The Apprentice: Archive Footage Reveals Business Secrets

"You're Archived!" - It's the new buzz phrase, get used to it.

FINALLY! The Apprentice 2010 starts tonight, admittedly not everybody’s cup of telly, but some of us in the archive are “110%” excited!

We had a look in the British Pathé archive for Apprentice themed footage, and WOW, we found some real gems! From a cheesy 1960s school for salesmen to a 1945 article telling women what to wear for work… British Pathé’s archive footage guide to The Apprentice: (Short cut to all clips)


“The first rule is to SMILE” announces the business studies coach, who then parades around his pupils shoving a mirror in their faces so that they can practice. Brilliant! This clip includes other top tips like how to get passed the director’s secretary, and some boardroom secrets – like NEVER wear bright shoes. We like the creepy bit when the narrator sounds like Gollum all of a sudden and sneers – “Sorry boy. You fail.” WATCH!


We love this 1960s business school in Knightsbridge where folk learn how to influence people and to re-train themselves. What we today call personal branding, this amusing clip shows a man and woman attempt to talk over each other without intermission for several minutes. Cringe alert. WATCH!


Having left the forces this 1945 lady “can’t wait to get into her civvies”. She picks herself “a utility one in blue and white striped rayon linen”. 70 years before Gok Wan it seems British Pathé had their own burning fashion narrative “Now for some gloves!”, “The way she’s looking now – that job’s a cert!” WATCH!


“When a girl like Elizabeth sets her heart on something, all the notices and fences in the world won’t keep her out” Determination is a core skill if one is to win a BBC1 television series. In this video the beautiful Elizabeth is determined to be an air hostess. She demonstrates several traits which are pure Apprentice gold, like major eye-lid fluttering and marching defiantly in front of her rivals. The narrator gasps: “Her mind is made up, she’s going to get the job”. And she does! Do you know what Elizabeth’s secret is? Like all fans of The Apprentice will tell you – don’t answer back! WATCH!


One’s working environment is essential when the clock is ticking. That’s why we love this “Flying boardroom” of 1963. Yes – it’s literally in the air! WATCH!


You need more than a big breakfast to win The Apprentice. Waking up at 5am, being catapulted to the coast and being given the impossible task of making Margate a desirable destination, and all before lunch – Sir Alan weaves a cruel and gruelling world for his applicants. As these two businessmen know on a walk from London to Brighton, the show must go on. Last year The Apprentice had to go to Margate, At 5 minutes in, two businessmen can be seen walking when their secretary turns up and hands them their mail, she jots down a few notes. WATCH!


It wouldn’t be The Apprentice without someone getting a Blackberry thrown at their head across the back of a taxi. Talking of taxis we found this lovely clip of couple who run their own ‘Flower Taxi’ in Chelsea. This is like the outcome of a task on The Apprentice, which made us think that maybe candidates should just browse the British Pathé film archive for ideas? A formula for success if ever we heard one. “Jeannine handles the artistic side” sounds like an Apprentice style kiss of death. The shot finishes with flowers being dragged off by the taxi in a cloud of exhaust fumes! WATCH!


We’re going to miss Margaret on The Apprentice this year but Karen Brady should be a good blast, we always enjoyed her contributions to previous series. As a virtual toast to Karen, here’s a clip of Birmingham City beating Chelsea in 1968. WATCH!


Lord Alan always sends his winning team off for a treat like a caviar tasting session or a day at the races. We’d send our winners off to Britain’s first beauty farm in Knebworth. Perfect for “crows feet and double chins, and forget the strain of everyday life!” Spiffing. Beauty Farm WATCH!


Last but not least, the most emblematic footage of all, it just screams THE APPRENTICE, and that’s footage of London from the air. Here we have London’s very-own 1950s helicopter station on the Southbank. WATCH!

Watch all of our Apprentice themed clips in one place here.

The Apprentice is at 9pm tonight on BBC1