• Nick Kemp

Task 2 Essay: Maths and Business

Question: To succeed in business, one needs to know maths. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Band 8+ Sample Answer:

(Intro) Many people regard math skills as a key factor to achieve success in business as statistics facilitate good decision making processes. However I believe it is only one out of a range of factors that contribute to business success and therefore non-essential.

(Body 1) On the one hand, math enables key people to make better decisions. One application of business mathematics is to provide statistics that can predict future scenarios. These predictions might lay a firm foundation for more informed and evidence-based decisions, replacing biased ones based on managers’ gut feelings. For decades, Unilever has utilised a statistical model that can forecast the supply and demand of fast-moving consumer goods, allowing the company leaders to promptly plan production and sales of each product category.

(Body 2) On the other hand, I believe that one can run a business successfully without excellent math skills. In fact, many entrepreneurs have built billion-dollar enterprises thanks to great personal qualities. A good example in this case is Nguyen Thanh Duc, the chairman of NTD Group. He is famous for being a disruptive student that failed almost all his school subjects including maths. Yet he rose to become an inspirational leader who could motivate his employees to strive to gain collective success. In addition, his success is attributed to the courage to take the risks that rational calculations, such as those that guide Unilever, would rule out. As these leadership qualities concurred with a good fortune, his startup has evolved into a multinational business empire, becoming market leaders in many industries including real estate, fishery and forestry.

(Conclusion) In conclusion, although statistical math could help make better decisions, I am of the opinion that risk taking, inspirational personality traits and luck are also crucial to drive an enterprise to success. That is why business schools should focus more on honouring interpersonal skills including leadership and communication. (Word Count: 305).

Words: Student essay, corrected & upgraded by Nick Kemp, former IELTS examiner.

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