The Apprentice: Harry is first to be fired
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The Boys’ Team were up against the Girls’ Team during Thursday’s instalment of The Apprentice on BBC One. They had to create an electric toothbrush for children aged between six and eight and produce an app that taught youngsters how to clean their gnashers. Ultimately, it was Conor Gilsenan who was fired for being responsible for the failure of the task, and he’s spoken exclusively to Express.co.uk about “going out with a bang”.
The sales executive and former professional rugby player was the sub-team leader of the Boys’ Team and he decided to call the animated character on the app for their toothbrush ‘Wiffy the Wizard’.
The toothbrush, which was supposed to be brown to look like a wizard’s wand, was likened by experts to a “turd” and Conor was blasted for not thinking about all of the connotations linked to the name of the product.
Following the task, Conor was brought back into the boardroom by the episode’s project manager Aaron Willis and fellow teammate Nick Showering.
The 28-year-old was unable to save himself and Lord Aland Sugar made him the second fired contestant of the series.
Reflecting his time on the BBC One business show, Conor explained: “It’s not as easy as it looks. In reality, if you are going to put a product on the market, it’s going to take a minimum of six months but we only had one day.
“And I actually thought the app was quite good if I am being honest, but maybe it was a little bit too slow.”
The app the Boys’ Team created showed an animated wizard, named Wiffy, cleaning each of his teeth individually and it was criticised by a focus group for being “boring”.
Defending choosing the name Wiffy, Conor added: “The reason I picked the name Wiffy was because I wanted some alliteration as it was a good marketing tool.
“The name which kept cropping up was Willy the Wizard and I was so focused on not using it.
“This was because if we had any kind of sexual connotations I knew we were going to get smashed [in the boardroom].
“One of the names we thought of was Wilfy, but that was a bit weak, and then I threw Wiffy out there as a throwaway comment, but we didn’t come up with anything better so we stuck with that.”
She candidate said he had no regrets about the choice of name because he’s “gone out with a band and people will remember the Wiffy thing”.
While Conor doesn’t regret his decisions on the show, he did voice his frustrations about being in the boardroom.
He said: “When you present the product to the expert you don’t see the girls pitching theirs and it all comes out in the boardroom and there’s an element of suspense there.
“We got hammered in the second pitch when they said the product looked like a turd. I thought we were pretty screwed at first, but I still thought I did a decent job of leading the sub-team.
“But when we got into the boardroom and saw the girls’ product I thought we were up s*** creek here as their product was so much better than ours.
“But when they played the apps I thought ours had a fighting chance as I don’t think the girls’ app made any sense.
“It was a bit frustrating as I felt the guys’ app was better. Then Karren Brady cut across me and was like, ‘That’s what you think’, and I’m not going to challenge her.”
Conor, who said he tried to be respectful to everyone on the show, said he understood why he was brought back into the boardroom.
He added: “We all know what we signed up for and there was a one in three chance that I’d get brought it as I made a lot of decisions.
“If I had my time again perhaps I would have put more pressure on the product team as they were behind the failure of the task.”
The Apprentice continues on BBC One next Thursday at 9pm.
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