The Apprentice. Pure show biz or pitch theatre?

Last night 8 million, or so, viewers tuned in to the final show, pretty compelling stuff.  It is easy to dimiss the programme, and many critics do, as pure show biz with 16 contestants and SIR Alan all showing off, acting out their aggro, trying to win business ASBOS.

This critcism misses the point.  What makes it compelling is the very real spirit of gladitorial  competition, they all really want to win.  We enjoy seeing who loses and how they take it, car crash  television.

SIR Alan, like Simon Cowell in his Talent show, plays the Caligula  who last night gave thumbs down to Alex the looker, Claire the loud and Helene the sane . Thumbs up went to Lee ,the ‘ liar’. I would have hired Claire.

What lessons can we take into real, as opposed to reality,  pitches?  The main one, as so often, is the   critical need to  understand the decision taker, here SIR Alan.  What turns him on , what is he getting out of this( and it’s not the opportunity to recruit an employee), what makes him look good?  After all, he is the star. 

It would seem, and this is tricky to assess given all the direction and  editing , that there is reward for listening to the great man and then being seen to have modified, to some extent anyway, behaviour. In any pitch listening to gain insight is key to success! 

1 thought on “The Apprentice. Pure show biz or pitch theatre?

  1. samcopyright

    Hey Mike

    Sam here!

    Love the blog.

    On a TGV on the way to a gig in La Baule France ! The joys of mobile 3G.

    Great read….this is my favourite TV program by a mile. So many interesting things come up each week.

    In a way for the contestants its a 16 week pitch. Gruelling. If you havent got the measure of what Sugar is looking for by the end, then with regret ‘youre fired !’.

    I thought in the end the presentation by the winning team was pretty lame….they focused on all the wrong attributes, and I agree I think Claires confidence was enough to shade it !

    Hope you are well. Lets catch up soon.

    Best

    Sam

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