Phone Shop Idol is currently airing on BBC Two (available on iPlayer) over a period of six weeks. The show is the mobile's version of X Factor and aims to showcase the best sales people within the United Kingdom.

We have caught up with Jason Appleyard from Three, who has already provided plenty of comical moments. He has provided the series a lot of publicity through his Twitter, "You should watch Phone Shop Idol to gain an insight to the mobile phone industry. This is real life and shows individuals taking pride in what they do."

The cameras followed Jason for around six months, "To appear in the show was a complement to the team I was leading and shows testimony to the journey that Kiet and Ayyub had been on from being unemployed – lacking in self-confidence to leading performance within our store."

What does Jason think he's like outside the show? "My management style is very crazy and quirky, but supportive and loving at the same time."

Jason is mentoring Ayyub Barnett and Kiet Nguyen, who he nominated for Shop Idol. "They had grown in confidence, knowledge and stature within the store. I felt them worthy to represent the brand. They have changed their lifestyle and what they stand for."

Both Ayyub and Kiet joined Three from Tomorrow's People. It is an initiative to help disadvantaged adults and young people to find jobs. The organisation's aim is to change lives by re-skilling and improving the prospects of those who face the greatest barriers.

"Youngsters from Tomorrow's People have a varied background, they need support to get back into work and are generally lacking in self-confidence. Three run a seven week program where we place individuals into stores. At the end of that period, they have to complete individual and group presentations to Senior Management. Individuals are then placed within stores if they display the correct behaviours."

"I have supported over eighty people back into work and I stay in touch with those who are not successful. I try to keep them out of gangs, gun crime and give them skills for personal life."


Appleyard originally worked at Carphone Warehouse (Basingstoke, Reading) before joining Three in March 2009. "I was first based in Hampstead and built success within that store, before moving to Edgware and Kilburn. For personal reasons I moved to Lewisham and have spent three years growing the business year on year. When I joined Lewisham it was underperforming, I led a team to ensure that we finished within the fourth highest target in the business."

Though why did he become a manager? "I love making a difference in people's lives. I believe that you can always see who loves what they do, as they will always exceed. I love my job and what I have achieved at Three. It's pride in performance that drives my team."

What next for Jason? "I have just finished working in Three's Brent Cross store. I have recently resigned, as I have a new opportunity where my ideas will help shape the business I am moving into. In my spare time, I am working with Crisis (charity for homeless people) and I also support Fathers4Justice. I live for today as tomorrow may never come, I thrive on making a difference to people's lives."

Jason Appleyard was talking to Telly Binge in February 2016. To find out more, visit his Twitter.