Love or loathe the contestants on The Apprentice, there’s no denying that the show is a great source of lessons for recruiters! We look at our top 10 reasons to switch on:

The candidates focus on their presentation:

Whether the candidates are excellent or, frankly, terrible – they all have one thing in common; they look the part. Each candidate presents him or herself accordingly for the corporate world, sometimes with a twist to demonstrate individuality and personality, but always with respect for the business world that they are operating in. This is a vital lesson. If you want to be respected within the recruitment field and trusted by clients, you need to look the part. 

The best candidates keep it simple:

The best ideas on the show tend to be the most simple and invariably focus heavily on the ancient arts of selling! Alan Sugar is himself a salesman at heart and he greatly respects those who go for the difficult jobs of face to face selling and communication. If you can become a confident salesperson, you will naturally succeed in recruitment. 

Honesty pays! 

Lord Sugar hates a liar and he can spot them a mile off. There is a difference between slightly embellishing your credentials and blatantly lying – and you need to know it. Trust will immediately be lost if you are found to be economical with the truth. Hold good values and always stick to them.

Being nice is not a sign of weakness:

Some of the apprentices think that they need to be mean and hardened to succeed. However, niceness often pays off. Business is just a facet of everyday life, and people like to be treated thoughtfully, respectfully and courteously. Think about the people you like to spend time with and work hard on cultivating those qualities. Remember too that other people tend to help those who are nice and supportive of them. The nasty people tend to end up alienated!

Confidence is a great asset… in moderation:

Some of the apprentices are vastly over-confident and the viewers squirm when they are vastly over-selling themselves or lost in their own egos. Forget ego – be confident about your abilities but always back up your claims with facts and examples. Let your work speak for itself as far as possible.

Listening is a great art:

As your Grandma said, ‘you have two ears and one mouth’. Some of the biggest gaffes on the apprentice come down to egotistical apprentices being too enamoured with the sound of their own voices to listen. Inevitably, a lack of listening leads to mistakes. Vow to become an excellent listener.

Value your team:

A great team is your source of support, expertise, help, camaraderie and complementary skills. Value your team players, and contribute wholeheartedly yourself.

Respect authority:

Sugar/Trump is the boss and he wants to be treated as such! Remember this when speaking to your own agency directors! 

Know your market:

Great recruiters know their market inside out. Like the best apprentices, they genuinely know what they are talking about and their knowledge builds trust and confidence.

Be flexible:

This goes without saying. The best apprentices – and recruiters – put in the hours when duty calls, and enjoy their leisure time when it’s there!

Author: Satnam Brar is Managing Director of Maximus IT. Maximus is an Oracle Gold Partner which specialises in recruitment in the ERP, CRM & Database sectors, specifically ORACLE, MS Dynamics, and SAP.

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