RUGBY School pupil Harry Maxwell was praised by Lord Sugar, despite being fired from his BBC show this week.
Harry, 16, lost out during a showdown in the boardroom see in Monday’s nights episode of the Young Apprentice with Lord Sugar after his team once again lost the weekly task.
Harry, who is a student at Rugby School and lives in nearby Brixworth, was one of four contestants to be sent home - narrowly missing out on the final.
Business tycoon Lord Sugar said: “Well guys, in life someone wins and someone loses, but it’s not all bad news. Harry M, in all the years I’ve been working in this boardroom, I’ve never met someone as unlucky as you because you did not deserve to not have a win under your belt.”
Below is the full interview with Harry after he was fired on Monday.
1. How did you find your time on the show?
I really enjoyed Young Apprentice, I learnt a lot about business and believe it or not have taken away some very strong friendships. We are all still talking constantly whether it be on twitter or text and I think I definitely have some friends for life.
2. Who do you think is the strongest candidate?
Zara and James are both strong in different ways. The prize is a £25,000 business fund so I would tip James for the win solely because, whilst Zara has performed very well, she didn’t have one idea throughout the process. That said, I would be happy to work alongside either of them in my latest business venture, Luxury Five Star Hotel Guide.
3. Tell us what happened in the task you were fired on
There was a twist meaning all the losing team were fired. I was unlucky once again so faced Lord Sugar’s finger of fate, however, I am going away from this process knowing that in terms of individual performance, I got as far as I could have possibly gone which was my intention. It is slightly annoying not to be in the final for things that weren’t necessarily my fault (branding), but that’s life and I was delighted by the number of supportive tweets I got following the episode.
4. What were your highlights of the experience?
I loved the buzz of making big sales – from selling the terrifying Heliconia for £150 to “Bird House Big Brother” for £400. There’s a real sense of achievement seeing a plan come together having grafted tirelessly all day. It was also pretty epic seeing Harry M trending worldwide on Twitter four times, one of which was the #1 trend!
5. How do you think this experience will help you in the future?
I think the business benefits are quite clear cut. I could now phone or email Lord Sugar to troubleshoot future business plans and ultimately have met 11 new potential business partners! The press surrounding my business, Luxury Five Star Hotel Guide.com, has been phenomenal and whatever happens, I’ve taken away thousands of new followers on Twitter who all have great banter!
6. What are your hopes for your future career?
I am really focusing on my hotel venture. It’s called Luxury Five Star Hotel Guide.com and we are the only directory listing all of the UK’s 5* hotels, offering descriptions and reviews (which are really fun to do). If people book I get to take a commission of that. However, whilst this is all very exciting, I am really having to keep myself grounded and focus on my A-Levels, I have applied to Oxford, UCL and LSE to study Economics and Geography and I am desperate to get into any one of them!
7. What would you to say to any fellow young aspiring business people? Any advice?
I would say be persistent and driven. You’re never too young to make money, don’t just sit around saying “I like business”, get out there and do something! Lots of my mini-ventures have been online based, cost no more than £20 to start, and made a lot more than that! Also if you ever need any advice, feel free to tweet me.
8. What have you learnt about business from your experience on Young Apprentice?
Young Apprentice was definitely a learning curve. I went in not knowing everything but with the view to win. This did lead to my team-work skills coming under fire from other candidates who didn’t like my individual sales focus, however, there is no way I would be so brash in a real business environment and we did all get on really well back at the house! Sales was a foreign concept to me pre-show and now I am feeling much more confident in that area. However, the best lesson was probably how when branding you need to be very targeted and have your concept streamline across every single aspect. It also showed me that to be a successful entrepreneur you have to be a driver and to do that well you have to have ability across a wide range of areas; from ideation to sales and pitching. What has also been interesting though is the power of marketing. Having my profile raised through the show has meant my businesses, largely through twitter, have massively grown and to see that continue means marketing is something you need to get bang on.
THE FINAL: Monday 12TH December, 9pm on BBC One