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  Chairman's Report

  I am pleased to report that, although we had been expecting poor results for this half year because of slow growth in the world economy, the company has performed very satisfactorily.Operating profits for this first half are in fact very much (19) with those for the corresponding (20) last year. Profits reached £l 15 million before tax, compared with £l 16.3 million last year. Much of our success in the last six months can be (21) to the fact that all our major construction projects remained on schedule. Particularly pleasing was the early (22)of a major building contract in Canada.

  The company has made good progress with the initiatives announced at the Annual General Meeting. The majority of shareholders (23) the Board's decision to sell the company's loss-making engineering (24). It was the Board's belief that the company would (25) most benefit by (26) its resources on the expansion of its construction activities. Negotiations with a potential buyer began in February and are now at a critical (27).However, we feel that we are not as yet in a (28) to comment on what the outcome is likely to be.

  In June, we made a successful (29) for the Renishaw Construction Company of Hong Kong SAR, in order to give us greater (30) to markets in South East Asia. We still have sufficient resources to pursue our growth (31) and are at present (32) several other business opportunities which, like Renishaw Construction, would (33) new markets to us.

  19.A in order B on track C in line D on target

  20.A session B term C season D period

  21.A attributed B referred C assigned D designated

  22.A termination B ending C completion D finalising

  23.A confirmed B maintained C agreed D supported

  24.A portion B component C sector D division

  25.A have B gain C find D earn

  26.A focusing B directing C pointing D strengthening

  27.A height B step C edge D stage

  28.A condition B point C position D capacity

  29.A request B price C demand D bid

  30.A access B approach C admission D entrance

  31.A strategy B process C promotion D system

  32.A inquiring B deliberating C exploring D searching

  33.A send B open C provide D give



  19和20題需要在一起考慮,從整體上把握句子的意思。in line with與....一致;on track :doing or saying things that are likely to be successful or correct步入正軌;on target(射擊)準。20空選詞關鍵要將空格前面的those for the corresponding和前面的for this first half對應,這里空格填入的詞要能和this first half相匹配,表示時間段,時期,所以是period。因為是半年,所以不選season。整個句子的意思是這半年的營業利潤(operating profit)實際上是與去年同期相一致的。

  21題,attribute to,表原因,聯系整個句子不難做出選擇。designate是委任、指派




  25和26題,句子的意思是公司將通過把資源集中在建筑活動的擴張上來獲得大部分的收益。25題的A和C容易排除,關鍵是看gain還是earn。earn是通過努力掙到一筆錢(to receive a particular amount of money for the work that you do),gain是獲得或者實現什么(to obtain or achieve something you want or need),因為是公司的戰略,所以用gain更合適一些。

  27題,at a critical stage,在一個關鍵的階段。

  28題,in a position to do sth.能夠做某事。固定搭配


  30題,give us greater access to markets給我們更大的市場準入

  31題,growth strategy,增長策略,追求我們的增長策略。






  Focus on what you do best. This age-old strategy has worked well for Real Networks.Microsoft's main competitor in multimedia software for the Internet. Now, the smaller Seattle-based firm is trying a novel way to contain the software giant. On October 29t",it released the underlying recipe, or source-code, of its Real layer software and will soon do the same for its other programs giving away a big chunk of its intellectual property.


  This may sound like a desperate echo of 1998, when Netscape, struggling in Microsoft's chokehold, published the source-code of its web browser (an initiative that yielded few real results until this June, when the first sedous new version of the open-source browser, Mozilla, was released). Yet Real Networks is not playing defense. It is trying to encourage the creation of a common multimedia software infrastructure for every kind of file format and device, thus thwarting Microsoft's ambitions in this promising market.The firm hopes that others in the industry (volunteer programmers, media firms and hardware makers) will take the code, called Helix DNA, mprove it and make it run on new devices, such as mobile phones and home stereos, turning Real Networks' software into an industry standard. Clever licensing terms are supposed to ensure that this standard does not splinter and that the firm still makes money.


  Individual developers, universities and other non-profit organisations can modify the software as they please and even redistribute it for free, so long as they also publish the source-code for their changes. This is a sort of payment in kind, for Real Networks is then allowed to use these contributions. Firms, on the other hand, must pay royalty fees if they distribute more than 1 m copies of the code. They also have to make sure that their software works with other Helix DNA products. The software's development community already has 2, 000 members. And several hardware makers back the effort. But there are risks. Afraid of piracy, media groups are suspicious of anything that might be related to hackers (although they also do not want to depend on, and pay for, technology controlled by Microsoft). The self-created competition could also hurt Real Networks if customers decide its commercial products, which will be based on the open source-code but with extra features, are not worth paying extra for.


  Real Networks' move is another sign that the software industry is going hybrid. Mixing elements of proprietary software, where the source-code is tightly controlled, with open-source programs enable firms to expand a market, harvest the ideas of others and, they hope, still make money. Even Microsoft is edging this way: it recently announced that partners can now look at but not modify or reuse the source-code for Passport, its controversial digital-identity service.

  In 1998 Netscape made a dangerous copy。


  the contact between coach and employee not solving all difficulties at work

  3、請回答 22 題。


  4、1. This company has been involved in diversifying its business activities.

