Jobs vocabulary and speaking

Cutting Edge Pre-Intermediate Module 3

Ask your teacher if you have about the homework, e.g. “Is this answer also possible? 

What is your job? What is your daily routine? Is your routine a normal one for someone with that job?

What about your friends and family? Describe their jobs and routines and see if your partner thinks that is typical.

Choose another job and describe how you imagine their routine until your partner guesses what the job is.

Useful language

In Japan/ the developed world/ most of the world, he or she…

Do overtime

Give presentations

Have meetings

Look after…


Speak other languages

Spend (a lot of) time on the phone/ on a computer/ in meetings/ travelling

Work (very) hard


Use (special) equipment/ tools/ a computer

Wear a helmet/ a uniform/ a jacket/ a tie/ goggles/ protective clothing/ gloves

Work at weekends

Work full time/ part time/ long hours

Work in an office/ a factory/ a warehouse/ shop/ store

Work in the (early) morning/ (late) at night/ flexitime/ in shifts

Work on his or her feet

Work outside/ inside/ at a desk

Work with his or her hands

Work with people/ Meet people




Almost always


Very often




Hardly ever

Almost never


Do the same with jobs on the next page.

Accountant Actor

Architect Artist, e.g. painter or sculptor

Athlete (= Sportsman) Au pair/ Nanny/ Babysitter

Baker Bank clerk

Barber/ Hairdresser/ Stylist Barman/ Barmaid/ Bar tender

Broker/ Trader Bus driver

Businessman/ Entrepreneur Cameraman

Care worker Carpenter

Cleaner Cook/ Chef

Designer Door to door salesman

Estate agent (= Real estate agent) Executive (= Director = Top manager)

Factory worker Farmer

Fire fighter (= fireman) Fisherman

Flight attendant/ Cabin crew (= Air stewardess/ Air hostess)

GP (= General practitioner = Local doctor)

Help desk staff/ Call centre staff Homemaker (= Housewife/ Househusband)

Journalist Judge

Lawyer Lecturer/ Professor

Librarian Local politician, e.g. town councillor or mayor

Lorry driver (= Truck driver) Masseur/ Masseuse

Member of the royal family Middle manager

Monk/ Nun/ Priest Musician

National politician, e.g. MP or senator Newsreader

Novelist Nurse

Office worker/ Clerk Photographer

Plumber Police officer

Postal worker (= Postman = Mailman) Prime Minister/ President

PI (= Private investigator = Private detective)

Private tutor Psychiatrist/ Psychologist

Public servant (= Civil servant, e.g. taxman, diplomat or ambassador)

Receptionist Sales executive (= Salesman)

Secretary/ PA (= personal assistant) Security guard

Server (= Waiter/ Waitress) Shop assistant/ Cashier

Social worker Soldier

Spy/ Secret agent Surgeon

Tailor Taxi driver

Mechanic/ Repairman/ Service engineer/ Technician

Telesales staff Television presenter/ Television celebrity

Tour guide Traffic warden

Translator/ Interpreter Travel agent

Vet (= Veterinarian)

Which jobs from above would you recommend? Which kinds of people for? Which would you not recommend? Why?

Listen to details about four people (T3.5) and make notes so that you can recommend jobs for them.

What are the differences between the following words and expressions?

• Accountant and accounts clerk

• Announcer and television presenter

• Au pair, babysitter and nanny

• Bank clerk, bank employee and banker

• Businessman and office worker

• Chef and cook

• Engineer and technician

• Executive and sales executive

• Lecturer and professor

• Manager and executive/ top manager/ director

• PA and secretary

What is wrong with the following expressions?

• Guardman

• Casher

• Office lady

You can’t really translate these Japanese words into English. How could you explain them?

• bucho

• kacho

• kakaricho

• mama-san

• tarento

Choose a category from below and find at least five words from above that you both think that is true for, putting them in order if you can.

• Becoming more/ less important

• Companies should/ shouldn’t be allowed to outsource this job overseas

• Don’t usually do their job properly

• Foreigners should/ shouldn’t be allowed to get a visa to do this job in Japan

• Gets money from the government and shouldn’t

• High/ Low standards in Japan

• Paid too little/ too much

• Should be fewer/ more

• Should be more open to women

• Should be supported or encouraged by the government

• Should get money or more money from the government

• Shouldn’t be allowed

• Standard of service getting better/ worse

• Unfairly popular/ Unfairly get good publicity

• Unfairly unpopular/ Unfairly get bad publicity

• We could/ couldn’t live without

• Will become less common/ will disappear/ will become more common

• Would/ Wouldn’t want my children to become


PDF version for easy printing: Jobs vocabulary speaking

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