Interview: Alexa Tilley

By londonist_alex2 Last edited 217 months ago

Last Updated 10 May 2006

Interview: Alexa Tilley

Who do you think will win then, Badger or Michelle? We'll find out who Sir Alan Sugar will be poking his digit at for the last time tonight at 9pm on BBC 2, as the second series of The Apprentice reaches it's conclusion.

London's representative in the series (Ansell grew up sarf of the rivah, but has since decamped to 'London-on-sea') crashed out in episode 4, after a nasty experience with chickens, pizza and that twit Sayed. Here's what she had to say for herself.....

Your name and occupation please.

Alexa Tilley, Management Consultant

We've seen you on our TV screens. Did you enjoy your time on The Apprentice?

Yes – I really enjoyed it, as it was such an out of the ordinary experience, to be involved in the programme. The business tasks were quite intense at the time and we all had to work very hard, but there was also quite a few laughs as well with amongst all the Apprentices. The only thing I didn’t much enjoy about my time on the Apprentice, was getting fired….but then, 13 out of 14 people were always going to get fired, so I was ready for it as well.

Sayed and Tuan stitched you up didn't they? How come they weren't fired when you were?

I think Sayed wasn’t fired because he makes cracking tv! I mean that was an awful lot of chicken that he over ordered!!

I think Tuan wasn’t fired because Sir Alan maybe felt he hadn’t yet see enough of him to judge him properly, where as he had already seen me in the previous boardroom, when he said he would give me another chance. I think he just felt that as he had given me another chance and the task had gone so badly against us, that his view was it was it was my turn to go, as I had been the project manager.

Is Alan Sugar a big softie underneath all that bluster?

I wouldn’t be surprised if he has a ‘nice’ side….it’s just I didn’t ever get to see it! I do though think that he has a great sense of humour and some of the things that he comes out with in the boardroom really do make me laugh!

Being fired can't be very nice. How will you turn it into a positive experience?

Being fired is very unpleasant and it’s not nice being spoken to the way Sir Alan spoke to me. The thing is that I think you win some and lose some and particularly in business, it is the people who can bounce back and come back stronger after a failure, who are always going to be the more successful people in the end.

Already the experience has been a very positive one for me, due to the friendships that I have forged with other Apprentices and also due to the amazing experiences I have had as a result of being on the show e.g. sitting on the sofa with Richard and Judy was great fun! Also going to the world premiere of Basic Instinct 2 was fantastic. Oh, as well as this I had such fun doing the Harry Hill Show and being able to take part in a sketch that made fun of pizzas and chickens!

But in terms of longer term plans, I am going to start doing after dinner speaking/ motivational speaking seminars. I feel that there are a lot of business insights that I can draw from my time on the Apprentice, as well as being able to throw in some amusing Apprentice anecdotes of course!

What's next for Alexa Tilley?

I am continuing as a management consultant for the time being, alongside doing my after dinner speaking. Lots planned outside work as well. I am climbing Mount Kilamanjaro in June and in August I am doing the London Triathlon!

You're a management consultant. Which of these great managers do you most admire and why: Maggie Thatcher, Sven Goran Eriksson, Josef Stalin and Paresh, who manages the newstand at Wanstead Tube Station.

I admire Maggie Thatcher for being such a strong leader and being able to influence people so effectively in her time as Prime Minister. Even if you didn’t agree with her politics, it was clear to see her qualities of managing people around her, as she certainly got a lot done.

Our manager, the editro, keeps on making little typos in the pieces that he writes. It's potentially a sensitive issue, so how do we go about addressing it?

I think you need to whisper in his ear that this is beginning to cause some unrest amongst the staff and that maybe he needs to type a bit slower or otherwise check through his writing once he has finished!

And now some questions on London...

You were born in London we see, but whereabouts and do you still live here?

I live in Mill Hill in North West London, where I have lived all my life. I am a Millhillian at heart!

What's your favourite...

...street in London? Oxford Street, for the shopping!

...park in London? Regents Park. Aldo Shoe Shop, at Covent Garden Camden Market, for the selection of foods from around the world and the interesting clothes for sale to people-watch? Starbucks in South Kensington. to chill-out? La Brocca Italian Restaurant in West Hampstead. to get lashed? The Roadhouse, Covent Garden!

What advice would you give Ken Livingstone?

Increase the frequency of the buses

The world is ending in 24 hours. How would you spend your last day in London? .

I would go for a walk around Kenwood and over Hampstead Heath and finish up in the Coffee Cup on Hamsptead High Road, drinking a latte!

Have you ever been sick on the Tube?


If you could lose one part of London, which part would it be?

South London, as it’s just so far away from North London and takes too long to get there from where I live!

Greatest thing ever to come out of London?

Wimbledon tennis Championships

What advice would you give to someone new to London getting on a night bus for the first time?

Keep your head down and look like you know what you are doing…oh, and don’t fall asleep and miss your stop!

Thanks to Alexa for the interview, you can check out what she's up to HERE .