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IELTS Cue Card Sample Question – Describe a Workaholic Person You Know 

Are you preparing for the IELTS Test and looking for advice on how to ace the second task of the IELTS Speaking Section? If yes, you are in luck. This post will show you how to top this phase of the test, also known as the Cue Card Section

You might have heard that most test-takers say this is the section of the test where they did the poorest.

Why? Because you must speak for a longer period without being interrupted or asked by the examiner. In addition, you only have a limited amount of time to prepare. 

Please keep reading to see some samples of responses to the cue card topic ‘Describe a workaholic person you know.’

What is the IELTS Cue Card Question?

In the second section of the IELTS. You will be given a task card, also known as a cue card, on which the topic you will be speaking about is written.

The cue card also states the other important elements you should include in your speech.

Some of the most common themes in this section of the test are people and places you know, things you possess, your interests, celebrations, and past events.

You have one minute to prepare and two minutes to speak on the subject.

The examiner keeps the time, and you will be told when your one-minute preparation time and two-minute speech time are up. Following up on your speech, the examiner may ask you more questions.

This part of the test lasts approximately 3-4 minutes. 

How to Answer this Specific Question: “Describe a Workaholic Person You Know”


 Describe a Workaholic Person You Know

Guidelines to Answer this Question

You should say:

  • Who this person is
  • What the job or profession of this person is
  • How you know about this person

And explain how you think this person feels about his/her job.  

  • Think of a person who you think is a workaholic. It could be anyone; a family member, friend, or colleague. Whoever you choose to discuss, ensure that you know a lot about what they do to have enough information and details to share later on. 
  • The moment you have decided on who to talk about, stick to it. Do not try to change your mind later because you do not have a lot of time. 
  • Start jotting down notes. State who this person is and what they do. Share how you know about this person as well. Lastly, explain how you think this person feels about their job. You may also include what you think about the work habit of this person. 
  • Use your time wisely. Simply write keywords and phrases instead of writing sentences. 
  • Make heavy use of high vocabulary and complicated grammar structures to impress the examiner. These will help you achieve a good score on this test section.
  • As you scribble notes, do it quickly while ensuring that you will be able to understand what you have written afterward. It is fine if the examiner does not understand what you have written. The substance and delivery of your speech, not your penmanship, are used to evaluate you.
  • If you want to look over your notes, go ahead and do so. It is okay. You do not lose points for it. 

Sample Responses:  “Describe a Workaholic Person You Know”

Sample Response 1:

“We live in an odd world where some individuals have it easy and have absolutely nothing to worry about, while others are burdened with numerous chores and responsibilities. Of course, not everyone is meant or programmed to carry such enormous duties, but those that do deserve our appreciation and applause. Today, I’d like to discuss with you one of the most workaholic people I know. 

My eldest cousin is the individual I’m referring to. He is a medical doctor. Being a medical doctor is a tremendous duty in and of itself because he needs to treat a number of patients on a regular basis. Some of them are critically ill. He is also an elected public figure in our local city government, which requires him to meet with a large number of individuals on a regular basis to discuss concerns and problems that impact our community. You can’t help but compare him with a “superhuman” when you consider the amount of work he does every day. In addition, he also has to administer an orphanage of about 200 tiny children, taking care of their food, education, and health issues on a daily basis. 

Anyway, I’m not sure how my cousin manages to juggle so many duties at the same time. Then I realized he has an uncanny ability to organize his time. Furthermore, I believe that, as a medical practitioner, he just understands how to stay physically and psychologically fit at all times.”

Follow-up Question 1:

Why do you think other people tend to have more than one job at a time? 


“I think there are various reasons why there are people who take more than one job. For one, I believe that they want to earn more money. Another reason why I think they do this is to grow more as a person and develop more skills. Lastly, I think there are those who get bored with having just one job so they want to break away from it from time to time.” 

Follow-up Question 2: 

For you, which is the most important factor when accepting a job offer: salary, work environment, or the brand or company’s name? 


“I would have to say work environment. I believe I can perform at my best if I am working at a place where I like the people I’m working with. I feel like everything else will fall into place if there is a harmonious relationship among employees.” 

