Cue Card Sample

IELTS Cue Card Sample 502 - Describe your idea of making a good first impression

IELTS Speaking Part 2: IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card.

Describe your idea of making a good first impression in a job interview.

You should say:

  • why it is important.
  • whether it is important to make a good last impression as well
  • in what ways would you do it in your job interview

and explain how to make a good first impression in a job interview.

[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 must admit that up until recently, I didn’t really care that much about making a good first impression at a job interview, probably because I am from the old school. But, then I had to change my mind because interviews these days have become so progressive in nature and intense.

However, back in 14 plus years, I don’t really think that interviews were so much intense, perhaps because there wasn’t that much competition then. So, unlike now, people didn’t really have to worry about all the details about facing a Human Resource Manager.

So, why it is important to make a good first impression anyway? Well, the answer to this question is so ridiculously simple like a good first impression can actually get our dream job which we have been trying to get for years! Of course, when I say that a good first impression can get us our dream job, I don’t mean to say that our educational qualifications, diplomas and professional certifications, areas and the level of expertise, a specific set of skills and amount of work experiences don’t really matter. In fact, they do, but without the good first impression and preparation for the interview, it is highly unlikely that the hiring manager would even go that far. It might sound pretty strange but, then luckily, however, it doesn’t really take much of an effort to create a good first impression. So, how to make a good first impression?

I should mention that I also believe making a good last impression is also vital to secure a job.

Well, we should try to dress appropriately to impress our hiring manager, and the common consensus about dressing appropriately is that we don’t wear jeans, sneaker/sports shoes or t-shirts when going to a formal interview. Having a nicely-written Resume/CV handy, speaking up firmly and yet in a soft voice instead of mumbling, using standard professional terms and language and being confident and prepared to answer any kind of questions without pretending to answer some questions which we don’t have any clue about are some of the things we can do to create a very good first impression.



Sample Answer 2:
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to talk to you about how to make a good first impression in a job interview. I will talk about why this is important; things someone can do to help create that perfect ‘first impression’; how to leave the interviewer with a good ‘last impression’ and finally I will wish the success for a job searcher.

In a professional situation, first impressions are extremely important. If for example, someone is attending a job interview, he needs to create a good impression as soon as he meets the interviewer. That way the employer is more likely to want to offer him the job.

There are many things a candidate can do to help create the best possible impression. For example, being on time! If someone has an appointment, it is important to arrive a few minutes early so that the meeting can start exactly on time. He should make sure he is appropriately dressed. If it is a job interview, it is a good idea to dress smartly. It will help a candidate to feel confident and will make him look more professional. He should also make sure that he is clean and well presented, he should not smell of cigarette smoke. Finally, the candidate must make sure that he does not have anything caught between his teeth! He should look in a mirror before he goes in to make sure he looks OK.

The smile helps a candidate to relax and will make him look friendly. In many cultures, it is important to make eye contact with the other person – but a candidate should not stare as it might uncomfortable for the interviewer! For a job interview, it is usual to shake hands. A candidate might want to practice doing this so it will feel natural to him. He should wait for the interviewer to ask him to sit down. When he sits down, he should try to look confident and relaxed, sit back on the chair and thank the interviewers for inviting him in to talk to them. He must not slouch and look too relaxed, but also he should not perch on the front of the seat either – this way, the candidate will look uncomfortable and it will make his interviewers feel uncomfortable too!

A candidate will also create a good impression at an interview if he has prepared thoroughly for the meeting. He must ensure that he has researched the job and the company. He must be clear about what he can offer them and why he would be good at the job.

When he answers questions, he should try to be positive and enthusiastic as well as friendly. He needs to show his personality as well as his skills. At the end of the interview, he needs to think about the last impression he makes on the employer. That way, they will remember the candidate more positively. The candidate should thank the person for seeing him, then stand up, shake hands again and smile as he leaves the room. The candidate wants the interviewer to think as he leaves- ‘what a lovely candidate, I would like him to come and work with me!’

