Describe an occasion when you forgot something important.
You should say:
- what you forgot
- how important it was
- why you possibly forgot it
and explain what you did when you remembered it.
[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you’re going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]
Model Answer 1:
I am not usually a forgetful person, even on my worst day, since I try to keep everything in my possession as organised as possible. But, then again, I am also a human, and as such, I do tend to forget about important things on a rare occasion just like I forgot to carry my train ticket the other day.
Well, forgetting a train ticket wasn’t exactly supposed to be a big deal if I had bought it on the internet. But, unfortunately, like the other times, I couldn’t buy it from online as, according to the railway ticket authority, the computer server of the train ticket issuing authority was not working properly, which meant that I actually needed to travel quite a distance to buy that ticket from the rail station.
And, that’s probably the reason that I forgot to pick up the ticket from my home before heading to the rail station. Let me explain why I thing like that. Actually, since I always buy the ticket online, I don’t really have to have a hard copy of the ticket in my hand as the ticket authority always sends me a text message on my phone and to my email address. So, when I go to the station, all I do to pick up my hard copy is to just show that message or tell my phone number to the ticket issuing clerk. In other words, there is no issue here of taking my ticket to my home, only to forget to pick it up later on. By the way, that ticket was really important as I needed to travel to my corporate head office in another town in order to attend a really important training session.
So, anyway, as soon as I remembered that I forgot to pick up the ticket, I immediately took a taxi back to my home, since luckily, I still had some time in my hand, to pick up my ticket. In the meanwhile, I also called my corporate head office and explained the situation so that they could make some other arrangement for my training.
Sample Answer 2:
I have recently graduated from college and my major was finance. Though I have already left my college, my memories related to my academic years are still vivid. On one occasion, I forgot to submit an important assignment and for this cue card topic, I would like to talk about this event.
I was in my 8th semester at that time and in a coursework, we were supposed to submit an assignment which alone carried 40% marks of this course. The pass mark for each coursework was 50% and due to this, the assignment was so crucial for every student.
The teacher who took this course was a guest teacher from another college. As I recall, his name was Stuart and he was around 40 years old. In the last month of our course, he assigned individual assignments to every student and gave us a deadline for the submission. He warned us not to copy-and-paste any part of the assignment and he had a reputation for dealing with the plagiarism very strictly. He also told us that the only reason someone might fail in this course is due to the plagiarism in his assignment. I worked on the assignment and completed almost 80% to 85% of it until I got a severe fever. I had to see a doctor and take medicine to recover from this viral fever. The medical report showed that it was a viral fever and there was nothing to worry about. After a week I joined the class but unfortunately, I completely forgot my deadline for the assignment and the due date was already over! I possibly forgot it due to my sickness and distractions caused by it. Sometimes the fever was so severe that I had to take several pills together.
Soon after I realised that I have missed my deadline, I tried to contact professor Stuart but I heard that he would not be available until the next week. It was quite a frustrating experience for me. I then concentrated on finishing my assignment and waited for the professor to get back to our college. Next week, I met him and explained everything. To my surprise, he did not seem convinced. I told him that I can show him my medical as well as the test reports, but he looked like he did not care. He got busy on his cell phone and I was literally broke! After he finished his phone conversation, he suddenly asked me the name and address of the doctor whom I saw during my illness. He, in fact, did contact this doctor and saw him personally, which I learned at a later time. He wanted to be sure that I was not making an excuse for the delay to submit my assignment and was genuinely ill. To my relief, two days later he called me into his room and gave me an email address. He asked me to send my assignment to this email address within 12 hours. I would like to mention before ending my story that I got ‘A’ on this assignment.
Sample Answer 3:
Forgetting things is usual with me. Often I forget to do or carry things that are important to me. Consequently, I have to waste times over the issues. Recently, I forgot to bring my laptop which contained the important files required for the meeting.
In fact, it was my mistake. I was in a rush on the day. On the previous night, I went for attending a marriage ceremony and made late to come back home. So, I had to sleep late. As a result, I could not track the alarm. When I woke up, it was almost 8.45am while my office was to begin at 9.00am. So, I rushed towards the office and made the late. I forgot about the laptop. All the necessary files and presentations that I made a day before yesterday was on the laptop while I was supposed to present them during the meeting which was set with some of the high officials.
