What Not to Say on Your CV: A Lesson From BBC’s ‘The Apprentice’


BBC’s ‘The Apprentice’ seeks out candidates who are supposed to be the UK’s top, up-and-coming entrepreneurs. These young business-savvy professionals battle it out in weekly tasks for the ultimate prize of Lord Alan Sugar’s £250,000 investment.

You would expect job seekers across the country to be able to learn a thing or two from watching these enterprising minds as they face one of the most rigorous recruitment processes around. However, after 10 series The Apprentice’s audience finds themselves more often entertained by the stupidity of candidates as opposed to being inspired by their entrepreneurial minds and expertise.

Over 10 series, Lord Sugar’s candidates seem to have done a better job in unintentionally highlighting and teaching how not to conduct yourself in business. With awkward mistakes and childish arguments, huge egos and big mouths, many have faced the wrath of Lord Sugar and have been shown the door and given the dreaded catchphrase, “You’re Fired!”

One of the most common mistakes made by Lord Sugar’s candidates is to make bold, and quite ridiculous statements on their CVs. We all look forward to the final 5 interviews if not to see the candidates squirm under the pressure of big bosses, but to reveal the hilarious statements that they made on their CVs.

Here are some of the most memorable claims (for all the wrong reasons) made by candidates:

“The spoken word is my tool.” Raef Bjayou, Series 4

“As a salesperson, I would rate myself as probably the best in Europe.” Jennifer Maguire, Series 4

“When I wake up in the morning I can taste success in my spit.” James McQuillan, Series 5

“I bring ignorance to the table.” James McQuillan, Series 5

“I think outside the box, if I was an apple pie the apples inside me would be oranges.” Alex Epstein, Series 6

“I’m not a one-trick pony, I’m not a 10-trick pony, I’m a whole field of ponies – and they’re literally all running towards this job.” Stuart Baggs, Series 6

“My positive approach and very good looks make me stand out from the crowd.” Vincent Disneur, Series 7

“I’m like a really fine-tuned switch. If I need to turn it down then I turn it down. If I need to turn it up, then I turn it up.” Natascha Scribbins, Series 7

“I truly am the reflection of perfection.” Ricky Martin, Series 8

“I am not better at business because I’m good looking… but better at business because I’m better at business.” Sanjay Sood-Smith, Series 10

“I am a mix between Gandhi and the Wolf of Wall Street.” Scott McCulloch, Series 10

Do yourself a favour and avoid writing anything like this on your CV!

Are there any classic statements from BBC’s ‘The Apprentice’ that you remember? Feel free to leave a comment below and let us know your favourites.

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