Cue Card # 132: An idea you had for improving something

IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card # 132

Describe an idea you had for improving something at work or college.

You should say:

  • when and where you had your idea
  • what your idea was
  • whom you told about your idea

and explain why you thought your idea would make an improvement.

[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you are going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]


Model Answer 1: [Improving something at office]

An idea can change the world and great innovations have always been based on simple ideas. So when some ideas seem quite ordinary, given enough thoughts and working passionately for it can bring extraordinary results just as I experienced in my first job about 7 years ago.

I am talking about a time when I took my first job as a fresh university graduate at a large company that manufactures electronic goods and home appliances. Just after the job placement, the company decided to send the team, including me, to a remote area where people mostly relied on traditional lifestyle and had little interest in some kind of expensive electronic items. I didn’t understand the company’s decision to open a huge showroom and support centre in this remote area and their claim that this area had a huge business potential! Anyway, after six months or so, I and a few of my team members started to feel discourages because there was hardly any business and our management started to push us constantly. I decided to quit the job but then an idea popped up in my mind.

I wrote down my scattered ideas first and then after a few careful revisions, I presented the written version of it to my manager. After his approval, I send it to the higher management in our head office.

The idea had three parts. The first part was to hire a few local young job seekers as part-timers. The reason behind it was to encourage local residents to talk freely to someone who they already knew. The second part was to let people hire our goods for a maximum of three weeks without any cost and then decide about the purchase. Our head office sent us a few products only for that purpose when they were convinced about the idea. The final idea was to let people pay half of the price in advance and then the rest of the amount in equated instalments.

It was so great an idea and initiative that the sales boomed in just six months and people started to show their interests in our products to a great extent. The business enhanced and it made a positive impact on our team members. The upper management was happy and I got a promotion a year later. I was so proud to be a part of this success.


Model Answer 2: [Improving something for me at college]

When I was attending my junior college about 10 years ago, I wasn’t exactly very bright student, especially, when it came to studying computer subjects. So, I needed to do something to improve my standing as a computer student, and here is the story of that idea and effort that helped me.

My computer teacher did all he could to teach us about computer hardware, but while the other students were having fun learning all kinds of new things about a computer, I was lagging way, way behind. In fact, every time, I was trying to learn about the functionalities of the different parts of a computer, I would simply mix up the things. Then, I told myself that there had to be a better way to learn this computer thing.

Luckily, I knew a senior brother, who used to work as a lab assistant at one of the computer labs of my college, and I told him about my problem. After listening to my problem, he simply advised me to spend some times with him every day at his computer lab and follow his works and instruction. By the way, I told about my idea to my teacher, and he was very much okay with it. So, anyway, I exactly kept doing what that senior brother had told me, and as I kept following his works with his computer, things started to become clearer to me. And, all these times, as I was learning about the computer hardware from my senior brother, my confidence showed in my computer class as well. Finally, after one month, I did learn about computer hardware really well.

Anyway, I thought that my idea would make an improvement, primarily because I would learn in a rather relaxed environment. Besides, I felt like I could ask all kinds of silly questions to that senior brother of mine which was not possible for me to do in a regular class environment.

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