India for the next 4 months at least. I don’t get how work from home would solve the issue if she can’t be moved to Luxembourg?

    Like

    • Hi Shilpi,

      They have clearly mentioned — It is at its nascent stage and does not yet have an HR department. Hence, it is not possible to transfer Mrs.Jose to Luxembourg.

      The reason she can’t be moved is not pregnancy but there is no HR Dept. yet, so she can move there and work from home for the India office.

      Nothing beats reading the case properly, so when in doubt, always do that 🙂

      All the best!

      Like

  5. Pingback: How to crack XAT Decision Making – Part III | The CAT Writer

  6. Mohan sought feedback from a few of his businessmen friends, who were familiar with both the branches. Here is what they said:

    Businessman 1 : Customers of Connaught place and Panipat are very different.

    Businessman 2 : Customers in Panipat are extremely happy with Ram’s behaviour.

    Businessman 3 : Panipat branch does not use the same quality of ingredients but maintains good hygiene and taste.

    Businessman 4 : Who knows, tomorrow the customers of Panipat might also appreciate what Connaught place customers appreciate today!

    If Mohan thinks all these are valid concerns, which of the following actions would be best for the business?

    Training Kishan to replace Ram in a few months.
    Not worrying about ingredients as long as business grows.
    Bringing Ram to Connaught place branch.
    Naming the Panipat branch as ‘Ram’s’, and changing it back to Mohan’, when needed.
    Asking Kishan to run the Panipat branch.

    Sir between 2 and 5 isn’t 2 a better option as when everything except ingredients is in Ram’s favor why under any circumstance should Mohan replace ram with Kishan? Also, the clientele likes Ram’s behavior so isn’t the most appropriate option 2 right away?

    Like

    • It is not that straightforward since he has changed the brand’s core premise.

      So in that sense, the Connaught Place brand can get affected by the brand’s offerings in Panipat is word spreads that they do not use organic products any more.

      Which is why option 2 is not the option right away.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Sir, I have a query, please help
    I’ve scored 90 marks in slot 2. I know the scores are very low and I could’ve done much better as this score is lesser than my top 10 mock scores
    But, I have to take admission in a good enough college this year anyhow as my family can’t afford another drop year
    Please suggest me some strategy which I can follow to boost my chances for colleges like GIM. My GK is below average but I will do my best to make the most out of the remaining time

    Like

    • Hi Shubham,

      GIM needs a raw score of 28-30, so you should aim to score above 30 at the least.

      XAT has tricky Verbal and DM, so it is best to be a bit careful with those two sections and not attempt way too many.

      By now you should be able to figure how to plan for this score given your strengths and weakness vis-a-vis the XAT.

      All the best!

      Like

  8. Nikhil Taparia says

    Cat 2019 slot 1 Overall 171

    All sectional above 90%ile

    10th/12th/grad – 81/78/61

    0 work ex

    BBA (Non engineering ) student.

    What percentile should I expect?

    And which all calls from old IIMs should I expect?

    Thank you

    Like

  9. nikhil taparia says

    Hello sir
    please see my profile
    CAT 2019
    57/50/64. OA-171
    10th /12th (commerce)/ Grad(BBA)- 81/78/61
    No work ex.
    What calls can I expect?
    Thank you

    Like

    • Hi Nikhil,

      Congrats on the score, it should end up somewhere in the high 99s but how high is the question.

      If it is above 99.60, you should get calls from 4-5 the old IIMs, else you might get calls from 3-4 of them.

      All the best!

      Like

  10. Jatin says

    Hi Sir!
    Your posts are like the light switch that I switch ON in these dark times. Thanks a ton for writing these.
    I want to cross the 90th percentile mark in XAT. I am working hard towards my aim but CAT and IIFT have punctured my confidence.
    Is there something that you would advise me to do? I can’t write the CAT again. I have to get into an MBA college next year. SNAP mock scores seem to be good(85-90 range), but I am getting jittery as the day of exam comes near.

    Like

    • If you can identify the specific mistakes that you made on CAT and IIFT day and try to consciously take SNAP Mocks and the actual SNAP avoiding those missteps you should be good. If you feel have the capability there is no reason to be afraid.

      Like

  11. Anurag Bagaria says

    Hello Sir,
    In Set 4, Q 1 , is there a discrepancy between fact mentioned in question and its representation in table prepared while solving (about sales in India being less than 50% represented in table as more than 50%)??
    If yes, will this also bring option 1 in consideration? (ie patented drugs is 43%, thus generic drugs will be less than 43% in India)
    Please clarify and guide. Thanks in Advance.

    Like

    • You are right about this, 1 should be valid in general, the only thing being that in 4 the numbers exactly add up, 29,21,50, whereas less than 43% much broader than less than 7%, which is the more precise figure.

      Like

  12. Anurag Bagaria says

    just to fully state my understanding –
    since the percentages are with respect to total sales volume (global sales), total sales in India is less than 50%, out of which patented drug sales is 43% and thus generic drug being max 6.9999%..

    Like

  13. Varun says

    Hey Tony sir,

    Any timeline for the next post? Eagerly waiting for it. 🙂
    Also sir, I have found variations in the answer keys for this paper (XAT 2015). Is there an official answer key which was published by XAT? DM is already tough enough without any inconsistencies in the solutions.

    Thank you!

    Like

  14. Akshay Sinha says

    Hello Sir,
    In Set 3, Question 2, which asks “In order to sell the technology to Mr. Arbit and Mr. Boring, Mr. Xanadu is thinking of five possible sales pitches. Which of the following sales pitches would reduce uncertainties the most for Mr. Arbit and Mr. Boring?”, how can we negate option 3? (The R&D team of ITS is working to counter any possible downside of the technology.)

    Like

    • The main thing has to be the viability of the business and if anything increases business viability then that reduces uncertainty, remember this is a sales pitch.

      The R&D team is still working and has no concrete information that will reduce sales/business uncertainty. Incase you thinking about environmental impact and stuff that is an additional assumption and does not meet the sales pitch criteria.

      Hope this clarifies.

      Like

  15. LazarusX says

    Has the DM masterclass been uploaded on MyIMS ? I can’t it. Can someone please let me know how to access them or provide me with the link.

    Like

  16. Mansi Mathur says

    Hi sir,
    I am currently solving DM from IMS previous year paper and solutions available on the portal. I found some of the solutions different and not convincing. Also its solutions are different from your answers in this and previous post for eg. DM Q. no. 37,40,48 of 2015. It is a very important source can you please look into this, so that we do not develop false reasoning.

    Thankyou in advance.

    Like

    • After a point DM is not based on principles of formal logic and there is no way one can agree on all questions.

      So there will be a disagreement on a few questions. Go with the IMS official answer since they use the key given by XAT.

      DM is not based on formal logic and unlike RC one cannot argue using the passage since the case is also set by the question setter, one just accepts answer given by them, and hopes that the answers match in a test situation most of time. One can only follow a process one cannot learn DM like CR.

      Like

    • I have made a small addition to the DM masterclass dealing with this issue of mismatch, it will be updated tomorrow. Please have a look at that.

      Like

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