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Thursday, April 13, 2006

The UK Apprentice - Slippery Sayed Slips Out Of The Firing Line

Sir Alan Sugar fired another of his Apprentice's yesterday.

As always we ask, "Did the right one get fired".

The losing team deserved to be in the board room facing the "firing squad".

The teams were each given the task of selecting and selling two items created by designers.

The one who sold the most by the deadline won.

In my opinion Sayed's team picked one of the worst items - a petrol can. Really nothing different about it. Bad decision. But not just that it had a very low sales value.

So they really had to chase sales hard to get the can sold.

In addition they chose an organiser. Again nothing different, and as one prospect said, it's a piece of bent metal.

Ruth's team made a better choice of items, going for a futuristic coat stand and some concrete-encased lights.

Sayed chased a big order of petrol cans, which he got, but was beaten by the deadline to get the order book to Sir Alan's guardian angels. So he forfeited part of the value of the order.

I think Sayed was quite close to being fired last night. He kept trying to ingratiate himself with Sir Alan. I love The Times' name for Sayed: Slippery!

What did Sayed do that was wrong, or just plain annoying?

He was told to lay-off going for big accounts because they take ages to order, so he went after them anyway

  • He just doesn't support his team, at all, Tuan his side-kick for sales actually raised the sales order value when Sayed was desperately trying to close early. Then Sayed took the credit for getting the bumped up sale!

  • He repeats what Sir Alan said about Tuan being a "planner" because Sir Alan said he didn't need one of those

  • He tells Tuan that he (Slippery) is great on sales over the phone with such as Microsoft. It sounds as though he's closing deals every minute of the day

  • When he misses the order book delivery deadline he complains about a "major accident" - if I'd been Sir Alan I'd have checked with his driver

  • Sir Alan asks Tuan who should go from Slippery and Sharon, Tuan says Slippery, Sharon isn't allowed to choose and of course Slippery says Sharon because he thinks Sir Alan wants either him or Sharon to go. Obviously he could have made the case for Tuan going, which would have been better strategically

  • In selling situations Sayed keeps going on and on about being from the East end and how he's a self-made man and practically begs for sales

What about Sharon, did she deserve to go?

Really the answer to that is not to look at what she did, she successfully sold stuff and obviously is quite capable of doing so. No the answer is that she is not a great team player, she seems to sulk when her point of view is not taken into account and she also doesn't seem to have the obvious drive some of the others do. Her parting shot to Sayed was funny. She called him an arrogant something or other and he seemed to not hear what she'd said. Certainly vintage Slippery.

Should Tuan Have Gone?

Tuan definitely stays in the background but he has his moments. He bumped Sayed's order up to 300 petrol cans when Sayed would have settled for a lower figure. Sir Alan accused him of being a planner, not something they're looking for. But Tuan managed to stand his ground, despite Slippery putting the knife in and confirming that he was indeed a "planner". I don't think he'll win now as he also appears to lack the drive that some of the others have.

At the moment my money is on Ansell.

For more comment on Apprentice check out the Times' Apprentice Blog and the BBC's Saira column. The Times also has an interesting comment about the the difference between journalism and PR - which I agree with. And a little more about Tuan and the vote they had last week about who should win. It sounds like there may have been some vote rigging. Who says electronic voting is the way to go!

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1 comment:

Neovo said...

I really thought Sayid was going to get fired because of his punctuality and rudeness in the board room. My father who manages his own company said Sharon and turned out to be right. Money talks.

I do think Tuan better fix up by next weeks episode because his getting the same compliments Samuel was getting.

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