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Chloe's The Apprentice blog - Let Minnow what you think (S16 E4)

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Chloes The Apprentice blog - Let Minnow what you think (S16 E4)

This week the teams were sent to Greenwich to visit the National Maritime Museum. They’re picturing luxury yachts, but Lord Sugar’s plan is to send them to Cornwall for a spot of fishing.

The task

The task involves making the most profit from catching, buying and selling fish. Half of each team head off to Cornwall to source the fish, the other half stay in London to make the sales. 

Alex begrudgingly takes the PM role in team Infinity – no matter how many times he used the word ‘happy’, he really didn’t look it. Harpreet on the other hand doesn’t hold back from pushing herself for the PM role for team Diverse and quickly bullies leads the team through their fish choices. 

They need to select a ‘catch of the day’ as well as another fish for both selling and making into a recipe for the sub team to sell at a farmers market. Team Infinity opt for crab and monkfish – fancy. Diverse stick to pollock and dover sole.

The sub-teams

Francesca immediately puts herself forward for Diverse sub-team leader as her dad used to take her out on his boat. And, to be fair, she proved her worth - catching a bucket of fish while the boys were still trying to wipe the clueless expressions off their faces.

Meanwhile, in London, Harpreet sells ‘top quality’ dover sole for £25 per kilo to a chef. He’s very particular about the quality, and how it needs to be prepared. 

Alex and his team sell some monkfish to a chef: they’re so pleased with themselves, that is until Catherine gently points out that they forget to mention their catch of the day. And their sub team caught SO. much. crab. Awks.

The friction

The most annoying part of the show (there were a few) has got to be Harpreet’s finger clicking at her team. So rude! Brittany was too polite to say anything, but you could see it rubbed her up the wrong way, unsurprisingly.

Tensions also grew in the Infinity sub team, with Stephanie and Sophie bickering over customers, and later in the boardroom, Akshay and Alex had a little tête-à-tête: “Can you hold your mouth?” “Can you hold your mouth?”. Children, please.

In reality, tensions between colleagues can become so fractious that they start to damage the wider team and business. It can be one of the trickiest things for an employer to manage, especially when there is no real misconduct on any one’s part. If informal steps don’t get you very far, it will almost always be worth engaging a professional mediator to help navigate, and hopefully mend, damaged working relationships.

The mistakes 

Harpreet failed to deliver team Diverse’s ‘top quality’ dover sole and Chef was not happy with their prep of the fish. Funnily enough, hiding the rubbish fish at the bottom of the box didn’t fool him. He’s not willing to pay the top dollar originally agreed so they’re forced to slash their prices. 

Problems are also afoot with team Infinity who not only forgot to sell the crab, but Alex didn’t think to arrange a time with the chef to deliver the monkfish. In the end he delivers it too late for lunch service so he’s hacked down on price a little – saved only by the quality of their fish prep.

In the meantime however, their choice of crab arancini wasn’t the biggest hit and his sub team had to slash their arancini prices from £7.99 for 5, to £5.

The boardroom

Boardroom squirm time comes around and it’s little surprise that team Infinity made less profit than Diverse, whose fish tacos were a hit at the farmer’s market. Francesca ran her sub team like a military operation, and it paid off for them.

Lord Sugar describes team Infinity’s performance as the worst failure he’s ever seen in the boardroom – they made a profit, but their series of mistakes were an embarrassment. Akshay finds himself in the losing team again, and it’s his third time being brought back to the boardroom. 

Lord Sugar must see something in Akshay though, because it was Alex who got the boot after his epic failure as PM.

Best quotes

My favourite quotes from this week:

Alex: “lots of people like rocket with this sort of dish”. Where exactly did you conduct that consumer research Alex?

Akshay: “look at this fish, it’s literally caught from the sea”. Just, wow.

Aaron: “Francesca’s sometimes a bit like a dictator from North Korea, but at the same time she managed to get the job done, so, I can’t really complain”. There’s a backhanded compliment if ever I saw one.

Tune in next week to see what hilarity results from the teams designing computer games.