The Apprentice Week 12 – The Final

The Apprentice Week 12 – The Final.

Its the traditional interviews for the final of the Apprentice, but with a twist – this time the candidates also have to     present their business plans. Helen starts with the best record in the series, followed by Susan, Jim and Tom.

The four interviewers heaped pressure on the candidates, and the excerpts shown showed each of them floundering at times; Jim’s cliches (using AMS in the title of his plan); Tom’s numbers (did not cost manuafacture of chairs); Helen’s idea (Home assistant); Susan’s flannel (economics degree, but employed people without paying tax and to make £1M profit in year 1). At one point it was difficult to see anyone winning!

Of course, the aim of the process is to put the candidates under pressure. Gradually we were allowed to see each candidate having some (small) success.  So who came out on top? It was hard to judge the business plans, but Helen’s seemed weakest. Interviewer feedback highlighted a lack of entrepreneurial flair in Helen. Jim was described as “slippery” and his market research was lacking. Claude liked his idea, though. Tom was seen as unlikely to see things through as he lacks focus. Susan has business skills but is naive and made too  many assumptions. She is an entrepreneur though, according to Margaret.

Sugar got the candidates into the boardroom and took each of them apart. He started with Susan and her assumptions; this is something that has been shown clearly throughout the series; Susan is naive. Sugar was disappointed with Helen’s idea, and her lack of experience in the area of  home “concierge”.  For Tom, Sugar was unsure about the idea, not seeing “back pain” as a major issue., but part of a bigger issue; staff absence. The plan is flawed. Jim was described as selling the Sugar brand and he was unsure where the profits would come from.

In the end Tom was criticised for not focsuing on the chair. Jim showed a lack of business acumen and was the first to go. No real surprise there. Next up, Helen’s idea was highlighted as poor, and Sugar expressed his disappointment. Susan’s costs were suspect, but she tried to defend herself and she was next to go.

Helen or Tom? Sugar wanted Helen for her performance, but Tom had better, if flawed ideas. Could they make a team? Helen made a late pitch for a chain of bakery stores, her core area. Tom highlighted his creativity to get to see a major buyer. Sugar was impressed and Tom carried the day but the current idea needs tweaking. Tom was hired!

So, as predicted for the last few weeks Tom got it. Helen would have made a employee, but lacked the flair of the entrepreneur. The right person won.

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3 Responses to The Apprentice Week 12 – The Final

  1. Tim says:

    All in all, four poor ideas. I agree that it was difficult to see any of them winning at one point. But Tom was rightly hired because at least he demonstrated that he is capable of coming up with genuinely new ideas that can be commercialised, even if the one he did pitch was, in truth, a bit rubbish.

    It made no difference to the final result, but Helen’s attempt to change tracks at the last minute was poorly thought through and somewhat under-hand. “Hey, I know I just got eviscerated in my interviews, but actually I didn’t want this job – I wanted THAT one. Can I have it, please?”

    I take no pride in having picked out Tom as the winner from week one … hell, who am I kidding? *Smug mode*

    Bring on the Junior Apprentice, I say.

    http://slouchingtowardsthatcham.com/2011/07/18/the-apprentice-and-the-winner-is/

    • markdecosemo says:

      Well done Tim. You called it right and deserve to be smug!

      I have to say that I agree about Helen. Once it emerged she is still employed by Greggs I wonder what they think about the idea of her opening as a rival! It did cross my mind that Sugar could pair up Tom and Helen.

      In the end, Sugar has made his money exploiting and improving on existing ideas. He has got this with Tom’s nail file. Interesting that he has been looking to get into beauty treatments and a possible future partnership with Susan.

      Al in all a good series, even if some of the candidates were poor.

      Thanks for the dialogue. Let’s carry on with Junior Apprentice.

  2. Pingback: Why Young Apprentice Needs To Be Fired « markdecosemo

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