  2. Although this company is doing well, it has a number of internal difficulties to deal with

  3. This company has reduced the profits it makes on individual items

  4. One statistic is a less accurate guide to this company’s performance than another

  5. The conditions which have helped this company are likely to be less favourable in the future

  6. This company’s share price has been extremely volatile over the last twelve months

  7. This company is likely to be the subject of a takeover bid in the near future

  8. This company’s performance exemplifies a widely held belief

  A Chemical Company

  Masterson’s interim pre-tax profits growth of 20% was somewhat inflated as a result of the income received from the disposal of several of the company’s subsidiaries. The underlying 8% rise in operating profits is a more realistic gauge of the company’s true progress. However, Masterson’s impending merger with Bentley and Knight and its appointment of a new chief executive should mean that the company will be able to sustain growth for the foreseeable fut5ure. The share price has varied little during the course of the year and now stands at £ 6.75

  B Hotel Group

  During the past year the Bowden Hotel Group has acquired 77 new properties, thus doubling in size . last week the group reported pre-tax profits of £ 88 million in the first six months of the year, ahead of expectations and helped by a strong performance from its London-based hotels and newly expanded US business. However,there is still some way to go. Integration of the new acquisitions is still not complete and, while the share price has risen recently, major problems with integration have yet to be solved.

  C High-tech Company

  This time last year a share in Usertech was worth just over £ 1. six months ago it was worth £ 40. today it is priced at under £ 8 . if proof were need, here is an illustration of how much of a lottery the technology market can be. But some technology companies are fighting back and Usertech is one of them . What has renewed excitement in the company is the opening of its new American offices in Dallas and its ambitious plans to expand its user base in both North and Latin America.

  D Building Company

  Renton’s share price has risen gradually over the past year from £2.4 to £ 3.8 . The company has been successful in choosing prime location for its buildings and has benefited from the buoyant demand for housing. Whilst this demand is expected to slow down somewhat during the next year, investors are encouraged by the company’s decision to move into building supermarkets. Work has already begun on two sites in London, and the company is expected to sign a contract within the next month for building four large supermarkets in Scotland.

  E Pottery Manufacturer

  Milton Dishes has been through a shake-up over the past year. The group, which has been cutting margins and improving marketing, may post a small profit this year. The many members of the Milton family, who between them own 58 per cent of the business, have been watching the share price rise steadily and several are looking to sell. Trade rival Ruskin has bought up just over 17 percent of the shares and could well be spurred into further action by the signs of a recovery at the firm.

  5、1. Genuine feedback would release resources to be used elsewhere.

  2. Managers are expected to enable their staff to work effectively.

  3. Experts are unlikely to facilitate a move to genuine feedback.

  4. There are benefits when methods of evaluating performance have been negotiated.

  5. Appraisals tend to focus on the nature of the face-to-face relationship between employees and their line managers.

  6. The idea that employees are responsible for what they do seems reasonable.

  7. Despite experts’ assertion, management structures prevent genuine feedback

  8. An increasing amount of effort is being dedicated to the appraisal process.


  Performance appraisal is on the up and up. It used to represent the one time of year when getting on with the work was put on hold while enormous quantities of managemen hours were spent in the earnest ritual of rating and ranking performance. Now the practice is even more frequent. This of course makes it all the more important how appraisal is conducted. Human resources professionals claim that managers should strive for objectivity and thus for feedback rather than judgement. But the simple fact of the matter is that the nature of hierarchy distorts the concept of feedback because performance measure are conceived hierarchically. Unfortunately, all too many workers suffer from the injustices that this generates.


  The notion behind performance appraisal- that workers should be held accountable for their performance-is plausible. However, the evidence suggests that the premise is wrong. Contrary to assumptions appraisal is not an effective means of performance improvement- it is judgement imposed rather than feedback, a judgement imposed by the hierarchy. Useful feedback , on the other hand, would be information that told both the manager and worker how well the work system functioned, and suggested ways to make it better.


  Within the production system at the car manufacturer Toyota, there is nothing that is recognizable as performance appraisal. Every operation in the system has an associated measure. The measure has been worked out between the operators and their manager. In every case, the measure is related to the purpose of the work. That measure is the basis of feedback to the manager and worker alike. Toyota’s basic idea is expressed in the axiom “bad news first” . Both managers and workers are psychologically safe in the knowledge that it is the system- not the worker –that is the primary influence on performance. It is management’s responsibility to ensure that the workers operate in a system that facilitates their performance.


  In many companies , performance appraisal springs from misguided as assumptions. To judge achievement, managers use date about each worker’s activity, not an evaluation of the process or system’s achievement of purpose. The result is that performance appraisal involves managers’ judgement overruling their staff’s, ignoring the true influences on performance. Thus the appraisal experience becomes a question of pleasing the boss, particularly in meetings, which is psychologically unsafe and socially driven, determining who is “in” and who is “ out”.


  When judgement is replaced by feedback in the true sense, organizations will have a lot more time to devote to their customers and their business. No time will be wasted in appraisal . This requires a fundamental shift in the way we think about the organization of performance appraisals, which almost certainly will not be forthcoming from the human resources profession.












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