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Listen this way听力教程第四册08

Unit 8 Business Success

Part Ⅰ Getting ready

A The following words will appear in this unit. Listen carefully and study the definitions.

1. inflate:

2. monopoly:

3. ally:

4. distribution:

5. stockpile:

6. sponsor:

7. entrepreneur:

8. layoff:

9. proprietor:

10. reimbursement:

B. At a trade fair, Hubert and Usugi are exchanging information about some products, product ranges and prices. Listen to their conversation carefully and complete the chart by filling in the correct numbers.

Hubert: Good morning.

Usugi: Good morning.

Hubert: Can I help you?

Usugi: Er, thank you but I'm just looking at the moment.

Hubert: Yes, please do. Have you come across our product before?

Usugi: I think I have heard of them, yes.

Hubert: We are relatively new but Golf Pro is acquiring a reputation very quickly. We have become world leaders in metal woods.

Usugi: Really? Well, actually I am quite interested in metal woods. Could you tell me what the prices are in this range?

Hubert: Of course. The prices start at 90 pounds and they go up to 149 pounds.

Usugi: Did you say 149 pounds?

Hubert: Yes, that's right. I wonder if you would be interested in our new range of ladies' clubs as well?

Usugi: Well, possibly. Do you think you could give me the prices?

Hubert: Yes. The range is called Golf Pro Lady and the full set of nine irons comes to 465 pounds. Woods, the set of three is 240 pounds and putters are 46 pounds each.

Usugi: So, that was 46 pounds each, wasn't it?

Hubert: Yes, 46 pounds each.

Usugi: Right, thank you, do you have some information about your top of the range full set of clubs as well?

Hubert: Of course. That is our Golf Pro X. This is real state-of-the-art when it comes to professional clubs. The set of nine irons comes to 835 pounds. Very reasonable I think you'll agree.

Usugi: Mmm, not bad.

Hubert: Would you like to try one out in the practice area?

Usugi: Er, no thank you. I'm afraid I don't have time at the moment. But I would like to read some more about your products.

Hubert: Of course. Here are some of our latest brochures with up-to-date information on the full ranges. And also my card.

Usugi: Thank you.

Hubert: Please contact me if you need any more information.

Part Ⅱ A diamond is forever?

A. You are going to hear an interview with Edward J. Epstein about the setup and workings of the international diamond business. While listening for the first time, write down some key words in the notes column. After the second listening, decide whether the following statements are true or false. Use "√" in the square that you think is correct.

Interviewer: Like me, you've probably always believed that diamonds — those gorgeous, brilliant, shining jewels — are precious because they're both beautiful and rare. It's the demand for rare gems that makes them expensive. Well, the author of The Death of the Diamond is an American writer and journalist, Edward J. Epstein and, when I met him in his apartment in New York earlier this year, he soon put me right on a few things.

Edward Epstein: Diamonds are not rare at all. They're one of the most common minerals in the crust of the earth. In fact, if you think about it, there are more diamonds in America, or England, than any other commodity, except for a television set. There are more diamonds than cars. There are more diamonds than families with children. There are more diamonds than dishwashers or other appliances. Almost every family, at least in America, has a diamond.

Interviewer: If that's so, why is it that diamonds should be so expensive?

Edward Epstein: Well, diamonds are expensive because there's a monopoly that has tried to fix the price of diamonds and they charge a rent for getting married. It's a marriage rent. Because you think it's symbolic and important for the marriage, you're willing to buy a little pebble, that you wouldn’t buy in a store if you weren't getting married, and pay $1 000. It's sort of a private marriage license.

Interviewer: Edward Epstein's book is an expose of that monopoly. The corporation in question is De Beers; the South African company that exercises extraordinary control over the world's diamonds. There are many strange and unexpected twists to the story. For instance, diamonds are found in many places in the world; there have recently been big finds in Australia, for example. But, De Beers' main suppliers outside South Africa are, surprisingly, the Russians and, as is better known, Black African states, such as Zaire, Angola and Tanzania. De beers' policy for dealing with these unlikely allies is very simple.

