FCE examination, B2 level – Listening section – Part 2.
– Good morning, and today we are continuing with our series on careers for young people. In the studio today we have Sylvia Short, who works for a company that produces guidebooks for serious travellers. Now, Sylvia, I believe you left Essex University with a degree in German and Spanish. Tell us something about how you got your job.
– My main interest has always been travel. I spent every holiday when I was a student travelling abroad. After I left university I spent a year as an English teacher in Spain, followed by six months as a tour guide in Italy. When I returned to England I applied for loads of jobs advertised in the newspaper, but didn’t have any success. So I decided to make a list of every company I wanted to work for and write to them directly, rather than wait for them to advertise.
– Good advice to anyone, I think.
– Yes, and I was very lucky as the company World Travel needed an assistant in their office in London. I dealt mainly with the post at first, just to get used to their way of doing things. Obviously, I was qualified to do more, but I wasn’t in a hurry. Then the manager’s assistant announced she was leaving after only being with the company for twelve months, and I applied for her job. The company encourages their staff to apply for higher-level jobs, and I was promoted four months after joining.
– Good for you! What does the job involve?
– Well, I’ve expanded the role since I took it on. I’m in charge of all the advertising in the press whenever we publish a new guidebook and I sometimes give talks to people in the travel industry.
– Do you find the work interesting?
– Oh, yes, it’s never boring. We often get odd requests from journalists. They assume we know everything there is to know about travel so they often ring us to see if we can help them. One rang to say he was writing an article and wanted to know whether there were any female football teams in China.
– Really? And what other things do you find yourself doing?
– Oh, a large part of my job is to make sure my boss is where she should be. She does a lot of TV interviews on all aspects of travel and she also presents a radio programme about adventure holidays every Friday night. In between, she writes articles and now and again comes into the office to find out what’s going on there. My job is to keep her fully informed.
– What do you think you’ve learnt from working for her?
– Oh, she’s an excellent writer and she’s helped me, especially when I have to do press releases – she suggests changes, but she’s very encouraging, not bossy. She even suggested I did part of a chapter in a new guidebook to Great Britain on my home town, which I enjoyed a lot.
– So, how do you see your career developing?
– Well, I don’t think I’m good enough to be a full-time writer. But my boss has a lot of contacts in the TV world, and I fancy becoming a TV presenter. However, at the moment I’m enjoying my job far too much to give it up.
– Do you get to go abroad as part of your job?
– Not as often as you’d think! I do spend a lot of time doing things like answering the phone, but I did manage to go to the company’s head office in Australia last year for a conference. That was terrific.
– Sounds to me like you’ve got the perfect job, Sylvia! Next…
9. German (and) Spanish
10. (tour) guide
11. World Travel
12. 4 months
15. adventure holidays
16. home town