Business and Leadership Lessons From The Apprentice Week 9

Week 9 of The Apprentice UK last night and the teams were tasked with producing, packaging and marketing a new biscuit to 3 of the largest UK supermarkets.

Zoe took the project manager on one team and Helen on the other.  Both had relevant experience so that seemed like a wise choice.

It was a tough task with the teams working to short timescales.

In the end Helen once again led her team to victory due to a massive order  and Zoe was fired.

Both teams in my view gave a credible performance but ultimately with hindsight made some basic mistakes.

Firstly Zoe knew the business and should have got involved in the production.  Intuitively she knew this but allowed the others to sway her view.  Sometimes you need to trust your intuition.

Secondly you need to play it safe when pitching to buyers.  I get what Zoe’s team were trying to do with the little role play.  However they were pitching a product not pitching an advert.

Make sure that there is clear communication and understanding among everyone in the team.   The boardroom when you are reviewing what went wrong is not when you should be finding out that there was a different level of understanding about the product quality between production and marketing.

Don’t take feedback negatively.  There was a resounding message from the focus group that Melody’s idea of the biscuit being the new popcorn did not hit the mark.  Rather than getting upset by this take it on the chin in the way Tom did when his emergency biscuit went down like a lead balloon.

Be clear about who your market is.  The winning team had absolute clarity on who their target market was while Zoe’s team never decided on this.

Duncan Brodie of Goals and Achievements helps highly effective professionals become highly effective leaders and managers.  To sign up for his free audio e-course click here

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

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