GMAT Issue – Competition is beneficial (How to write GMAT Argument Essay Example)

Another from GMAT Issue Archive:


“The presence of a competitor is always beneficial to a company.  Competition forces a company to change itself in ways that improve its practices.”


Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion stated above.  Support your views with reasons and/or examples from your own experience, observations, or reading.


The author believes that the presence of competitor is always beneficial because it forces a company to improve continuously. There are many circumstances in which this statement holds true. For example, improvement in product, services,delivery of the goods, continued research and development, etc… However there are many circumstaces where the presence of competitor is not so beneficial. For example, presence of an established competitor in a market where a new company wants to enter. However, after a careful consideration I believe the competition is always beneficial to the company.


First, the comptition makes the company always on a lookout for improvement opportunities in various departments. If the company doesn’t act as quickly as the  competitor then there are chances to loose market share and hence a dip in profit. This way it helps company to stay agile to changing market and customer requirments. For example, in consumer toothpaste market the presence of several major players make it impossible for any one of them to become complacent and it always helps them to do continuous introspection in the way they manage processes and practicies inside the comapny. This introspection can force them to change the unsuccessful or incompetent practices.


Second, the competition makes the company invest more into the research and development and innovation to come out with better products for consumers. For example, we have seen consumer electronics companies to present new and superior quality of TVs years after years. Such strategy always helps them to stay ahead in the game.


However, the competition can also be detrimental to some companies in some scenarios. For example – if there are too many competitors in a market such as refrigerator market, it becomes incresingly difficult for the companies to meet shareholder expectations on return. Such fierce competition forces the companies to cut the prices and profits which may lead them to a difficult financial position. In such cases cosolidation of market is more required than entry of another competitor.


Another example where the competition is not so helpful is where there is only one significant player enjoying a monopoly. In such case it becomes increasignly difficult for the new player to present it products and earn profits. For example, it would be difficult for a new retailor to enter in US market and compete with Wal Mart. The new retailor would have hoped that Wal Mart was not present in market so that new retailor doesn’t need to compete with price of Wal Mart which buys goods in bulk!


However from a higher level perspective it has been observed that a competitor in the market makes the company thriving for better results, products and earning. Sometimes only such tough competition has given birth to the innovations which has led to revival of several multi-nationationals such as Appel with iPod. Compe. So competition is a boon to the company and the market in which it works.


Gmat Argument – City L Lifestyle (How to write GMAT Argument Essay – Example)

Another Argument from my archive:


“Two years ago, City L was listed 14th in an annual survey that ranks cities according to the quality of life that can be enjoyed by those living in them.  This information will enable people who are moving to the state in which City L is located to confidently identify one place, at least, where schools are good, housing is affordable, people are friendly, the environment is safe, and the arts flourish.”


Discuss how well reasoned you find this argument.  In your discussion be sure to analyze the line of reasoning and the use of evidence in the argument.  For example, you may need to consider what questionable assumptions underlie the thinking and what alternative explanations or counterexamples might weaken the conclusion.  You can also discuss what sort of evidence would strengthen or refute the argument, what changes in the argument would make it more logically sound, and what, if anything, would help you better evaluate its conclusion.


I do not agree with the author’s conclusion that City L will provide all the aminities to the new people moving to the state in which City L is located. The argument depends upon several assumption and insufficient data. I have listed down 4 reasons why I donot agree with argument.


First, the author doesnt mention anything about the sample size of survey conducted. Did the survey include all major cities? What if the the survey did not include the other cities which also provide all the stated aminities? More importantly, did the survey include all other cities of the state at least? If the survey did not include such cities then it is highly likely that City L can rank much higher  than it may actually deserve.


Second, how many total cities were covered in the survey? If there were only 14 city covered in the survey and City L was ranked at 14 then it shows that City L is actually not so better place as one might have assumed.


Third, the survey was done almost 2 years ago. The statement rest on assumption that many factors, which contributed the shortlisting city, might have changed. For example, a major earthquake hit the city 1 year back which destroyed the basic city infrastructure severly. In this case it will not be wise for anyone to move to City L until its infrastructure is revived. Hence such outdated survey data can not provide the sufficient info to make a choice.


Fourth, the survey mentioned 4 basic factors – good schools, affordable housing, friendly people, safe enviorment – that make City L a good choice. However what if the employment opportunities available at City L are not adequate? In such case it will not provide growth opportunities to the parents which can affect the standard of living of whole family. So these 4 factors are not sufficient to make a decision.


