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Sample Response to GMAT AWA Issue Questions

9. “Employees should keep their private lives and personal activities as separate as possible from the workplace.” Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion stated above. Support your views with reasons and/or examples from your own experience, observations, or reading.

Whether employees leave their personal lives entirely behind them when they enter the workplace has became a controversial issue since different people hold different opinion due to their respective angles. Some claim that integrating personal life with work can foster a workplace ambiance that helps everyone do a better job. Others, on the contrary, argue that employees should not allow their personal lives to interfere with their jobs. As far as I am concerned, I shall agree that employees should keep their private lives and personal activities as separate as possible from the workplace. My point of view will be strongly supported by the following three reasons.

In the first place, the most important reason for my view is that entering the workplace with private affairs and personal activities reduces efficiency of the company. As we know, employees in a company usually have the fixed working hours. If they spend time on private affairs and personal activities, it would undoubtedly reduce the time for working, and thus making the company in a low efficiency. Hence, excessive chatting about non-business topics, and the like, are always distracting.

Another point worth noticing is that doing private affairs in the workplace means dishonor to other employees and has bad effects on them. For example, one of my colleagues always telephoned her boyfriend in a loud voice in the office. Working in the same office, we sometimes could not stand such loud voice. Furthermore, it is unfair because we were working hard while she was dealing with private affairs. Soon, other colleagues imitated her to enjoy personal activities in the workplace. Hence, it is obvious that doing personal activities in the workplace is like an infectious disease that can easily spread throughout the whole company.

Of cause, it maybe true that employees who are too aloof --sharing nothing personal with others --may be resented by coworkers who perceive them as arrogant, unfriendly, or uncooperative. On the other hand, sharing private lives and personal activities in workplace may strengthen the communication among employees that is likely to reinforce the organization in some condition. However, this alone does not constitute a sufficient support to the idea that injects personal life into the workplace.

In sum, I believe that employees should keep their personal lives separate from the workplace. Although there are some circumstances in which bringing one's personal life to the job may be productive, for many reasons it is a good idea not to inject personal life into the workplace.


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