XAT 2016 Decision Making – Answer Key and Detailed Solutions

Sunday, January 3rd, 2016


XAT 2016 Decision Making Answers and Solutions

First of all, I hope that your XAT 2016 exam went well. The results for the CAT 2015 exam are less than a week away and I fully understand that this is a strange time for you. You might be feeling uneasy with butterflies in your stomach. But trust me – “this too shall pass” and hopefully this time passes in your favor.

Coming to the topic at hand, Decision Making questions in XAT are often confusing. So much so that most coaching institutes differ in their answers. Last year, XAT released an official answer key. I hope that they do it this time around as well. Given below are the answers for the Decision Making section in XAT 2016. I have skipped out on the questions that dealt purely with numbers. You can put those questions in the category of logical reasoning. I have decided to stick to the questions that were purely based on Decision Making in XAT 2016.

Let me add, if you disagree with the answers or solutions given to any of the Decision Making questions here – feel free to use the comment section – I will try and reason with you. Although, I understand that it might be a difficult thing to convince you otherwise but I am surely going to try. The only thing that I expect from you is to put in your doubts in proper English and do not “Typ Lyk Dis”. So, without further ado, given below is my take on the solutions to the Decision Making Questions in XAT 2016.

Answer Key to the Decision Making Questions in XAT 2016

Booklet Series C

Chatterjee, the MLA of Trikathapur. Businessman Ghosh. Bhowmick, a budding politician with hordes of money.
27 A
28 A

Indian Institute of Research
29 C
30 C
31 D

Kamal Chinnapa, Vimal Rao, Ganesh Krishnan and Dinesh Kumar
32 A
33 C

The city of Yashmund is served by licensed taxis
34 D
35 B

Harmful chemical in Crunchy Chips, a FMCG giant
36 B
37 B
38 C

Nicky, Manoj, and Benita join ABC Corp
39 C
40 E
41 E

42 – 46 Pure Logical Reasoning questions – dealt with numbers and pure logic. Avoiding these.

Purshottam Bhatnagar owns and operates a sweetshop Puru and Sons
47 D
48 B
49 A

Solutions to the Decision Making Questions in XAT 2016

Booklet Series C

Chatterjee, the MLA of Trikathapur. Businessman Ghosh. Bhowmick, a budding politician with hordes of money.

27 A – Chatterjee should approve the sale only after Ghosh plans a large number of trees around the factory and the city.
Reason: E is unethical, hence ruled out. C and D are ruled out because they do not take care of the pollution problem in the city. Shifting the green belt to a place outside the city will not solve the pollution problem in the city. Among B and A, A is a better option because the green belt reduced harmful pollution from the factory. The large number of trees around the factory will serve a similar purpose.

28 A – Request Chatterjee to defer implementation of the green policy by 3 years.
Reason: If it is a good idea, it should be executed by the people who are in power – so whether it was Bhowmick’s manifesto or someone else’s, it should not have an impact on Chatterjee’s decision making. This rules out option B. Fear and intimidation is never a good idea and can be considered extreme. That rules out C and E. D should be ruled out because it talks about Ghosh’s personal interests. Although Ghosh is important to Chatterjee, the decisions should be taken for the benefit of the society and not the individual.

Indian Institute of Research

29 C – 3 only
Reason: If the quality of articles has declined substantially, it is a very strong reason to discontinue the scheme. That has to be a part of the answer. So, the answer could be option B(2 and 3), C (3 only) or option E (3 and 4). A researcher died while on duty has no impact on the scheme. So, option B is ruled out. We need to take a call on whether we need statement 4 in the answer or not. If we do, answer is option E. If we don’t, answer is option C. We will not consider statement 4 as a reason for discontinuing because the total number of readers has increased significantly. Suppose, there were 100 articles and 100 people read it on average initially. Now, the number of articles has gone up to 400 whereas the average readership has fallen by just 2%. That means the overall viewership has increased significantly and it is a good sign. If the readership had fallen by a significant number – say 30% or 50%, then we could have considered that as a reason to discontinue the policy.