Edward Epstein: De Beers makes an offer to buy up all the diamonds in the world at a set price. And, because it controls the means of cutting, the means of distribution, the means of credit and financing for diamonds, most African countries find it worthwhile to sell to De Beers. De Beers then puts it all in a central stockpile and then redistributes it to the diamond cutters in Belgium, in England and other, Israel, and other places.

Interviewer: It seems quite extraordinary to think that Black African nations, which are, presumably, pledged to the downfall of South Africa should have this constant arrangement with a South African corporation.

Edward Epstein: Well, I think you have to look at it as, basically, a business relationship. How else could they sell these tiny pebbles, that have no real intrinsic value, to America and Japan, except through De Beers; that knows how to cut'em, market'em and, mainly, inflate the price through advertising and trickery.

B Now try this: listen to a more authentic version of the interview and fill in the gaps in the summary below.

Part Ⅲ Technology in doing business

A In this section you are going to hear a passage about how technology affects the way companies do business. While listening for the first time, take down some key words in the left-hand column. After the second listening, fill in the blanks in order to complete the major points.

Many analysts say the revolution in technology will cause a revolution in the way companies do business. Among those experts is Bill Gates, founder of the Microsoft Company and widely regarded as one of the most influential men in the computer industry. The Microsoft founder recently discussed his ideas in New York.

Bill Gates says most businesses are still not taking advantage of existing technologies to increase efficiency and sales. He believes the majority of companies are receiving only about 20% of the advantages they could gain through technology.

"If you just have the PCs in a company, and mainly what you're doing is sharing some files, and creating documents with them and not running the fundamental information flow through those PCs, then the value you are losing is greater than the value you are receiving. It's still probably a worthwhile investment."

Mr. Gates says many business leaders have sought his ideas on the effective use of technology and he responded with a new book titled Business at the Speed of Thought. He believes all businesses must learn to operate in the digital world.

"I think that, in most industries, if you keep trying to do business the way you've done it… in the past, that's going to create a real problem because you won't be as responsive, you won't be as efficient, as the people who are embracing the new approaches. We're seeing an incredible number of new start-ups coming into businesses, taking the interest as given, assuming that the information is there and they can reach out to their customers in this new way."

Bill Gates discussed his ideas at a recent entertainment industry conference sponsored by a Variety Magazine and the Schroeder Investment Company. He told the meeting the computer internet is actually redefining what a market is. He gave an example of a highly specialized business which has used the internet to expand its market.

"There's a small company up in Wisconsin, that refurbishes old phones, or sells really old phones. Now that's a business that they couldn't have been in the old world because in any city they put a store in, they just wouldn't find enough customers. Because on the internet, they have a whole world, who happens to want this able to find them, their business is growing, they are hiring new people, and you know, it's kind of a… a specialized business. So that's a really profound thing because it wouldn't have been possible without the Internet there to form the new marketplace."

Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates believes electronic commerce will grow rapidly in the next decade. That, he says, will give new power to consumers.

"I have no doubt that in terms of the consumer benefits here, it's unquestioningly going to be dramatic. You'll be a more informed buyer even when you don't go and do the purchase itself on the Internet."

Mr. Gates says technology is making and will continue to make fundamental changes in the way business is conducted. As he sees it, companies can embrace those changes with enthusiasm, or ignore them and die.

Statements:

1. Bill Gates believes most companies receive only 12% of the advantages they could gain through technology.

2. If a company uses PCs only for files and documents, it will make far less money than it could otherwise.

3. Bill Gates' new book is entitled Business at the Speed of Technology.

4. The entertainment industry conference was sponsored by a variety of magazines.

5. As technology continues to develop, the consumer will become a more and more informed buyer.

B Now listen to the passage again. After that some statements will be read to you. Decide whether they are true or false. Put "T" or "F" in the brackets.

