78% of entrepreneurs 'wouldn't work with Suralan'

Apparently, most entrepreneurs wouldn't accept a job with Alan Sugar, even with the £100k salary. Then again, would most entrepreneurs accept any job?

by Emma Haslett
Last Updated: 14 Mar 2011
Granted, he’s not the most popular chap on telly, but according to a new study by accountancy software company Kashflow, entrepreneurs are actively against the idea of working for Apprentice tough guy Sir Alan Sugar. Apparently, 78% of business owners who took part in the poll said they’d turn down a job with Suralan (‘Lord Alan’ still doesn’t flow as well), even with the £100,000 salary on offer to the show’s winners. Then again, entrepreneurs are a proud bunch, and finding one who’d accept a job with any other high-profile business type might be a long shot at the best of times…

Let’s start with the positive stuff: of the 22% of people who said they’d snap up a job with Lord Sugar, almost half said it’s because they’d like the opportunity to learn from him (although pointing at someone and saying ‘you’re fired’ is probably less complicated than they’d expect). Just under a third said they’d like the challenge, while a mere 4% said they’d be attracted by the salary (although for the rest, we’d imagine it came a close second).

Of those who didn’t want the job, just under a quarter said it was because they didn’t like him – which is, to be honest, fewer than some might expect. 9% said they probably wouldn’t be able to take the pressure, 11% said they could earn just as much working for themselves (no specifics on what sorts of businesses they’re from, before you ask), while for a whopping 54%, it was more of a principle thing: they said they’d rather have the freedom of an entrepreneurial lifestyle than being locked in an office and bossed around by a short man. Which is fair enough. That is part of the point of being an entrepreneur, after all.

So while this survey may not be ground-breaking stuff, it does at least illustrate that for the majority of the UK’s entrepreneurs, money is still not the first thing on their minds. Though perhaps they’ll feel differently in a year’s time, if the Treasury’s forecasts turn out to be over-cooked…


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