Apprenticeship jobs for the apprentices

As an avid watcher of the Apprentice on BBC1, I often think how I would have fared with some of the apprenticeship jobs that they’ve had to do over the series. Tonight sees the budding apprentices travelling to France where, no doubt, we’ll see which of them are educated in the classic sense of the word (and can pass a sentence or two in French) and which of them opt for the speaking slower, louder and in English tactic of communicating.

Looking back at previous tasks however, it’s clear that some of the ideas on offer from the apprentices are truly shocking. The mobile app task springs immediately to mind, where both teams decided upon an App that simply makes annoying, and not particularly amusing, noises. One app was simply awful, while the other app was awful and mildly offensive – while also alienating the ‘worldwide’ audience by focusing on UK regional accents.

I did notice that one of the other apprentices mentioned the idea of a bubble wrap popper app, which was quickly dismissed in favour of the badly executed regional accents app. This, of course, was a much better idea and would have been far more successful – certainly would have won them the task.

It was, though, the general lack of ideas that I found surprising on this task, and on others. Mobile apps is such a big industry that ideas should have been flowing, although of course they would have been limited with the short, overnight, development time (which is very limiting it has to be said).

The dog food challenge where the budding apprentices attempted to brand a dog food ‘Every Dog’, which could then be broadened out to ‘Every Cat’, ‘Every Horse’ and ‘Every Elephant’ was a monumentally bad idea. Even when the focus group, which contained a vet, said that it wouldn’t work they still went for it.

If only they’d just targeted puppies, as dogs tend to have three stages of dog food during their lives (puppy, adult and senior) they’ve have won the task – as their branding and their advert was very good. It was just the basic idea that was flawed.

I look forward to seeing what they come up with tonight, and who embarrasses themselves with their lack of education or willingness to even attempt the French language.

Darren Jamieson, aka MrDaz, is the Technical Director and co-founder of Engage Web and has been working online in a career spanning two decades. His first website was built in 1998 and is still live today.

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