Young Apprentice 2012 interview: Max Grodecki discusses exit

Max Grodecki - Young Apprentice 2012

Max Grodecki became the first candidate fired from the Young Apprentice 2012 last night, and here he chats about his short time on the show.

The 16-year-old was given the axe by Lord Sugar after the boys failed to beat the girls in the first task.

How did you find your time on the show?
An interesting experience, certainly not like anything I’ve done before. Whilst at times it was a bit stressful, it provided a fascinating insight into the world of television and media.

Who do you think is the strongest candidate?
It is very hard to say. The Young Apprentice requires you to be a bit of a jack of all trades. So, it’s quite hard to tell who will best fit that role in the early stages. Beyond the series, I think all the candidates’ strong personalities and varied talents will bring them success in their chosen fields.

Tell us what happened in the task you were fired on...
We had to sell vintage clothes and rags at a variety of outlets. I was placed in the sub-team doing market research, laundry and selling clothes at a car boot fair. I took the quite risky strategy of organising and sorting the stock, so that the other two could meanwhile sell efficiently. I thought it was clever as the foot-fall was too limited for three sellers and we had loads of stock that we had not seen before. It seemed to work as we sold more as a team than our girl counterparts; however it wasn’t appreciated in the boardroom!

What were your highlights of the experience?
I really enjoy strategising, creating and branding, and selling high value, specialist items – none of which played much part in this task. I suppose the closest I got to that was during the initial deciding of a team name and task planning. Meeting Lord Sugar, Nick and Karren was obviously a fantastic experience!

What was your worst moment on the show?
Unsurprisingly getting fired was not much fun. Everything seemed to be going very quickly at the time, and I wasn't really expecting it, so it came as a bit of a shock!

How do you think this experience will help you in the future?
It was a very stretching experience that has turned me into a tougher and more ambitious person.

What are your hopes for your future career?
I hope to go into business and then politics.

What would you to say to any fellow young aspiring business people? Any advice?
In my personal experience, of selling art, clothes and collectables, my greatest help has always been knowledge. To borrow from Bacon, in business knowledge is most definitely power. If you know more about your product than the people you are selling to, and certainly more than those who you buy from, then you are in a very good position. The easiest way to build up such knowledge is to start a business in an area you already have a passion for. In terms of the show, being the first to leave, working on tenacity is an obvious thing for me to recommend. Things often don’t work out, but if you keep on driving, whatever the odds and setbacks, then you will eventually do well.

What have you learnt about business from your experience on YA?
I have some experience of trading in the higher end of the clothes market, but in most respects this task was pretty far removed from the normal ways in which I would aim to make money. So, I mainly learnt general soft skills in dealing with stressful, time-pressured conditions. Having always worked on my own in the past, suddenly being in a group of such strong characters was a bit of a learning curve!

The brand new series of [cat c="apprentice"]Young Apprentice 2012[/cat] continues next Thursday, November 8 at 8PM on BBC One.

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