Career Management

I’ve gone through how not to get fired, which is a step in the right direction, but how about getting hired? Only one lucky contestant can land Alan Sugar as their business partner and win the final prize of a £250,000 investment in their business venture and he’s not prepared to dish it out to just anyone.

The winner of the competition will have to prove themselves as the strongest individual in the running; so here are a few qualities that they must demonstrate in order to come out on top:

1) Highly competent in business

The whole purpose of the show is for Alan Sugar to find a budding entrepreneur who demonstrates promise and is worth investing a large sum of money in. He’s not going to take a gamble on just anyone, so the successful individual is going to have to prove themselves as competent in business. As one of the final stages of the competition, contestants are asked to pitch a thorough business plan to Lord Sugar, which has the potential to make or break their chances; so it is essential that they have an educated understanding of how they intend on meeting their business goals.

2) A good professional manner

A bad attitude is one of the biggest turn offs for Lord Sugar and many a contestant have been sent packing over the previous series’ because they failed to act professionally in tasks, as well as in the board room. A large part of business, is the ability to create and maintain contacts and if you behave in an unprofessional manner you’re likely to cut ties with important connections. Whether it be in the workplace, a job interview, or at a networking event, it is incredibly important to conduct yourself appropriately.

3) A profitable business idea

Whatever the business idea may be, the most important factor is whether it has the potential to create a profit. There’s no point starting a business, if at the end of the day you are going to find yourself at a loss. Before pitching your business plan, it is essential that the required market research has been conducted and the costs and profit potential have been assessed thoroughly.

4) A strong USP

For the business to be a success it must have a unique selling point (USP) or there won’t be anything that will differentiate it from competitors. This could be an entirely new product or service, or alternatively taking an existing one and improving it or adding new features to it, that makes it unique to what other companies are providing. Lord Sugar started his own business at the age of just 21, so he knows a thing or two about business and won’t invest in something he doesn’t have faith in becoming a success.

5) Confidence

Not to be mistaken with arrogance which a lot of the Apprentice contestants possess! In order to succeed, the contestant must have confidence in themselves, their abilities and their business plan. If they do not have faith in them self, it is unlikely that Alan Sugar will place trust in them as a business partner. An outgoing personality isn’t entirely essential for business success, however it certainly helps when it comes to direct selling and presenting sales pitches with fortitude!


About Sophie Deering

You can follow Sophie at @SophieDeering.

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