Cue Card # 8: Describe someone who has started a business

IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card # 8

Describe someone you know who has started a business.

You should say:

  • who this person is
  • what work this person does
  • why this person decided to start a business

and explain whether you would like to do the same kind of work as this person.

[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:

I would like to thank you first for the opportunity you have given me to talk about a person who runs a business and is personally known to me. In fact, one of my cousins has recently started a web-designing company in our hometown and he is doing great. He has already got a few clients and I am happy for my cousin. He has a strong determination and I am sure he will take the company to a great height.

The cousin I am talking about who owns the website designing company is Andrew and he is a computer graduate. He is my maternal cousin and in our school days, we were very close. Despite our mutual understanding and respect for each other, we are not as close as we used to be. However, when I visited his office a couple of weeks ago, we talked for an hour and he introduced me to some of his office staff.

Andrew is the CEO of his company and the company is called ‘Design Paradise’. As the founder of the company, he literally does everything. He manages clients, communicates with them, creates the design concept, interacts with the employees and manages projects. After his graduation from Edge Hill University, he worked as a web designer for more than four years and afterwards decided to start his own company. He established his company, Design Paradise, in 2016.

I know him as a talented individual with a passion for doing something transcending. And as per a discussion I had with him, he decided to start a company because he wanted to do something more than adding some projects’ names to his portfolio and earning monthly wages. He told me that starting a company and then successfully running it offers plenty of benefits as a business owner can become his own boss, follow his dream, set his own working hours, employ several others, achieve personal fulfilment and enjoy more vacations. From the discussion, I can understand he did not want to work from 9 to 5 every weekday for the rest of his life and aspired to chase his own dream.

My university major is not computer science, so I believe starting a web designing and software development firm would not be a practical idea for me. Since I am doing my graduation in English Literature, I would rather start a company that focuses more on writing and publishing rather than writing codes for websites and software. However, my experience of vising my cousin’s office was excellent and the way he is managing his company is something I would no doubt follow.

Model Answer 2:

Maruf Adil, my childhood friend, is a very enterprising and upbeat personality. Currently working as a banker, he had tried a number of different jobs in the past apparently for the purpose of learning different kinds of “trades”. Now, why would he want to learn different kinds of trades, one might ask? Well, he wanted to be an entrepreneur. So, a few months ago, when he told me that he wanted to start a catering business, I wasn’t really very surprised.

I felt actually glad for him because lately, he was complaining a lot about his current job, and he wanted a bit more flexible schedule around his life because he wanted to spend some quality time with his elderly parents.

Now, if you ask me whether I would like to work in the catering business or not, I would probably answer negatively mainly because my introverted personality wouldn’t exactly allow me to excel in a profession where I would need to communicate with different kinds of people almost constantly. One needs to be pleasant, highly creative, consistent and organized, which isn’t exactly how I would describe myself, in order to remain competitive in any kind of business. Besides, running a successful catering business would require a lot of preparation, cleaning and serving, and I don’t really think that I would be able to keep up with so much work.

Finally, I have never been a risk taker in life, and it would take a substantial amount of money to start a catering business. With no prior experience in a restaurant or catering business, I don’t think that I would be willing to take such a risk with my hard-earned money. Unlike my entrepreneurial friend, I guess that I just like to operate from a safe zone while actually, business is all about taking risks.

Describe someone you know who has started a business.

You should say:

  • who this person is
  • what work this person does
  • why this person decided to start a business

and explain whether you would like to do the same kind of work as this person.

A few more ideas to talk about for this Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card Topic:

Idea # 1:
My father has recently started a rather interesting business. Despite being in his late sixties, he is still active and did not want to spend his retirement years idly. This is why he initiated this business. All of the family members wholeheartedly welcomed his idea.

After retiring from his teaching career as a college professor about six months ago, my father started a tutorial home where he teaches English and Mathematics to interested students. He has also employed two young and talented tutors to help him in this coaching centre.

My father decided to begin this coaching centre (or “tutoring home” as he likes to mention) so that he can still work and remain engaged in work. He believes that it would help him lead a better and more meaningful life while also helping students in their education.

I would perhaps not want to start this business because I do not have any skills or interest in running a coaching centre. I would rather be in a job in a foreign country and then decide whether to start a business or not. But it would be at least a decade later from now.

Idea # 2:
One of my distant cousins has recently started a business, and it is quite interesting. Most importantly, she is enjoying it and earning a substantial amount of money to support her family.

Jessica, this distant cousin of mine, has always been passionate about cooking, and after she quit her job a few months ago, she decided to take cooking as a way to earn some money. So, she has subscribed to the Foodpanda platform as a food supplier and cook. Soon after, she started getting orders and making money.

Jessica quit her job because she has two young kids to look after at home. But soon, the need for a steady earning kept buzzing her, and that is why she started this to earn some money. This is more like a freelance cooking profession than a real-world business, but I still respect her endeavour so much.

I would not take this as a profession or start a similar business because I am still a student, and I’ve very little knowledge of cooking.

Idea # 3:
One of my college buddies, whom everyone thought was very lazy and pampered by his parents, has recently started a gymnasium in our area, and it is doing quite well. The business is booming and everyone now has something positive to opine about this friend.

His name is Michel, and all of a sudden, he one day emerged as a gym owner just after we graduated from college. He is also doing his post-graduation course at a large university now. Besides, studying he is also running his gym business. Interestingly, he regularly uses the gym and his physical transformation so far is amazing. He has shed almost 20 pounds in just 5 or 6 months.

One day Michel told me that he decided to start the Gym because he thought it would help him access a gym whenever he wanted. However, he also had some business ideas that he wanted to materialise. As planned, this gymnasium was born.

I would definitely want to start a similar business because it would be a hit without a doubt. It would also mean that I would be able to earn my own money and enjoy some economic freedom.

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