I haven’t usually been one to watch this programme and follow it religiously as many people do; but last week I had the great pleasure of watching the new series of ‘The Apprentice’ and I didn’t expect it to be quite as entertaining as it was. There, standing before me on my very own TV screen, were 16 eligible candidates all suited and booted in their pinstripe suits and shiny black heels. May I add – it is a mixture of males and females before you start picturing a business man with Jimmy Choo’s poking out from under his trousers!
The candidates are all called into the Board Room, where they get their first encounter with the Lord himself Sir Alan Sugar – a self-made multi-millionaire businessman. I’m not quite sure I’d like to be one of the hopeful’s sitting there before Sir Alan and his fiery assistants – rather them than me! It’s here that the teams are split and the first task is assigned – manufacturing and selling a range of sausages!
Now, I don’t know about you but to me this seemed quite a challenging task for a bunch of entrepreneurs who have only just met each other. All 16 of them were sent out to work throughout the night buying sausage meat, deciding on flavours, choosing quantities, picking the quality of the sausage, packaging them, deciding on their selling methods, calculating profits – amongst many more. A very precise and tiresome task I’d say, but I guess that’s what being Sir Alan Sugar’s apprentice is all about. You must ‘stress to impress!’
Aside from the serious stuff, there were some seriously amusing moments to the show that you just can’t help but laugh out loud at. The fire that is spewed from the contestants’ mouths just to impress Lord Sugar is something you just wouldn’t do on a daily basis to someone you had never met. Mimicking and imitating, shouting and swearing, arguing and interrupting, even crying in some cases – you know who you are! But it is pure brilliance – it’s what grips you to your seat and makes you want to watch more. The infamous ‘You’re Fired’ finger is always an entertaining moment as well. And in this case, it was Dan Harris that was on the receiving end of that finger, for his truly terrible project management. I’m not sure, and neither was Lord Sugar, that shouting at his fellow team mates and delegating jobs and sitting back and watching, was the right way to go about things! Come on mate – you need to get a grip and take a reality pill.
After watching the show last week, it got me thinking about the importance of working in a team. It’s really essential to delegate the duties of a big project between a team, to break it down into stages so that it is manageable. It can be very daunting trying to tackle everything at once, and it simply won’t work. Not only does it take the pressure off one person doing the task, it also creates some good organisational and management skills and improves team work.
Here at Pretty Clever, we facilitate many teambuilding tasks designed to improve these sorts of skills and help a team work better together. We have our very own version of ‘The Apprentice’ where you will get to compete in tasks including marketing, designing, trading and leadership. You will also be allocated an observer whose job it is to make comprehensive notes and then feedback on their team’s performance with respect to how individuals (and the team as a whole) behaved under pressure. At the end of the boardroom session the big boss himself reveals the success of one team, and the failure of the other team.
So, do you think you’ve got what it takes? Do you enjoy working to deadlines? Are you a good team leader? If so, contact us today on 01273 771500, and find out if you are the one to be “hired” or will you be the unfortunate one who gets “fired”!
You’ll hear more from me after the next episode…