30 C – 2 and 3
Reason: We need to figure out the reasons that are unlikely to convince the government. 3 is definitely an unlikely option to convince the government. An individual won the Nobel prize because of his efforts, his research, his smartness. An extra grant is hardly a factor in the same. So, 3 should be a part of the answer. We are down to options, C, D, and E. Just because one institute in America does it is not reason enough for India to do it as well. So, statement 2 is also unlikely to convince the government and should be a part of the answer. We are left with C and E. Statement 1 is a valid reason that researchers world-wide are well paid and we should have similar standards in India. It will convince the government so it should not be a part of the answer. Only 2 and 3 should be a part of the answer. So, option C is valid here. TIME key says option E is the answer

31 D – 1 and 3
Reason: The Director cannot agree with statement 2. It is an auditor’s job to point out sudden increases in expenses. So, any option that includes statement 2 should be ruled out. A, B, C, and E are gone. We are left with option D.

Kamal Chinnapa, Vimal Rao, Ganesh Krishnan and Dinesh Kumar

32 A – He should introduce a new specialized service at Rs. 130
Reason: B is ruled out because opening another shop is an extreme step. E is ruled out because opening his shop for longer does not allow him to charge more. It just gives him more time to make the money. The problem we are trying to solve is to enable him to charge more for his superior services. D does not make business sense and is outright stupid. What if the customer wants just one service? C is like Uber Surge pricing. That is bound to annoy his customers in the long run. Also, it does not solve the problem at hand in any way but creates a different set of issues. Keep in mind that the problem we are trying to solve is to give Kamal the ability to charge more because he is more competent than others.

33 C – He should make every third visit free for his loyal customers.
Reason: Charging lower / differential rates would violate the agreement. That rules out A and B. With option D, he is maintaining the status quo and he might not be able to retain the loyal customers that way. So, D is also ruled out. Jumping the queue, as discussed in the previous question, might annoy the other customers who are waiting and is bad policy. So, option E is also ruled out. We are left with option C and that is the answer. TIME key says option E is the answer

The city of Yashmund is served by licensed taxis

34 D – The mayor introduces a feedback system
Reason: Option A is ruled out because a random police inspection cannot check and maintain comfort level for a large number of taxis. Customer feedback is a much better way to do the same. Option C will take care of comfort for only a small number of customers. The mayor wants to fix it for all. So, option C is ruled out. Option B will also have limitations as it will also target only a fraction of the drivers. A feedback system from customers along with an action (renewal of license) associated with it is the best way forward. Hence, optionD should be the answer.

35 B – The taxis that clear comfort-inspection can charge 25% above the metered rates. Studies have shown that the customers are willing to pay around 18% extra for comfort.
Reason: In this question, we are trying to convince the car owners to care about comfort and safety. The best way to do that is to tell them that they will be able to make more money if they cared about comfort. Allowing them to charge more for safe and comfortable cars is one way to do it. This is given to us in option A and B. Typically taxi customers will have the capacity to pay a little higher compared with the drivers. So, the taxis should be able to charge more from the customers and not from the drivers. So, A is a better choice among the two. D and E are ruled out because they take extreme steps for minor and / or unrelated violations. C is ruled out because it does not solve the problem. Giving loan for another car is hardly an incentive to improve. TIME key says option E is the answer

Harmful chemical in Crunchy Chips, a FMCG giant

36 B – 3, 2, 4
Reason: Statement 5 should be avoided. It does not address the problem at hand and is kind of a shady tactic. Only option B does not have 5, so that is the answer.

37 B – 6, 1, 4
Reason: Let us divide the statements in three categories:
Ethical – 6 and 2
Grey – 4 and 5
Unethical – 1 and 3
I fully understand that you might disagree with this sort of classification. Most statements are hard to put into one category or the other. But this should give us some indication of the answer. We have to find out the WRONG ORDER from ETHICAL to UNETHICAL. Definitely, statement 1 an unethical activity when compared with statement 4. So, 1 should come after 4. In option B, 1 comes before 4. So, Option B has the wrong order.

38 C – Hire another food testing agency
Reason: Filing a defamation case does not serve the purpose of regaining customer’s faith. Neither does option B. A and C will help the company regain customer’s trust. Among them, C is the better idea as an ad-blitz might not be seen in positive light by the consumers. They need to first get the product tested to gain customer’s trust.

