One of my great TV pleasures is watching The Apprentice, a show that sometimes leaves you bewildered at the lack of business acumen its so-called candidates reveal in their behaviour and in their ideas. To even get on that show you need to have accomplished something and attained some level of success, however modest.
Watching them at times, that’s hard to believe.
The first task, in Week One, of the show is technically the easiest.
The candidates are split into two teams and sent to basically sell tat from a market stall. The team with the most money and highest value of unsold stock combined wins. And in the losers team someone gets fired. Simple stuff. But it is incredible how screwed up it gets sometimes.
The first key fundamental is to know what sells.
Those items which are vanishing from the shelves faster than you can replenish them … those are the hot ones.
Those are the ones you send people to the cash-and-carry to buy in bulk.
It doesn’t matter if it’s the “World’s Best Dad” mugs or the inflatable dolls … you get all of them that you can fit in the boot of a car and you rush them back to the salespeople and you keep on turning over the profits.
Sevco has spent the last two years telling fans to boycott strips. They’ve spent the last half a week telling those same fans they can now buy them. They made much of how the shops were cleared out in a single day … with the home strips first to go.
So of course, that’s exactly what they didn’t re-order in bulk.
Huge lorries rolled into Ibrox just the other day from the Sports Direct warehouse.
And you don’t have to guess what wasn’t on those lorries.
The one that’s supposed to generate all the profits.
The one they carp on and on and on about.
Thanks to The Brains Trust over there, there are still no home strips in stock.
You want to talk about useless? There ought to be a picture of these muppets in the dictionary beside that word, because that’s what they are.
So their fans queued up outside the ground this morning to buy them, only for the club to announce that they weren’t part of the re-supply.
And yes, it makes you giggle.
I hope they got their money’s worth of Scotland’s Third Best Team mugs.
I wonder if they sold any inflatable dolls.
I’m sure there are plenty of kids who’ll be going to bed tonight in Mark Warburton’s Magic Hat pyjamas (buy one get two free) or under Andy Halliday blankets (he is also part of a buy one get two free package, of course, but no-one spending money on that) but no birthday boy or girl will be waking up to a Barrie Mackay home shirt from last season unless it was bought last week … because there were none in stock when daddy stood in the rain this morning.
Amateur hour stuff from this mob.
Anyone who believes they are capable of making serious money out of such pitiful arrangements is a pure fool.