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# A recent study of an insurance company's underwriters indica

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A recent study of an insurance company's underwriters indica [#permalink]  13 Feb 2019, 06:23
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66% (01:10) correct 33% (02:12) wrong based on 12 sessions
A recent study of an insurance company's underwriters indicated that those who worked in pleasant physical surroundings were 25 percent more productive than their peers in unpleasant physical surroundings. Objective criteria for evaluating job performance included caseload and complexity of cases. This shows that improving workers' environments increases those workers' productivity.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the conclusion above?

(A) On average, less-productive employees spend no fewer hours per day at their workstations than do their more-productive peers.
(B) Unpleasant surroundings give employees less motivation to work hard than more pleasant surroundings do.
(C) The more-productive employees are generally rewarded with pleasant office space.
(D) More-productive employees do not work any more hours than their less-productive peers.
(E) Peer pressure discourages employees in crowded, unpleasant surroundings from making phone calls to their own family members during work time.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: A recent study of an insurance company's underwriters indica [#permalink]  23 Feb 2019, 20:50
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(A) So everyone spends the same amount of time in their work environment? This is more of an assumption than a weakener. It certainly doesn't challenge the conclusion at all.

(B) This strengthens the conclusion.

(C) Aha, this is a good weakener. The argument says that more productive workers are more productive because they have pleasant surroundings. But this choice says that they were good workers even before they received the pleasant surroundings. So being a good worker causes you to have pleasant surroundings, a complete reversal of the idea that having pleasant surroundings causes you to be a good worker.

(D) Again, this is more of an assumption. The opposite claim, that more productive workers do work more hours, would be a weakener, explaining the increased productivity without the nicer space.

(E) This would suggest that unpleasant conditions produce more productivity. But this is false. Hence, this peer pressure must not lead to any increased productivity.
Re: A recent study of an insurance company's underwriters indica   [#permalink] 23 Feb 2019, 20:50
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