Posts in: the apprentice

The Apprentice, Series 10 The Final: We came, we saw, we didn’t concur …

Their final task, now that the business plans are out of the bag, is – for change – hugely relevant: launch your own business. In the interests of realism, they have two days for the whole shebang, and the focal point is a promo video. Later in whatever week this is – and it’s not December, as no-one seems to be wearing their thermals – the Ballroom will fill with industry experts (in two batches, I hope – most of the skilled coders I know aren’t people you’d send down the shops for a pair of tights) and their collected wisdom will inform the final decision. But not before we all get to relive that moment at school when everyone got picked for basketball. Enter eight evictees from ‘the process’ – some of whom, I can’t help but notice, were rather early fallers. One rudely assumes some people couldn’t be talked into doing this all over again.

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The Apprentice Series 10 Week 11: Five, Four, Three, Two …

This isn’t about being an ‘apprentice’: it’s about being an investment-worthy trading partner in a start-up venture. Even if it were about recruitment, I always thought that started with dissecting the CVs? And, in this case, the business plan. I reckon we could have got shot of at least 15 of them in Week One. Filter out all those that trigger Lord S’s perceived bêtes noires - no sole traders, no bankers, no lawyers, nothing that reeks of Shoreditch or anything posh. Nuffink poncey, guv.

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The Apprentice Series 10, Episode 10: I’m just mad about saffron

This week’s task is about puddings. Puddings usually mean a) creamy, fatt,y sugary (no pun etc) delights, and – more importantly – b) the scintillating dinner party is all over bar the coffee and we can be home by midnight if we make a lame excuse about baby-sitters. (Does the world realise how the childless suffer needlessly on such occasions? “We need to go, I’m afraid. You know … the cat” just doesn’t cut it). In the spoilt world of The Apprentice, however, pudding means we still have at least two courses left. There's always cheese.

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The Apprentice Series 10 Episode 9: Money for old rope

The episode read mostly as a fit of pique at being outwitted. If the devil is in the detail, there is an entire production crew to check how watertight an item description is. Inventing rules on the fly might be a fair description of slightly too many work places, and authority is authority … but there are better ways of maintaining admiration and respect. Tonight, ‘poor show’ had at least two meanings.

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The Apprentice Series 10 Episode 8: Nine green wellies …

If the disembodied woman who places the call to the Apprentice House at 5.30am is as excited as the candidates to be announcing this episode’s kick-off, she hides it well while the surviving nine dash about like rather self-important kittens in their keenness to be transported to Chiswick House with their overnight bags. In the admittedly rather splendid surroundings of ‘a slice of the country in the heart of the city’ (#newsflash – London has a heart and it’s in the Borough of Hounslow!), Lord Sugar informs them that the rural market – which seems a rather woolly concept to me – is worth £200bn pa. British rather than American billions, one assumes. Either way, that’s a lot of Range Rover Discoveries.

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The Apprentice, Series 10 Episode 6: Playing the Game …

Lord Sugar’s intro voiceover continues to announce his roles as “Judge , jury and executioner”. Given that 11 contestants are still breathing, it feels like he’s been slacking. Pamela is practising her already advanced sarcasm skills, and Nick H and Karren are still wearing their oddly dated sunglasses. I half expect a few tunes from The Blues Brothers, but instead we get the shortest task briefing I can recall. Apart from the possibly dubious claim that HMS Belfast inspired the game Battleships, this consists of ‘you’re going to design, prototype and sell board games’. Bish bosh, job done, innit.

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The Apprentice Series 10 Episode 5: You’re Either on the Bus …

Was this episode entertaining? It depends what floats your boat, of course, but I think I cringed more at this than at any previous episode: I sincerely hope the BBC refunded the 45 tourists they were happy to film and broadcast having pretty dire days out. You can’t give someone 24 hours back, but surely they can stretch to £65? The candidates are fair game – they mostly earn any mockery that they attract – but in the wider world, where profit margins on foolish stunts are less important than dignity, the punters deserve more respect.

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The Apprentice Series 10 Episode 4: Vlogging a Dead Horse

Today, they’re off to the East End to see something over 150 years old that’s looking a little shabby. No, you heartless beasts - the building: Wilton’s Music Hall. In his Entrepreneur of the Opera capacity, Lord S appears on stage, waving a smartphone and explaining why he’s standing in what appears to be a festering heap: because eyeballs on YouTube channels sell advertising. Old toot for moolah, innit. People half his age do their best to look suddenly enlightened.

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The Apprentice Series 10 Episode 3: Can Chinese custard cut the mustard?

In the same way that burger-flippers become Nutritional Delivery Executives, it transpires that scented candles are now known as Designer Home Fragrance Products. And, would you Adam and Eve it, these things are “all abaht high margins”. Well, I never. Some wax, a bit of pong and three inches of thin rope for £40, you say? Bargain, innit.

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