A. Listen to an interview with a Skyscanner employee. What is her position in the company? How positive is she about the company and her job on a scale of 1-5 (5 = very positive)? What makes you thinks so?
PR Public Relations
B. Listen again and answer the questions.
1 How long has she been at Skyscanner?
2 Why did she apply for a job there?
3 Where did she go the day after the interview?
4 What three benefits does she mention about working for Skyscanner?
5 Which benefit does she value most highly and why?
6 What challenge does she say that the company faces?
She is the PR Manager for the Danish, Swedish, and Turkish markets.
How she feels about the company: 5
How she feels about her job: 5
1 exactly one year
2 She wanted to work somewhere that focused on travel.
3 She went to South America.
4 flexible working; free fruit; being able to work from your home country
5 She values the flexible working policy most highly because it gives her freedom and is based on trust.
6 They have offices in different parts of the world and they need to work together across time zones.
I = Interviewer, PR = PR Manager
I Well, today I’m very pleased to be visiting the Edinburgh offices of Skyscanner, a company which did extremely well in this year’s Sunday Times Best Companies to Work For awards, coming sixth overall and winning outright in the categories for most exciting future and best personal growth. So today we’re speaking to a PR Manager at Skyscanner. Could you start by telling us a bit about what you do?
PR So I am the PR Manager for the Danish, Swedish, and Turkish markets, I look after the, our PR agencies there and what that really means is that I work with them to get Skyscanner messages and stories into the media, so that could be anything from a big report on trends, on the future of travel, to smaller stories about where the Turkish people are going on summer holidays.
I And how long have you worked at Skyscanner?
PR I have just celebrated my year anniversary.
I Oh, well, congratulations!
PR Lots has changed in a year, but all good changes.
I And what was it that attracted you to apply for a job here?
PR I had always want, wanted to work somewhere that was kind of travel-focused. My previous job was in a very dry environment, so much so that I decided I would go traveling and then the day before I flew to South America for a few months, I had an interview here and found out when I was in the Bolivian Salt Flats that I got the job, so really nice, yeah.
I Skyscanner did very well in this year’s Sunday Times survey of Best Companies to Work For. Do you agree that it’s a good place to work?
PR Yeah, absolutely it’s, it’s a very funny thing, actually, because it very quickly becomes the norm for someone who works here, all these amazing benefits we have, so when you talk to someone else, you know, in another company, you suddenly think, “Wow, we’re so lucky,” so, you know, anything from flexible working to the small things like free fruit, to people being able to work from their home country, they are all massive benefits that you quite quickly get used to, but I think everyone really does appreciate it.
I So I guess it would be difficult to go anywhere else after this?
PR Yes, very much, maybe that’s the plan, maybe that’s the ploy that they’ve gone with!
I Is there one thing that you’d identify for you as a particularly significant benefit?
PR I have to admit what I really love is the flexible working policy, it’s a quite casual thing, there is no formal procedure, but it, it very much places the trust with the, the employees, so, you know, if I want to leave early on a Friday, there is kind of this, relaxed understanding, “Do you know what? You’ll make up the time when you can, you’re in charge, you’re the, you’re the one who knows your workload and your own role,” which is really nice, it’s quite refreshing because it’s quite unusual, especially within quite a large corporate—you know, organization—and so I particularly like that.
I Is there anything that you might change about, about the company or about its, the way it treats its employees?
PR I think, so we’re growing at quite a, kind of rapid pace and I think because we have six different offices—you know, Beijing, Miami—I think as we grow it will probably be something that we need to tackle in terms of how we all work together across different time zones, so I think at some point that will be something that becomes more of an issue, it’s not at the moment, but I’m pretty confident that Skyscanner will be able to tackle that, and tackle that in good time.
I Wonderful. OK, well, thank you very much indeed. Thanks for your time.
PR Thank you.
A. Listen to a man talking about a kind of job he would love to do and one he would hate. What are the jobs?
B. Listen again. Answer the questions.
1 Why does the man think he would be good at the first job?
2 What does he think might be the downside?
3 Why does he think he would hate the second job?
4 Has he done this kind of work? If so, did he like it?
The man would love to be a travel writer and would hate a job on a production line.
1 The man thinks he would be good at the first job because he thinks he is quite sociable, is a good writer, he doesn’t mind living out of a suitcase, he can live cheap.
2 A downside might be that you would have to write a book, even if you had nothing to say.
3 He thinks he would hate the second job because he wouldn’t have to think and it would be very repetitive.
4 He did a job of this kind when he was 18, but he didn’t like it.
Well, one job I’ve always dreamed about is being a travel writer, I mean, basically because I like traveling and I like going around the world and I’d like to have an excuse to do it and someone to pay me to do it if possible, um, and I think I would be pretty good at it because, well, I’m pretty sociable and I like to think I can write and uh, I’m good at living out of a suitcase and living cheap, um and it seems to be a wonderful way of seeing the world. I mean, I don’t actually know anybody who does it, but I’ve always kind of envied people like the late Anthony Bourdain who had a television show that took him all around the world and he seemed to have such a wonderful time.
But I have occasionally had to read travel books and some of them are amazing and some you definitely get the impression that they’ve been sent there by their publisher to do a travel book about Patagonia or whatever it is and nothing much has happened, but they still have to write the book. So, you get kind of a boring book sometimes, and I guess that might be a drawback that you’d feel you had to write a book even if you’d nothing to say.
Well, what I’d really hate to do is any kind of job on a production line, any kind of real drudge work where there’s really no, kind of, mental input at all, but you’re just repeating the same task again and again and again and I think that would probably drive me insane.
I have done something kind of like it. When I was about 18, I worked in a plastics factory to earn some money for a couple of months and I remember I went in, in the dark and I came out in the dark, because it was winter, so I never saw the light of day, it was about a ten-hour day, paid almost nothing, we had half an hour for lunch and the noise of the machines was so loud that you could, you could shout at the top of your lungs and the person next to you couldn’t hear you, and the smell of plastics filled the air and it was absolutely disgusting. The only, the only advantage was that it was so loud that you could actually sing at the top of your lungs and nobody could hear, so I spent a lot of my day singing to myself, which, which I really enjoyed.
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