Charles Burns, a 24-year-old Management Consultant from Manchester, made it all the way to week eight in the most reason series of The Apprentice. He showcased determination, passion, and drive throughout his journey, and we were lucky enough to grab him for a quick chat about his time on the show…
Q 1 : Hi Charles, let’s start from the beginning, what made you decide to apply for The Apprentice 2017?
I applied for the programme as I have a truly revolutionary business plan within the luxury watch sector and who better to mentor me than Lord Sugar himself.
Q 2: What was the selection process like leading up to the show?
The selection process is gruelling to say the least, you are tested in many different disciplines and I am honest with you, everybody that comes through that process and makes it onto the show has something of interest to Lord Sugar and his team. The view that people are chosen solely based on their entertainment value is nonsense.
Q 3: What was it like meeting Lord Sugar for the first time?
Honestly it was like being in Madame Tussauds, I entered the boardroom and the first time we meet Claude, Karren and Lord Sugar is on camera. Very surreal!
Q 4: Were you able to stay in touch with friends and family whilst you were on the show?
There is extremely limited opportunities to keep in touch with friends and family. Only a handful of them even have clearance to know that I am on the show, the rest believed I had a management consultancy contract in the USA.
Q 5: What was it like living with all the other candidates whilst you weren’t on a task?
Great fun, the truth is, we are all from different backgrounds but share a common goal and tremendous ambition. We all bonded over different things, occasionally tempers and issue can spill over from the day!
Q 6: Any awkward moments you can share with us that were not aired?
Nothing I can recall, I was solely focused on the £250,000.
Q 7: What was your favourite task?
I loved the “treasure hunt” task where we had to find items for Lord Sugar’s 70th Birthday, that for me is an iconic Apprentice task and one that I always loved watching on TV. To say I actually took part in one, is special and will live we me forever.
Q 8: Looking back, would you have done anything any different?
The only thing I would do differently would be to take a bigger role in each task, unfortunately the minute you let others pitch or sell ahead of you, whilst in the real world you should let others have a chance, you create a rod for your own back in the boardroom.
Q 9: Will you apply again for the show?
1) You can’t 2) I have learnt an awful lot and will take the lessons forward into my business life.
Q 10: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
A highly successful entrepreneur known for total disruption of the luxury watch market globally.