Sample Response 2: 

“My father is the most workaholic individual I’d ever known. My paternal grandparents were both farm laborers, so my father had grown up performing physical labor. He worked in a Carmelite-run hospital in his hometown from his teenage years until his early twenties, and one of the Carmelite priests financed his high school and vocational schooling. He ultimately found work as a mechanic and driver in a nearby sugar factory, where my brothers and I grew up.

When my father isn’t working, he is either doing other tasks to supplement his money or tinkering with something. He doesn’t spend a lot of time doing nothing. He is a spatial thinker who could figure out how anything was built just by looking at it once. My father used to do carpentry when I was younger. In fact, he constructed our house with only one or two carpenters each time. He also does upholstery for others as well as for us. While he was working, he was hired by his sugar factory boss to reupholster all of the chairs in the trailer trucks that transport sugar cane and refined sugar. After work and even on weekends, he worked on the upholstery.

Even though he didn’t have to, my father worked. When my 60-year-old father received huge job orders from his former firm, he would begin sewing the tarpaulins at 8:30 AM. and work until 2:00 AM! My father’s former employer was distraught when he got sick a few months ago and needed to stop working because he couldn’t locate an upholsterer as good as my father. For his work ethic, my father’s ex-boss holds him in high regard.”

Follow-up Question 1: 

What do you consider the best way to unwind after a long day at work? 


“Well, I think that we all deal with exhaustion differently. Some would rather rest and sleep to replenish their energy, while some treat themselves. I am one of those who prefer to pamper myself after a tiring day at work. I do that by eating at my favorite restaurant.” 

Follow-up Question 2: 

How do you think employers should reward the hard work of their employees? 


“In my opinion, one of the best ways that employers can reward their hardworking employees is to give them incentives. These incentives can come in many forms. It could be cash incentives, paid trips, or gifts. There are lots of incentives they can give employees. I know that employees are paid to do their job, but as an employee myself, it’s a nice feeling when the people you work for recognize your efforts.” 

Vocabulary List for Answering the Question: “Describe a Workaholic Person You Know”

Below are some words from the sample responses for the cue card topic ‘Describe a workaholic person you know.’ with their definitions and example sentences to guide you. 

WordPart of SpeechDefinitionExample Usage of
the Word in a Sentence
applausenounPraise or approval expressed by clapping“The audience erupted in applause as she performed her acrobatics.”
burdenverbTo cause someone pain or anguish“Why do you burden yourself looking after your sister’s dog?”
chorenounA mundane task, especially one that is performed in the home“Doing the grocery shopping every day is such a chore!”
criticallyadverbTo a dangerous degree, with the possibility of death“He’s in intensive care because he’s critically ill.”
distraughtadjectiveDisturbed and agitated“They were distraught when they learned of his accident.”
enormousadjectiveMassive in size, volume, or scope“The master bedroom is enormous.”
financeverbTo give funds for“The majority of the money from the fund has financed the construction of federal prisons.”
impactverbTo have a strong influence on something or someone“Companies are beginning to experience the full impact of the economic downturn.”
juggleverbTo be successful at organizing your life so that you can devote time to two or more different pursuits or groups of individualsJuggling children and a profession can be difficult for many parents.”
psychologicallyadverbIn a way that influences the mind or has something to do with a person’s emotional state“Those hard days are behind him, and he is psychologically stronger as a result.”
spatialadjectivePertaining to the size, shape, and location of things“Routine work squandered his hand dexterity and fine spatial skills.”
supplementverbTo add a new element or a different amount to“Every Monday, the newspaper provides a sports supplement.”
tinkerverbTo fix or try to improve something in a hasty or ineffective manner, typically to no avail“Give my brother an old motorcycle to tinker with, and he’ll be content for the rest of the day.”
uncannyadjectiveWeird or enigmatic, especially in a disturbing way“The castle looked to be emitting an uncanny glow.”
workaholicadjectiveA person who works long and hard hours on a regular basis“He is a self-described workaholic and can’t recall the last time he took a vacation.”

Additional Reading — IELTS Speaking Cue Card Questions


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