Last night's task was one I've been looking forward to. Every year, The Apprentice runs a task which is centred around beauty and grooming and this is a topic that's very close to my heart.
Beauty treatments are really big business and it seems that you can't go into a shopping centre these days without being confronted by an army of eager masseurs or an aquarium of fish with a peculiar fetish for feet.
Being a task so close to her skill set, all eyes were going to be on Susan for this one. With her background, she should have been a fantastic asset for her team. However, although Susan started well, she ended up making life very difficult for herself. Susan overestimates her sales abilities and this means that she can make poor decisions.
At the beginning I think her background really helped. The most profitable treatment by far was the spray tan. Her enthusiasm and clear knowledge of the sector was key to Zoe's team winning this particular product. This ultimately played a large part in the team's success. Unfortunately, this wasn't the only part she played. The worst thing for me was her attitude towards the customers. She completely failed to relate to her audience.
At Bulldog we've done our fair share of trade shows over the past four years, which are not dissimilar to this task. I've always really enjoyed the experience. You get to meet a whole range of different people and it's very important to adapt your pitch to suit the person you're speaking with. If one of my team made some of the snotty comments Susan made then I'd have had to ask them to go home. Every interaction must be made with respect.
The losing team didn't have much luck. Felicity lacked any clear structure when organising her team on the day. In what was essentially a sales task, it was all about pushing the highest margin products. She should have made this crystal clear to her team from the second they had their first team meeting.
I thought Thomas made some brilliant suggestions before they began selling and was very clued up on the figures. It looked like he was going to boss this task. In the end though he ended up getting sucked into the chaos of the disorganised sales team, which was a real shame. Being largely ignored by Felicity also didn't help him. The candidates don't seem to rate Thomas for some reason but I really think he's got a lot to offer.
The boardroom was again a bit of a farce and the result was all too obvious. It was Felicity's indecisiveness in arranging her team that cost her the task and it was her indecisiveness in the boardroom that cost her again.
She was a bit unfortunate as I can't actually think of anything that Natasha has done in this series to warrant still being in the competition. Lord Sugar didn't fire her this time, but I can't imagine she's being groomed for success.
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