GT Reading Test 55 Section 2 - Qualities that make a great barista & Running a meeting

General Training Reading Mock Test 55:

Section 1  |  Section 2  |  Section 3  |

SECTION 2:  Questions 15-27

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 15-27, which are based on Reading Passages below.

Write answers to questions in boxes 15-27 on your answer sheet.

GT Reading Sample - "Qualities that make a great barista" & "Running a meeting"

Read the text below and answer Questions 15-22.

Qualities that make a great barista

How to become a great maker and server of espresso-based coffee drinks.

Truly great baristas take the time to develop the key skills that will enable them to deliver the highest possible quality of coffee-based beverage and service. As a barista, you must make a concerted effort to listen to your clientele and make sure the drinks you produce are correct in all respects. This is particularly important when you consider the sheer range and complexity of modern coffee drinks, which may start from a single (or double) shot of espresso but can include many additional elements. If you become distracted by the conversation that is going on nearby, you may ultimately miss the mark from a service perspective.

One thing that separates a great from a good barista is that the former is constantly busy and has a strong work ethic. You will often catch a great barista rinsing out the filter in their machines, for example, as this erodes the build-up of burnt coffee oil that can begin to impact on the quality and taste of each espresso shot. Similarly, do not be surprised to hear the sound of the coffee grinder at work. This highlights the keen attention to detail that distinguishes skilled baristas, as they have the desire and the awareness to make every drink with completely fresh ground coffee. This type of attentiveness helps baristas to get the most from the coffee that they use, as many of the delicate aromas found in espresso are lost when exposed to the open air.

Timing is everything when it comes to producing the perfect cup of coffee. A great barista knows precisely when to finish the extraction of espresso, at the point when the balance of flavour has reached its optimum levels. They also understand how important this is; those who act too soon are left with a drink without flavour while those who delay the finish risk burning the beverage and tainting it with a bitter after-taste.

When it comes to customer service, there is so much more to a coffee shop experience than drinking perfectly roasted blends. The atmosphere and the ambience also play a central role, and the interaction that the customer has with their barista sets the tone for an enjoyable experience. Great baristas ask their customers how their day is going or what they’re going to do later; they read local newspapers and keep up with issues that really matter, all of which make a real difference in a competitive marketplace.

Questions 15-22
Complete the notes below.
Choose ONE WORD ONLY from the text for each answer.

Write your answers in boxes 15-22 on your answer sheet.

Notes on being a great barista

Serving the customer
●   Be sure you make drinks that are 15 .................... for the customer
●   Ignore any 16 ....................  around you

Using the equipment
●   Clean the machine 17 .................... regularly
●   Grinding
     –  always use ground coffee that is 18 ....................
     –  remember that air causes the smell to fade

Making the coffee
●   Know when to stop making the espresso
     – too early reduces the 19 ....................
     – too late makes the coffee 20 ....................

Giving good customer service
●   Talk to your customers
     – ask about the customers’ 21 ....................
     – know something about the important 22 ....................  in the area

Read the text below and answer Questions 23-27.

Running a meeting

If you're running a meeting for the first time, here are a few tips to help you.

Prior to the meeting, think about the seating and arrange it in an appropriate way. A circle can work well for informal meetings, but sometimes the furniture cannot be re-arranged or rows are more suitable. Consider the participants and decide what is best. Before people arrive, it’s a good idea to designate someone to stand at the entrance and greet everyone.

If the meeting is small, start by requesting everyone to introduce themselves and to give a bit of relevant information in addition to their name. This may be what they do or why they are there. For all meetings, you need to introduce the chairperson, i.e., yourself, and any other outside speakers you have invited.

Next, make sure everyone can see the agenda or has a copy of it. Briefly run through the items then take one point at a time, and make sure the group doesn’t stray from that point until it has been dealt with. Encourage participation at all times so that attendees can contribute but don’t let everyone talk at the same time. Try to keep discussions positive, but don’t ignore conflicts – find a solution for them and make sure they are resolved before they grow.

Summarise points regularly and make clear action points. Write these down and don’t forget to note who’s doing what, and by when. Encourage everyone to feel able to volunteer for tasks and roles. It can help if the more experienced members of the group offer to share skills and knowledge, but don’t let the same people take on all the work as this can lead to tension within the group.

At the end, remember to thank everyone for turning up and contributing. It can be nice to follow the meeting with a social activity like sharing a meal or going to a cafe.

Questions 23-27
Complete the chart below.
Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the text for each answer.
Write your answers in boxes 23-27 on your reading answer sheet.

Tips on running a meeting

Arrange seats according to the types of meeting and participants
In small meetings, ask people for some 23 .................... as they introduce themselves
Make sure the 24 .................... is available to everyone.
Involve people in the discussion and solve any 25 ....................  quickly if they arise
Note action points and who is responsible for them
Avoid 26 .................... by involving a range of people in tasks
Thanks people for coming, and possibly have some kind of 27 .................... afterwards

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