Just after entering the office compound, I realised that I did not bring the laptop. It was the most important component of the meeting. The managing director of the office had a private meet with me a couple of weeks before. He instructed a draft and asked me to make a details plan that will include the sales targets, strategies, analysis of competitors’ performance, allocation of responsibilities and more other issues. Without the laptop, it was impossible to present the data and analysis to high officials at the meeting. Moreover, I did not have the ideas on my mind right then. So, without the laptop, I was unable to run the meeting and I had to go back home to bring it.
Generally, when there is something important at the office of the meeting, event, field trip etc., I try to make a reminder about the issue on my cell phone. Besides, I take a note and keep that in the daily appointment book – provided by the office. But I was unable to make anything of them due to participation at the marriage ceremony of my college buddy. I complete the tasks after the office hours or before leaving the office. But, I could not create any reminder for the meeting as some of my friends came to my office to grab me and go together to the ceremony. Amid their chaos, I was unable to create any new reminder or check the former ones. Moreover, I was late to return home and everything got disorganised. As a direct result, I made the mistake.
It was hard to ask my boss to move into my home again to get the laptop. So, without mentioning anything to anyone, I left for home to bring the laptop. In the middle of my way, I received a phone call from my immediate boss asking about my location and why I was late. I replied with a false excuse that I was stuck in a huge traffic jam. In fact, he is well aware of the traffic congestions in Delhi. Luckily, I reached home within a short time and brought back the laptop. The meeting started in the afternoon as the participants were unable to join in the morning for some sudden change in their schedule. So, I was relieved, made some other changes to the plans and presented the revised copy to the meeting. My plans were accepted with some minor modifications.
More Ideas to talk about this Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card topic:
Topic: Describe an occasion when you forgot something important.
1. In the last board meeting of my office, I forgot to bring the presentation from my desk. The presentation was extremely important because it contained the strategical planning for the next six months. I actually forgot amid thousands of business. I also was assigned to take care of the logistics and other necessary matters. After remembering, I rushed to my station. It took around five minutes for me to come back with the pen drive that contained the presentation.
2. Driving on the streets of New York is hard if someone does not have the driving license. In fact, if police can trace that the driver does not have the license, the penalties are harsher. Last Wednesday, while driving to the office, I forgot to take the license with me. In fact, I was in a rush because I made late to wake up that morning. But it was not possible for me to return home to get the license. Luckily, I reached the office and returned home safely at the end of the day without any legal trouble.
3. I forgot to take my mobile phone with me when I started college in Tokyo. It was highly important for me to carry the mobile phone with me because it was the only mode of my communication with others. I cannot exactly remember why I forgot that but it might have been a headache that made me forgot to carry the phone. Later, I made a phone to my mom and asked her to switch the phone off.
4. Last weekend, I forgot to get the bus ticket for me that I bought the previous day to make a trip. It was important because, without the ticket, I would not be able to ride the bus and make the trip happen. I thought that I have taken the ticket with me and I did not crosscheck the matter. Later, I went back to home when I found no ticket with me. Luckily, I did not miss the bus as it was a bit late.
5. I went to my office without feeding my fishes at the small aquarium. It was highly important because the fishes will remain starved for a long time. I had to prepare some presentations and some other complicated calculations for the office. So, I might have forgotten about feeding fish. When I remembered that I did not feed the fishes, I rushed back to my home – located in the eastern corner of the Paris city- and fed them. By the time, I informed the office about my late appearance.
Some ideas to talk about this Candidate Task Card:
1. You forgot your driving licence while driving somewhere.
2. You forgot to bring a train/ air ticket at the railway station/ airport.
3. You forgot to bring money/ credit card while dining at a restaurant.
4. You forgot to call your superior/ manager in the office.
5. You forgot to bring your child home from his/her school.
6. You forgot about a class test.
7. You forgot your luggage.
8. You forgot about a friend who was waiting for you.
9. You forgot someone’s birthday.
10. You forgot to turn off something before you left home.
11. You forgot to return a book that you borrowed from a library.
12. You forgot to attend a meeting.
13. You forgot to email someone.
14. You forgot a project deadline.
15. You forgot to apply for a job.
16. You forgot to lock your house/ car.
17. You forgot to pay your utility bill in due time.
18. You forgot to visit a sick relative who was in a hospital.
19. You forgot to bring your admit card for an exam.
20. You forgot to send someone an important SMS/ text.