Cue Card Sample

An ambition you have not yet achieved - Cue Card # 769

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

Describe an ambition that you have not yet achieved.

You should say:

  • what ambition it is
  • why you haven’t achieved it yet
  • what you did or did not do to achieve it

and explain how you plan to achieve it.

[Instruction: 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:

When I was growing up as a child, I held many ambitions in my heart. Of course, most of my ambitions weren’t really realistic at that time except for only a few. Today, I would like to talk about one of those few ambitions which, I thought, was quite achievable, and yet I didn’t manage to achieve it to this date.

Well, I wanted to hold a public office, like being a city mayor or becoming a member of parliament. Now, I am not too sure how many people would even consider holding a public office as some kind of “ambition”, but it surely was (and still is) one to me. By the way, I started to hide this secret ambition in my heart since the time I started attending my primary school – a primary school which was actually established by a very respected member of parliament of my country back then, who also happened to hail from my own area.

So, anyway, to achieve this ambition of mine, I became a young member of a major political party of my country when I started high school. Then I also started to learn about the political manifesto of my political organization. At one point, I started to get even some invitations from the local leaders of my political party to attend their meetings once in a while. But, then I realized being a political activist or leader was a rather cumbersome task and time-consuming affair, and I just didn’t have that kind of time or support (especially from my family) since they rather wanted me to focus on my studies first.

But, now, I don’t really have to worry about my studies anymore since I am done with it.  All I need to do now to achieve this ambition is to keep earning enough money, and networking with more and more people to make myself familiar with them in order to garner their support. Finally, I also need to get involved with more and more social welfare activities so that the people in my area can trust me with their votes.


Model Answer 2:

We all know that having ambitions is a part of human nature, and it often helps us achieve great things in life. Everyone has at least one thing they aspire to achieve in their life. I, too, have a significant ambition that I have not yet achieved. For this excellent topic, I would like to thank you and talk about this ambition of mine that I dream to fulfil someday.

What ambition it is:
My ambition is to become a successful entrepreneur and start my own company. It sounds simple, but it is not easy to achieve. 

Why you haven’t achieved it yet:
I have not yet achieved this ambition because I am still studying and gaining the necessary knowledge and skills to start a business. I am currently pursuing a degree in business administration, and I believe that it is crucial to have a strong educational background before venturing into entrepreneurship.

What you did or did not do to achieve it:
To achieve this ambition, I have been working hard to excel in my studies, attending various seminars and workshops related to entrepreneurship and business management, and gaining practical experience through internships in reputed companies. I have also been networking with successful entrepreneurs to gain valuable insights into the industry.

And explain how you plan to achieve it:
To achieve my ambition, I plan to continue learning and gaining practical experience in the field of business. I want to start small by launching a startup with a unique idea and gradually growing my business. I believe that patience, hard work, and perseverance are crucial in achieving any ambition, and I am determined to make my dream a reality.

Sample Answer 3:

I believe that having ambitions and goals is actually what keeps us moving forward in life.  Of course, I also think that it is not always easy to achieve those ambitions.  Today, I would like to talk about one such ambition of mine – the ambition to start my own interior design firm - which I still haven’t achieved. But I am quite positive that I will keep trying to achieve it because that’s actually my career dream in the long run.

Now, being an interior designer itself is a great success, if you actually come to think of it, since it requires a lot of hard work and effort to succeed in this particular career field.  After all, currently, I am already working as a successful Junior Interior Designer, and I am quite enjoying it so far.  But, having a steady job at a successful company, and actually starting your own company are two completely different things since starting a company doesn’t only require a great deal of practical work experience in the relevant field, but also a thorough understanding of the industry. At least, that’s what one of my senior co-workers has told me.

So, I guess that I will have to wait at least a few more years before I can actually start my company, even though, I have already contacted some start-up businesses to help me understand the nitty-gritty of starting a company, as well as some banks to help me with my finances.  Besides, I have also requested my senior managers to assign me some additional tasks so that I can familiarize myself with the trends and technologies of this dynamic industry. 

So, again, I guess that I am on the right track as far as achieving my goal is concerned in the next few years.  But, before that can actually happen, I will first need to rent a small space where I can run some experimentation with some of my interior design ideas.  Besides, I also need to visit some large real estate firms in my city who actually would be interested in some of my creative design ideas and schemes for their offices, shops, flats and apartments.

Part 3: Detail Discussion

Q. Do you believe our ambitions help us do better in life? [How?]
Answer: Yes, I firmly believe that having ambitions helps us do better in our life. Actually, in a way, it is our ambitions that not only drive or motivate us to achieve better things in life, but also help our world move forward. Without these ambitions, we wouldn’t really have the urge to overcome all the obstacles in this world and remain steadfast to utilize our God-given talents, skills and abilities to the fullest. But, more importantly, ambitions don’t only help us become successful, but also make us “humble” because we know our “limits” after trying our best. 

Q. What ambitions do children in your country usually have?
Answer: In my country, children like to dream big, really big! In fact, the sky is their limit when it comes to having ambition. Some of them want to become top-class medical doctors so that they can serve their people while others want to become astronauts to explore space and unknown horizons. Some of them also want to become world-class engineers, technologists or inventors so that they can build or create amazing structures and/or things to awe the entire world. And then, there are some children whose only ambitions are to earn a lot of money to become happy and live peacefully ever after!

Q. Do our ambitions change with our age? [Why/ Why not?]
Answer: Changing our life’s expectations as we age, or changing the way we think, is a natural phenomenon in our lives. In fact, if we ought to think of ourselves as some kinds of smart human beings, we constantly need to change our ambitions or expectations in life because there are just so many variable factors out there in the world - either to threaten our lifestyles or to open up some new doors of opportunities for us. Besides, sometimes, we need to change our ambitions in life to rediscover our own abilities and talents in a new way. 

Q. Why are some people very ambitious about their careers while some are not?
Answer: In my humble opinion, this disparity with regard to having career ambitions exists because of 3 rather common reasons:

The first reason is that some people are really hard-working while others are not so much for reasons that are beyond their control. Secondly, some people are rather happy and content with their existing conditions, as far as their careers are concerned, and they don’t want to complicate their lives unnecessarily because of some career ambitions. Finally, some people don’t have career ambitions because they are just lazy and don’t really want to work hard.

Q. What are some disadvantages of having too many ambitions in life?
Answer: Having ambitions in life is certainly a good thing, but having too many of them at the same time can be a bit too problematic, to say the least. Anyway, one of the major disadvantages of having too many ambitions is that it would probably drain out all of our resources and energies, only to leave us to find in the end that none of our ambitions are actually fulfilled or achieved. Another major problem is that having too many ambitions almost inevitably creates an imbalance in our work and family life, which certainly is not a good thing in the long run because, in that scenario, we will be too busy pursuing our career ambitions. 

Q. What does success look like to you?
Answer: Different people have different ideas and definitions for success as I have my own. Anyway, my idea of success is that I want to live a life where I am not unnecessarily depending on others. In other words, I want to be self-sufficient in all aspects of my life. To become financially successful, I don’t want to do so much either – so much so that I don’t have enough time or energy to spend some quality time with my family members and loved ones. Finally, my idea of success is that I am not only trying to make myself happy but also contributing something to the betterment of my neighbours and fellow countrymen.

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