Sunday, March 13

Qualities of a Good Boss - Sample Essay

Read the following independent essay prompt.

What are the qualities of a good boss? Use examples and reasons to develop and support your argument.

This is another common independent essay practice prompt. Everybody who has taken TOEFL has practiced writing an essay using this prompt. Does this prompt ever appear on the official TOEFL iBT? I doubt it very much. If it did, everybody would score 5. But it is good practice, nonetheless. How long should an independent essay be? There is no official rule, but 300 words is a good length. This essay is exactly 300 words.

Okay TOEFL fans, here is your assignment.

Question #1:

In this essay, how many rhetorical strategies do I use? Click here for the rhetorical strategy checklist.

Question #2

Does this essay have a thesis? Click here for the thesis checklist.

Question #3:

You are a TOEFL writing rater. How would you rate (score) this essay from 0-5? Why?

What are the qualities of a good boss? Personally, I believe a good boss should be understanding.

For example, when I started working at McDonalds, I didn't understand how to make French fries. That was my first job. Nobody trained me so I thought, "How hard can it be?" I turned the fryer on and pretty soon I was making fries, no problem. But then customers started to complain. There was no salt on the fries. I'd forgotten the salt! I thought I was dead, but my boss Betty said, "Chill, Fred. It's your first day. Everybody makes mistakes. Just add salt next time, okay?" As you can see, Betty was really understanding. That's why she was a such good boss. She never freaked out.

Okay, so after I made French fries for a year, Betty promoted me to Big Macs. Pretty soon I was the best Big Mac maker in Mackinaw. Then one day Betty said, "Fred, this is Bob. Train him to make Big Macs, okay?" So I did. It was all going great when the customers started to complain. There was no special sauce on the Big Macs. Bob had forgotten the special sauce! Did I yell at Bob? No. As his boss, I knew it was his first day. I just told him to remember the special sauce next time. That is what an understanding boss does. He or she helps others correct their mistakes so they can do a better job. As president of Fred's Fine Shoes, I remember that lesson to this day.

All in all, a good boss is understanding. Understanding means a boss realizes that employees make mistakes. Hey, we're all just human, right? Remember that when you are the president of your own company or training someone to make Big Macs.

© Bruce Stirling 2011