This time our band of intrepid smartly dressed Apprentices had to go and clean something. They were given the choice as to what they cleaned. To help them each team had a van stuffed full of cleaning stuff. Each item they took from the van cost them. And they could buy materials up to a value of £200.
The boys team ignore their teachers well-prepared team name suggestions and go with Empire. And quickly choose a project manager (Howard Ebison). Howard tells everyone the sort of manager he is – why bother Howard they’ll find out soon enough on the task – just get on with it!
The girls come up with team name Ignite, then take a long time deciding who they want to take the fall as project manager. In the end they choose Mona Lewis who I can predict is not going to last long!
Empire Is A Wash Up
Phillip Taylor rings round and finds a taxi firm that shows interest in his car valeting service. He and some of the boys jump up and go off to negotiate a deal with them, and get a little annoyed with their project manager who attempts to set some boundaries for the work they do and the profit they need.
Before leaving Howard suggests that he and the remaining boys shouldn’t clean cars too. Why? Surely that’s likely to be the highest earning cleaning job?
Anyway, the remainder decide at the drop of a hat that they’re going to do shoe shining! Doing a shine doesn’t take too much time. However, you don’t get much for it either! Bad decision – they should have just chosen another company to target for car cleaning.
Before the car washers leave Howard also makes the sensible suggestion that maybe they shouldn’t do car interiors as it takes a long time – too true!
Empire Stretches Credibility
Phillip’s team of car washers demonstrate that they don’t know how to do a job properly by submitting their first car (at 1:30!) for inspection. The company’s rep finds yellow fluff on the seat, water on a window, roof not cleaned and an inside sill still dirty.
Attention to detail is vital for a good car wash – these lads were more interested in doing it as rapidly as possible. It makes you wonder whether they’re ever cleaned their own cars?
Shoe Shine Boys Get The Cash
Howard and the rest of the boys team shine shoes and make about £60/70 in an hour. Hmm, I suspect it was more than an hour!
When Howard discovers that the other team are washing cars very slowly he downs tools and speeds off to give them a hand.
Eventually the boys complete the mini cabs and get paid. However, Howard was right to point out that they shouldn’t have been cleaning inside and out.
Ignite Burns Slowly, Too Slowly
The girls hurriedly run around getting lots of cleaning stuff. One of them suggests that they shouldn’t be trying to spend up to the budget of £200. Later in the car she again suggests that they’ve spent too much and another says they’ve got to make a lot of money to get back the amount they’ve spent on cleaning products.
Anita Shah congratulates the girls for spending nearly up to the £200!
No one in this team has managed to get the rest of them to see that the objective of the exercise is to make a profit. The less you pay for cleaning materials the more profit you get!
The Hummer Washers
Eventually the team splits into two and Mona’s sub team arrives at a limo company at 11:30 (an hour and a half after trading was allowed to start). They suggest that they’ll clean 3 hummer limos for £300! Are they completely crazy? The director they talk to gently suggests that they’re too expensive and says their current supplier only asks £20 per car.
Mona suggests that the price is impossible. Has she never heard of the minimum wage. It’s easy to pay someone for an hours work to clean a car and still make a profit on £20! She even suggests that the director is wrong – has she never heard of that famous phrase “the customer is always right?” Plus he seemed quite sincere in what he was saying to the team.
Classic Car Wash Capers
Meanwhile the other car wash team headed by Debra Barr sign a deal to wash and valet 4 classic cars for £80 (ie £20 per car) with the opportunity to do another 10 in the showroom at £10 each if the company likes the result. And of course the team manage to take so long, and make a hash of the job that they are told they wont be able to do the other 10 cars.
And Debra’s team discover they didn’t bring one of the pressure washer bits they needed, so after more wasted time they ended up using a hose! So they’ve lost money on the pressure washer and they took 4 hours to complete just 4 cars.
Mona suggests the team go to a supermarket and do car washes there. And Anita comes up with the idea of doing car washes in 4 minutes – what world does she inhabit?
The girls decide that they would have been better of at supermarket all day, as they would have “cleaned up!”
The Girls Boardroom Shambles
The girls took £357 and spent £196.45 so their profit was £165.55 and the boys spent £107.39 and got £347 giving them a profit of £239.61. Which meant the boys won.
The boys made £10 less than the girls but had been more aware of their costs so they made more profit.
Project manager Mona immediately asks Debra and the other team what went wrong – so carefully shifting the blame away from herself. And yet the issue was that they’d spent too much money – which is what the project manager should have been checking.
When asked who’d produced a business plan Mona talked a lot about nothing and didn’t answer the question. Then she pointed the costs issue straight at Anita.
And to make sure she then said that Debra had to check her costs for her team. So neatly pointing the finger at someone else.
Meanwhile Anita displayed that she had a complete lack of business sense by saying she was only there to add up how much they were spending.
And when Debra was pulled up about what she’d said about her team she had the brass-face to deny that she’d said it and to say that she was extremely pleased with the efforts of her team members! Unfortunately for Debra TV is very good at picking that sort of difference.
Mona really goes for Debra all guns blazing. And yet Nick points out the important thing that Debra’s team failed in was not getting the other 10 cars. Because if they had they would have won.
Anita then digs herself into a big hole for no reason. She should have agreed with Nick about the other 10 cars and I think Debra would have been in peril of a firing. And by the time Nick raised the point again it was too late.
Mona, kept avoiding the questions that Sir Alan asked her and spouted out more hot air. Or as Sir Alan saw it, she showed some spirit.
In the end the firing finger swung and pointed at Anita.
Was The Apprentice Firing Fair?
Sir Alan was right to fire Anita because she’d not raised the question of the costs that were rising. She’d not appreciated that business is all about delivering a service for the least cost to make a reasonable profit.
Then she went on about how it wasn’t her best performance! No how true!
Debra was quite lucky to survive because she managed to lose £100 by not getting the remaining cars.
Who’s The Favourite To Win At The Moment?
My favourite from last time is Rocky Andrews and he was not very obvious in this episode so maybe the editing was done to hide his light! Certainly at the moment it would be easier to say who shouldn’t be the Apprentice.