However, the author’s statement can be strengthened if survey sample size included all major national cities and hence puts City L at much higher rank in comparision. The statment can also be strengthened if it’s shown that not much has changed in the factors contributing the choice of City L above others in last 2 years. This improves the validity of survey. References to other factors to quality of life in survey can also help to make the argument much stronger.

Updates – Received 6.0 in AWA in Offical Score Card


I got my official score card from GMAC. I got 6.0 in AWA. I am happy to see that score because I have heard some of the ivy schools do look for a good show in AWA. I have posted my last few essays before the GMAT for you all to review. Please share them if you find them useful.

More later…

[Updates: Please check out my blog posts of GMAT AWA Arguments and GMAT Issues templates]

Argument – Tourism Revenue

This was my last essay before GMAT

Last summer saw a 500% increase in tourism at seaside resort, and the national economic situation is even more favorable this year. This summer’s tourist boom will surely generate record revenues which will resolve our area’s economic difficulties.

The author’s argument that summer’s tourism boom will continue and it will resolve area’s economic difficulties is weak; it rests on many assumptions and fails to substantiate sustainable evidences. The author assumes that the growth of industry will continue this year. It also assumes that nothing has changed which could have proved detrimental to the area’s environment. It fails to justify how it could solve all economic problems of area. In following paragraphs, I will present these assumptions and weak evidences that weaken the argument along with the premises which can strengthen the argument. 

First, the argument incorrectly assumes that it will have similar increase in tourism this year. It’s almost impossible to achieve 500% growth in 2 consecutive years. What if the the year before the last was a disaster and hence last year when the tourism industry recovered the growth was 500% compared to disastrous year. This does not mean that tourism earned much extra money. At the same time it does not mean that such situation leaves enough room for additional growth this year. 

In addition, the argument assumes that local economic situation will be as good as it was last year if not better. What if a major tsunami occurred last winter which destroyed all the major properties of the area? If this had happened then the area will not attract more tourists this year even though the national economic situation is more favorable this year. 

Furthermore, even if we assume that all is well with the area and its tourism and that tourism will get expected record revenues, there is no strong evidence that states that these record revenues will be able to resolve the area’s economic difficulties. For instance, if the economic needs of area is in terms of billions, a few extra millions earned by the tourism will not solve the economic difficulties. 

However, the argument can be strengthened if it’s shown that (1) No unfavorable circumstances, that can lead to decrease in tourists, occurred this year compared to last year (2) Last year’s growth was not a recovery from loss but instead a growth because of improved tourist facilities (3) Credible economic survey estimates growth in this area’s tourism industry to be in excess of 500% this year. (4) The growth would provide sufficient money to cover all economic difficulties of area. 

To sum up, as cited in aforementioned paragraphs, the argument rests on weak assumptions and lacks solid evidences. Unless the argument is strengthened by additional premises, such as the ones mentioned in previous paragraph, it does not appear credible. Therefore, the argument is very weak for serious consideration.

Issue – Redevelopment Proposal

This was the last essay before my GMAT.

Although the redevelopment proposal for blighted inner-city neighborhood has promoted criticism from senior citizens, advocates of low and middle income housing, and community residents fearful of inconvenience or even displacement, it promises to create not only a number of upscale apartment buildings but also numerous construction jobs as well.


The issue of redevelopment of blight inner-city neighborhood is often seen as controversial and has been a topic of debate in many developing areas in either developed countries or developing countries. There are some circumstances in which the criticism has truth. For example: displacement of current owners of old property without providing a new better housing. On other hand there are many circumstances which lead to redevelopment of old properties. For instance: when a city is undergoing a makeover to provide better infrastructure. However, after careful consideration, in my opinion, the redevelopment often brings more benefits than problems. I have mentioned two points in following paragraphs to support my opinion.

With ever growing human population and expanding global economy bigger and better infrastructure needs are seen. Since a city can not grow beyond the available land space it has and people often want to stay close to heart of city as much as they can, it presents a strong case to redevelop the old inner-city infrastructure which may have inadequate infrastructure capacities and build upscale apartments that can house more people and more businesses. This will provide much needed infrastructure to fuel the growth. An appropriate example for this would be Sanghai redevelopment, which led to incredible growth of the city. 

Redevelopment provides not only new and better infrastructure but also new job opportunities. For example, whenever a new construction project starts a lot of construction jobs is created. A plethora of jobs of other dependent industries is also created. When bigger companies move to such infrastructures more high paying jobs are also created. So, overall new employment opportunities are also by-product of redevelopment.  

However, there are few concerns with almost each redevelopment proposal. These concerns are related to all those present owners, such as senior citizen and low-income families, which are staying at such premises since long. In many cases it is seen that a appropriate new housing facilities is not given to these people when redevelopment takes place. Many people loose their businesses on which their earnings are depended. As long as such needs are taken care while redevelopment is taking place, it will prove more beneficial to community overall. 