Nicky, Manoj, and Benita join ABC Corp

39 C – 4 2 5
Reason: They have not performed properly so they should be penalized in some way or the other. Firing them might be an extreme step that should be avoided but they should not be given good ratings. So, 4 is the most appropriate choice. We are down to two options C or D. 425 or 431. 3 is probably the least appropriate behavior. If they are given high ratings, it would be lying to the company. A pay-cut might be a penalty but you cannot and should not lie on official records. So, giving them high ratings should not be a part of the answer. Even if it is a part of the answer, it should be the least appropriate step. If we follow 425 (option C), it fits the bill as it makes giving high ratings (lying) as the least appropriate step.

40 E – She should convey the trio’s unhappiness to her boss
Reason: A, B, and C would be rewarding the trio. That should not be done because they are not performing. D and E are appropriate steps. To be honest, I am confused between D and E. I would mark E as the answer here for the simple reason that D looks like cribbing. Also, she suspects that her promotion might be linked to it. It is not communicated to her. I am a cheater and I copy paste stuff from other websites – this line is inserted by me to catch hold of people who copy paste stuff without even going through it – please ignore this line. She is the trio’s boss and hence should be considered responsible for their behavior to a certain extent. Because of these, E seems like the more appropriate choice. Also, if she informs the boss in advance the boss might suggest a way out. Also, the boss would be aware of the situation in advance. If she does this at a later date, she might appear to be making excuses.

41 E – 3 and 5
Reason: 2 should not be a part of the answer. Nicky cannot be rewarded for poor performance. This rules out options B (2 and 4) and C (2 and 5). Manoj and Benita should be given high ratings for their performance on the job as they are doing well. So, 5 should be a part of the answer and 4 should not be a part of the answer. That rules out option D (3 and 4). Now we are left with two options A (1 and 5) or E (3 and 5). So basically we need to decide between 1 and 3. Should Amelia inform the higher authorities or should she give Nicky an ultimatum with 6 months to improve. While there can be arguments in favor of both 1 and 3, I would vote for 3 because Amelia is a senior executive. The question very clearly states that “Amelia has to decide the future of the trio”. Informing the higher authorities might seem like she is passing the buck. The buck stops with Amelia. She needs to take a call. Giving Nicky 6 months to improve is a fair enough call and is not drastic. It gives Nicky enough time. If Nicky still doesn’t improve, firing him / her will be good for the company. So, we will go with statement 3 and hence with Option E.

42 – 46 Pure Logical Reasoning questions – dealt with numbers and pure logic. Avoiding these.

Purshottam Bhatnagar owns and operates a sweetshop Puru and Sons
47 D – Every day, Purushottam also sends a batch of sweets to the school next to the station.
Reason: A and C are ruled out because that is police doing its job. E is ruled out because someone else is doing something is never a good enough reason for you to do it. It should definitely be avoided when the issue at hand is of ethical nature. B and D are the options that confused me. I initially thought it should be B but later changed it to D. If you remember 70s movies, “chori 2 lakh ki ho ya 2 rs. ki – chori chori hoti hai”. A bribe cannot be defined based upon the quantum involved. Govt officials should not accept gifts of any nature – small or big. It would be hard to draw the line between what can be considered a bribe and what cannot. That is why, I would eliminate option B and mark D as the answer.

48 B – 1 and 4
Reason: 4 should be a part of the answer. A 30 year track record shows that it is a safe activity and not a health hazard in any way. So, answer should be B (1 and 4) or E (4 and 5). Like previous question, someone else is doing something is never a good enough reason for you to do it. That eliminates statement 5 and so option E is eliminated. Answer is option B

49 A – 1 and 2
Reason: 4 is of no significance in any way and should not be a part of the answer. Who was present at Pramod’s marriage should not have an impact in the pricing department. This rules out options B, D, and E. We are left we A and C. We have to pick between statement 1 and statement 5. Statement 1 is a strong argument for not giving discounts as those people are in the top 20% of the city. So, statement 1 should be included in our answer. So, answer should be option A. TIME key says option C is the answer

With this, we come to the end of the Decision Making section for XAT 2016. I hope you enjoyed it and learned from it. If you disagree with any of the Decision Making answers or the reasons that I have given for those questions, please post your arguments in the comment section. I will either answer them via the comments or improve the reasoning in the post itself. I look forward to hearing your feedback via the comment section.

Ravi Handa,
Founder, Handa Ka Funda

XAT 2016 Decision Making – Answer Key and Detailed Solutions
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