Part Ⅳ More about the topic: How to Improve Your Executive Image?

A In this section, you are going to hear a passage about how to improve your executive image. While listening for the first time, take down some key words in the notes column. After the second listening, put a tick next to the pictures which most closely match Knapp's suggestions.

To close the credibility gap, Knapp showed us the right way to stand when speaking to groups. Jacket buttoned, feet fairly closed but angled open so that you seem alert and in control. He also demonstrated various ways that people hold their hands. At the sides, too rigid. The bishops clasped, at the waist, acceptable. The fig leaf position, too low, a sign of weakness. Arms crossed, very bad, defensive and combative. Knapp recommended using hand gestures every 15 to 30 seconds for emphasis. He had us stand up and practice a few together. Gesturing in unison to 4 to 5 phrases like “The point is this …”, and “I said, we need more production.” To prove the correctness or inadequacies of certain positions, Knapp kept citing his own experience in corporate board rooms or evidence from behavioral science, “Don’t let the fingers point down”, he instructed, “because that has negative psychological implications.” Having looked at some typical research on body language myself, I do not think that the field has yet achieved the level of scientific precision that would justify such firm conclusions. During the afternoon section, we learned the proper way to sit at a desk. Don’t lean back, don’t slouch, don’t cross the legs, don’t put your feet on the desk. It communicates strength, but in a crude sort of way. The message seemed to be, if it feels comfortable, don’t do it. One participant asked whether it is really necessary to be so rigid about how one behaves in the office. “Not necessarily,” Knapp replied, “but what I’m giving you is what people in authority do.” Discussing the importance of eye contact when talking with other people, Knapp claimed that it creates an image of sincerity, credibility and trust. He made us stand up and greet the person sitting next to us, being sure to give a firm handshake and make strong eye contact, so we did, staring each other in the eyes, sincerely.

B Now try this: listen to a more authentic version of the passage.

Part Ⅴ Do you know ...?

The following passage is about woman-owned small businesses in the United States. While listening for the first time, don't forget to take down some key words in the notes column. After the second listening, answer the following questions.

Business Week reports that small business is now one of the most dynamic parts of the United States' economy. Currently, one in every ten American workers is employed by businesses owned by women. While service businesses dominate the women owned and operated enterprises. American women are exercising their business talents in many fields. That includes construction, agriculture, communication, retail, manufacturing, engineering and real estate. The National Association of Women Business Owners says its membership has increased 38% since 1991, according to Business Week. In addition to their search for a better synthesis between family and work, women have also been motivated to start their own businesses by layoffs and job barriers that have prevented women from advancing in their careers. But while women have shown success in beginning their own endeavors, their companies tend to be smaller than men's and slower growing. Business Week writer Wendy Zellner says our research leads her to believe that unlike men, women have other priorities than just profit when they start their own businesses.

"It's not so much that… that they don't find, you know, profits and fields growth important. But they tend to rank it, perhaps, you know third or fourth, as opposed to No. 1."

Rochelle Tzbarkas has been the owner for 3 years of a specialty food and spice store in New York City. She says her customers' good will and the friendships she has made at her store are highest on her list of triumphs. It was these friends, she recalls, who offered financial help when she was struggling after her first year to find over $9 000 to pay her monthly rent.

"They come in. They sense the power here and… the grit and the hard work and they see something really beautiful and something worth saving."

While women's small businesses may struggle more financially than men's during the company's early years, Business week says, women owned businesses are probably more stable and safer companies for which to work. The National Foundations for Women Business Owners found that 15% of women owned businesses showed job losses as opposed to 23% of all businesses. Female proprietors, Business week reports, tend to place more emphasis on nurturing the individual employee's needs. If those needs are satisfied, they reason, the company should benefit in the long run. Women owned businesses are considered more likely to offer their employees education reimbursement, flexible schedules, profit sharing at an earlier stage of the company's life and help with child care costs.
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