In a nutshell, after scrupulous deliberation, I believe redevelopment should be encouraged. While it may create some discomfort when people have to move from their current houses or businesses, in long run such redevelopment is often more beneficial than detrimental. Naturally, redevelopment proposal should be accepted.


Argument – Advertising Services

Our service, which includes both designing and placing advertisements, is by far the most effective in the industry. For instance, we recently designed and placed a series of advertisements of an apparel company using a golfer as a spokesman. Before the series of ads, a survey showed that only 8 percent of people who described themselves as non-golfers had heard of the apparel company. After the series of ads, despite the golfer making national headlines by becoming the youngest golfer ever to win a major professional tournament, over 80 percent of people from a second survey had heard of the apparel company.

The advertising agency’s argument is very weak and does not provide solid evidences to prove the effectiveness of their advertising abilities. The agency uses a survey result to claim that the apparel brand was a hit and assumes that the brand was a huge hit only because of advertisement. The agency does not even strongly justify that it was choice of golfer which made the brand hit. Thus, the agency’s argument is far too weak for serious consideration and fails to substantiate convincing evidences.

First, the agency cites a survey result to claim that the apparel brand was launched successfully. However, there is no more information about the credibility of survey. Who all were included in survey? Did they include only those people who stay near to the company showrooms? If so, it’s possible that these people heard about the brand because of their proximity to showroom.

In addition, the survey does not state whether the people heard about the advertisement but rather states that these people heard about the apparel brand. So, even if we assume that survey was done on credible sample size it’s also possible that the apparel brand became popular because of its pricing and quality and not the advertisement. Therefore the effectiveness of advertisement is not proved.

Furthermore, the brochure implies that it was the choice of young golfer as spokesperson which led to success of apparel using 80% of people surveyed as example however the claim does not include any information about the people who are not golf fans. It’s possible that majority of apparel brand customers are non golf fans and they will still not be attracted to brand.

The agency’s claim can be strengthened if it’s shown that: (1) The survey had credible sample size. (2) The survey includes people of all strata of society. (3) Majority of the people of survey stated they heard about brand because of new advertisement (4) Most of the people cites their enticement to brand a result of a choice of golfer as spokesperson.

As cited above, the agency’s claim rests of far too many assumptions and weak evidences. Unless its claims are strengthened by several factors as stated above, they do not appear effective. Therefore, I do not agree with agency’s claim of effective advertising.

Issue – Protecting Consumer

Consumers need to be protected from companies that make deceptive claims in their advertising. However companies should always be allowed to make truthful claims, even if those claims could be misunderstood by some customers

Author states that consumers should be protected from deceptive advertisements but at the same time agrees to allow companies to produce such deceptive advertisement as long as their facts are true. In my opinion, the author presents a self contradicting opinion in two sentences. If consumers are to be protected from deceptive advertising then companies should be refrained from using truthful but deceptive facts. 

For example, several toothpaste manufacturers claim to be number 1 in market and air such advertisements on TV, radio and internet. However they never specify on which basis they claim to be number 1. Companies do not specify whether their claim is based on market share. They do not specify whether results of survey include all strata of society. Consumers usually get attracted by such boastful claims and end up buying product of such companies. Companies can claim that their facts were true however less quality product hurts consumer regardless. Hence, the author’s first statement is contradicted. 

Another example, several electronic appliance companies advertise products with guarantees up to 5 years. However they never specify the tens of conditions that apply before consumer can avail such guarantees. Unaware of such conditions many consumers buy the products. When the products malfunction and consumers claim for the benefit of the guarantee the companies refuse to comply citing numerous conditions in agreement. Here too, I agree that companies did include the conditions in agreement but they never specified conditions in advertisements that enticed the consumer to buy products. Again the purpose of protecting consumer is defeated. 

In addition, the companies often advertise products and services with their starting price range excluding the several optional services charges. For instance, almost all major car manufacturers shows advertisements of their car models with full accessories and uses these accessories to claim superior than the other cars in market, often at cheaper price! However when a consumer goes to buy a car he realizes that all the accessories shown in advertisement do not come with original model and he has to pay another few hundred dollars to buy his dream car. 

Each of the abovementioned instance shows that if companies are allowed to make deceitful yet truthful claim, it’s more likely to harm the consumer in longer run. Such permission, as stated earlier, contradicts the first statement by the author. Therefore, in my opinion, the companies should not be allowed to make such misleading claims that can hurt the consumer.