Image: BBC
Image: BBC

If the first few episodes of this series of The Apprentice have taught us anything, it’s to not make any mistakes, especially ones that could make your team lose by a huge margin (£1.87 profit, anyone?!).

Nick and his famous facial expressions are gone, but with the prominent feature of Claude Littner watching over your every move for the first time in Apprentice history, it’s certainly ‘the toughest year yet’.

Four weeks in and the tasks are relatively simple; creating shampoo brands, selling products at a pet show and buying items at competitive prices, but that doesn’t stop the candidates from making some impressionable mistakes.

1. Don’t miss the lunchtime rush when selling food for lunch

In episode one, Connexus missed the whole point of the task. On a task all about hitting the lunch time trade, they tried to sell food to people… after their lunch break. Let’s not forget trying to sell a salad for £9! Dan chasing people down the street asking if they wanted a salad was bad enough. But the lack of fishcakes, oh wait, 211 less than they needed made the task for April’s team an abysmal disaster – regardless of how “top of the market” April thought her salad was.

2. Do take free manure from a nearby field

Saving money is a big part of these tasks, so the obvious thing to do when driving by a farm is to ask if you can leap over their fence and take it off their hands (literally). Episode three demonstrated buying specific items for competitive prices, so both teams hit the jackpot when they paraded in with their expensive shoes and suits and spent the afternoon digging up manure with a fork, don’t ever say The Apprentice isn’t classy.

3. If you can’t speak any French, don’t go to France

Joseph was leading the guys’ team and intelligently decided that he should go to France, with only one member of the team actually speaking any French, let alone with Claude watching in the background, who by coincidence just happens to be fluent in French. Another addition to that, don’t try and buy Leavers Lace (The lace of Calais) in the UK.

4. Don’t go back to the same shop more than four times and not buy anything

In the same episode, the sub team led by Elle, continuously made a visit to Sarah in her shop by the coast asking her about an anchor and a boat, at least they bought the anchor fairly quickly at a good price of £12.50. However the boat deal took more than one trip to finalise, actually it took four.

How many times can a shopkeeper tell you she won’t go any lower on the price? It doesn’t help when you’ve just said ‘no’ for the third time and your project manager tells you to buy it anyway. Poor Sarah, at least she got the sale in the end.

5. And finally, not so much a tip but more of a statement: Dogs live better than humans

Episode four sent the teams to sell products at the London Pet Show, Versatile picked luxury dog sofas – showing the audience that some dogs have more expensive furniture than some of the general public. £610 for a dog bed?

Moral of the story is, if your owner is willing to spend over £500 on a bed when most dogs prefer sleeping on a rug or on your bed, you are living luxuriously.

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