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Part 2

Describe a rule that you don’t like

You should say :

What it is

Why you don’t like it

How others feel about the rule

And explain whether you’ve followed the rule

I would like to talk about a recent government rule that has been creating much inconvenience in people’s everyday life here. So as you might know, there’s been an Omicron surge here in China, and the government has ramped up its virus control. Like there’s this app that everybody has to download on their smart phone and this app basically records your health status and your covid tests and tracks the places you have been to. And it gives you a QR code which you use as a pass to enter your workplace, shopping malls, train stations, airports etc.

So they use big data or algorithms to determine whether you are low risk or high risk, like a red code says you are in big trouble, a green one means you are off the hook and you can travel relatively freely. But every now and then, even with green codes, people get these popup windows on this app, it doesn’t mean you are infected but popups basically mean you can’t travel anymore, and you are even not allowed to buy train tickets or plane tickets.

So a couple of weeks ago, me and my wife were at an airport, ready to board a plane back home in Beijing. When we were asked to show our codes, we got one of these dreaded popups and we were told we couldn’t get on the plane. Long story short, we had to go to this little town in Yunnan because it didn’t have any covid to like wait it out, like for the popup window to disappear. We stayed there for like 14 days until we could travel again. It was a lot of unexpected travel expenses, and we didn’t like it one bit. I’m sure a lot of people share the same experience. And because of these travel restrictions, people’s economic activities just can’t take place, the money loss is unbearable.

Then again, we kinda all understand that like, drastic times call for drastic measures. like, we need everybody to follow this rule so that we can win this battle against covid. I just wish we could see a silver lining soon and our life could go back to normal.


surge 激增(n/v)

ramp up 加强

pass 通行证

algorithm 算法

off the hook 没有麻烦了

popup window 弹窗

dreaded 令人讨厌的

long story short 长话短说

drastic times call for drastic measures 非常时期需要非常手段

a silver lining 一线希望/状况好转

Part 3

1.What do you think of the relationship between companies and customers?

Well, companies strive to provide products and services to satisfy customers’ needs

and when customers experience difficulty using a product or service, companies are supposed to fix whatever problem there is. And it’s the customers that decide if a company makes good products or not.

At the same time, customers may be so satisfied with a company’s products that they develop loyalty to this company or brand, identify with the company’s culture and values. Thus, they are very likely to recommend the brand to their friends, so the company gets more customers.

Basically, I think the relationship is mutually beneficial.

2.As a customer, what kinds of services would you expect to receive from a company?

I expect to be provided with detailed information on a product before I buy it so I can decide if it really helps my life and I get my money’s worth. I’d also expect its salespeople to be nice and friendly and patient, I don’t demand them be at my beck and call but I want most of my needs to be fulfilled. And I’m more likely buy an item from a company’s online shop when shipping is included.

And if I’m not satisfied with my purchase, I’d want hassle-free return service from the company, no questions asked. There’s nothing I hate more than being kept waiting for a company’s system to take a few days to process the return before they can refund me.”

3.What kinds of jobs involve coping with the public?

Definitely people who work in PR. Their job essentially is to maintain the positive image of a business / a person in the public eye. They have to be smart and intelligent and good with people, and also good at handling crisis.

And if you are a government spokesperson, your job involves a great deal of public speaking, your job is basically done in front of an audience. You represent your country, your people. And you have to be really careful with your word choice, a lot of what you say is scrutinized and can be distorted and misunderstood, it’s a tough job.

4.Why should companies react quickly when customers have difficulties?

When customers have difficulties, they feel frustrated, it creates inconvenience in their life and work, companies should send people to solve the problems quickly. If customers are kept waiting or their calls for help don’t get through. It will lead consumers to lodge complaints against the company, and people often go on social media to vent their anger, it can cause great damage to the company’s reputation, sometimes customers join each other to boycott a company’s products, which can cause the sales of the company to plummet.


strive to do sth 奋力做到某事

identify with 认同

at sb’s beck and call 对某人言听计从

in the public eye 再公众面前

scrutinize 仔细检查

get through(电话)打通

lodge a complaint against 投诉某人

vent sb anger 发泄愤怒

boycott 抵制

plummet 暴跌









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