I hope if a candidate follows this advice it will help him to form a good impression at interviews when he meets people for the first time in a formal environment.

[ Written by - Lucy Marris ]

Sample Answer 3:
A job interview is an event or arrangement when the employer tries to judge the overall competency of an applicant for the post. Hence, this is an important issue to consider. Now, I will describe the importance and few preparation tips for the first impression which are beneficial for a job interview.

It is quite natural that the employer will try to critically examine how competent the applicant is for the post. So, if an applicant cannot prove his worth at the interview board, the job will be offered to someone more proficient with the requirements of the authority. Undoubtedly, everyone should agree on the fact that the first impression is the most important thing and the memory of the first meeting lasts for longer with the people.

If you make a good first impression, in the beginning, it is better to continue till the last. In fact, when you start behaving politely in the opening, the audience or the employer authority will expect you to be the same until the last moment. If you even slightly deviate from the position, they will notice the fact and that may help them taking any negative decision on you. Certainly, the situations in an interview board will change and all the situations might not be in your favour or under your control. The interviewers will try to test the applicants in different ways and analyse the reactions. In fact, this is a strategy to assess an applicant. So, if you do not continue the first impression, there are chances that you will miss the job.

I would follow some simple but effective techniques to prove myself as a competent candidate. Professionalism is the key issue here. Almost all employers want their employees to be professional in all possible terms. Aside from this feature, they also want their employees to be well-groomed, clean and tidy.

Making a good first impression is really a hard task and everyone cannot do it effectively. There are some basic principles for this task. First of all, as a job candidate, you have to learn about the company. Then you should know your job. When you will apply for a post, the interviewers will ask you about the company and the jobs you are supposed to execute. In such situations, it is really difficult to answer if you do not have the right data. Thereby, collecting important data about the job and company helps create a positive impression on the authority. Wearing formal dresses is the other important thing to do. You cannot move casually for a job interview and it will prove your insincerity. Besides, you should also be present at the interview venue before the scheduled hour. Talking politely and listening more will help you to a great extent. Moreover, keep your answers short as much possible and to the point. If anyone can perform all the activities and have the luck with him, there are chances to create a good first impression at the job interview.


More Ideas to talk about this Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card topic:

Topic: Describe your idea of making a good first impression in a job interview.

1. Making a good first impression is important because it helps you being selected for the job. Besides, I think making the last impression is equally important like the first impression. I would do it by knowing the job description properly. I believe the best way to make a good impression is to get proper ideas about the job. The employers want to know how much the candidate knows about the job and company and if they are satisfied, the impression lasts longer.

2. Having a good first impression in a job interview is important as the impression lasts till the last working day of the employee. I would do it by following the right dress code for the interview. When the employers see a nice-looking man, they start assuming something good about him and the impression becomes pleasant. So, I think that if a candidate can go with the nice attires to attend an interview, surely s/ he will have a positive result in the end.

3. A good first impression is important because it helps create a permanent impression on the mind of the employer. Similarly, this is also important to have a good last impression. I would like to do it with punctuality. I would like to be at the interview spot on time. It will help the employers understand my punctuality and also raises the chances of getting the job. I will follow the method during an interview.

4. A first impression is important as it will remain the same as long as someone works at any organization. So, to get something good, you need to have a good first impression but the story is not the same as the last impression. I have a plan to take only the necessary essentials during an interview. In fact, I do not want them to know about my entire profile unless they demand so. I will take the academic credentials and other necessary documents in a small file. It will help create a good impression on me.

5. Since the good first impression lasts longer, it is highly important. I would plan to create a good first impression in a job interview. At first, I will explain myself and reasons for applying for the job. Then I will explain gradually every detail they want to know from me. By this way, I believe it would be a good first impression on my employers.

If you can talk about this cue card topic, you should be able to answer the following Cue Card Topics as well:

1.  Describe something important to impress an interviewer.
2.  Describe your experience of a formal interview.
3.  Describe an important quality to get a job. 

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