IELTS Speaking Part 3: Choosing work & Work-Life balance

Topic: Choosing work & Work-Life balance

  1. What kinds of jobs do young people not want to do in your country?
  2. Who is best at advising young people about choosing a job: teachers or parents?
  3. Is money always the most important thing when choosing a job?
  4. Do you agree that many people nowadays are under pressure to work longer hours and take less holiday?
  5. What is the impact on society of people having a poor work-life balance?
  6. Could you recommend some effective strategies for governments and employers to ensure people have a good work-life balance?

Sample Answer:

Q. 1. What kinds of jobs do young people not want to do in your country?
Answer: Well, in my country, we have almost always had a big problem of unemployment among young people, and therefore, there aren’t exactly too many jobs that they don’t want to do. However, as far as I have found out, jobs like “outside sales”, “medical representatives” and other “service-oriented” jobs, that require longer hours of work, are not looked upon very favourably by the young adults in my country. They don’t also like “elementary teaching” job because they require a lot of patience (after all, teaching little kids can be really challenging).

Q. 2. Who is best at advising young people about choosing a job: teachers or parents?
Answer: In my humble opinion, teachers are best at advising young people about choosing a job primarily because they are usually the ones who work tirelessly at schools and colleges to unlock the potentials of young adults. Besides, through the continuous interaction with their students in classes, it is the teachers who are better positioned to identify the skills and expertise of the young people and thus being able to guide them to choose careers that are suitable for them.

Q. 3. Is money always the most important thing when choosing a job?
Answer: No, I don’t really think that money is “always” (“always” is the keyword here) the most important thing, when choosing a job, primarily because money doesn’t always buy “happiness” or the “ job satisfaction” no matter how much of it, we really have. Besides, if I am being paid a lot of “money”, but what I do as a “job” is not considered to be “important”, then the chances are that I won’t be able to perform to my full potential despite my best intention. Money is an important thing for us to do a job but I do not believe that it is the most important aspect of a job.

Q. 4. Do you agree that many people nowadays are under pressure to work longer hours and take less holiday?
Answer: Yes, many people are indeed under huge pressure nowadays to work longer hours and enjoy fewer holidays mainly because most of them are struggling to keep up with the soaring living expenses. Then, some people are under pressure to work extra hours also because they are simply being “exploited” by their employers. Then, there is another group of people who are under pressure to work longer hours because they want to meet their additional demand for more comfort and luxuries of lives.

Q. 5. What is the impact on society of people having a poor work-life balance?
Answer: The impact of people, having a poor work-life balance, on society is multi-dimensional. In a society, where people are either working too much or sitting idle for too long, there won’t be enough people to take responsibility in order to carry forward the nation to its full potentials. Working too much would without enough opportunity to relax with families and friends, the people in a society would go through mental depression which, in turn, would result in inefficiency and lesser productivity at works. On the other hands, if people in a society are “sitting idle” for too long, the entire society would be negatively affected by crimes and other anti-social activities.

Q. 6. Could you recommend some effective strategies for governments and employers to ensure people have a good work-life balance?
Answer: Governments and employers can do several things to ensure a good work-life balance for the employees. First, employers can offer “flexibility” with work schedules, whenever possible, so that the employees can have little time to spend with their families and friends in between the work hours. Employers can also allow some “unpaid time off” (not getting paid for the off days) so that their staffs can attend some fun and family events. As for the governments, they can create awareness among people by using different media outlets in order to highlight the benefits of a good work-life balance. Governments can also arrange for an “annual award” option for the companies/employers who actively work to promote “work-life” balance among their employees.