Decision Making – Himaja was among the top ten students of her Business

XAT 2021 Exam Paper – Decision Making – Himaja was among the top ten students of her Business

Read the following scenario and answer the three questions that follow.

Himaja was among the top ten students of her Business Management batch. She got placed in a reputed strategy consulting firm during campus placements. She was delighted to work under Nirmal, her superior, who was known for grooming many stars in the organisation. Nevertheless, he was also regarded as a hard taskmaster. Though she was a fresh recruit, she longed to be in a client-facing role.

Q.1 During an informal office gathering, Himaja mustered up courage to ask Nirmal for a client-facing role.

Which of the following reasons, if true, will BEST justify Nirmal saying “no” to Himaja?

A. Himaja’s teammates are not happy with her communication skills.
B. Himaja needs to improve her presentation skills.
C. Himaja leaves early and client meetings go late into the night.
D. Clients do not appreciate strategic discussions with fresh recruits.
E. Clients do not take young women seriously during discussions.

Q.2 Due to her constant pleading, Nirmal assigned Himaja a client-facing role in his project. Nirmal instructed her that he would do all the talking during meetings, and she would diligently listen and take notes. However, in the first meeting, Himaja made a comment which contradicted Nirmal. In the next, she interrupted the client while he was making a point. This offended the client, resulting in Nirmal apologising to the client to save the project.

Which of the following is the MOST appropriate action that Nirmal should take against Himaja’s behaviour?

A. Have a chat with Himaja later in the evening, explain the delicate situation she had put him in during the meetings, and request her not to repeat it.
B. Caution Himaja that she would lose client-facing roles if she does not appreciate the rationale behind his instructions.
C. Ask Himaja’s project teammates to have a chat with her on how to behave in client meetings.
D. Recommend Himaja for a five-day listening-skills workshop.
E. Await the half-yearly performance review, due in two months, and submit a strong report against Himaja.

Q.3 Another month passed, and Himaja was working under Shreya in a different team. Shreya was impressed by Himaja’s enthusiasm and sincerity. She asked Himaja to accompany her to a meeting with a new client. During the meeting, Himaja made a statement that offended the client. Shreya tried to diffuse the situation by asking Himaja to apologise. Though Himaja apologised, she defended her statement. This infuriated the client further, who categorically told that the statement of Himaja was against his organisation’s core values. He specifically told Shreya that unless concrete steps were taken against Himaja, he would not get into any business with the firm.

Which of the following is the MOST appropriate action that Shreya should take in the interest of all parties?

A. Should castigate Himaja using strong words in front of the client, and later in the evening, share how much Shreya loved Himaja’s comment.
B. Should advise Himaja to look for a role outside the consulting industry since her competencies are not appreciated by clients.
C. Should defend Himaja, knowing fully that most probably Shreya will lose the client.
D. Should assure the client that Himaja will be transferred, but send Himaja for a twoweek vacation to rejuvenate instead.
E. Should move Himaja to a non-client facing role in the current project, and explore client facing roles in other projects.

Q.1 D
Q.2 B
Q.3 E

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