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The Apprentice 2 Weekly Performance Review, Episode 6: Fashionably Fired!by Mike DeGeorge -- 10/18/2004
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Not the most riveting of episodes, at least for me, because unless it's Zoolander, I have no use for the fashion world. I could even care less about supermodels. Unlike most of mankind, apparently, I did NOT have an Olive Oyl fetish growing up and prefer women with a little meat on their bones and more skills than walking a straight line.
That said, this was a fantastic test for the men. Could they take a task that was way, way, WAY out of their element and be successful? Well, we know the answer to that one is "no." But did they at least perform well? Er… no, again. Let's get the details!
Boy, I just can't imagine how you sold so much, unless you learned the lesson from last week and cut prices to nothing. Your fashions were uninspired. A capelet? That's your signature? Yeesh. It just seemed dull and unimaginative, but I suppose it worked.
I also have to give credit to Pamela. She obviously did a great job in bringing this team together as a unit. Sometimes it takes an outside force to crystallize exactly how much better off you were before. You got lucky, though. If that sort of thing happened in the real world, you'd have been stuck with Pamela for a while, and we all know what a horrible fate that would be.
Elizabeth: Lord help me, I have to agree with Maria that your style just doesn't work in a high-pressure environment. You have to consider as many angles as possible, but when time is a factor, there are many instances where you have to make a decision and stick with it. As I told Jen C. a few weeks ago, there are times when you just have to shut up, and you don't seem to realize that. Arguing after a decision has been made is one of those times.
Ivana: I have to give you credit for recognizing the team's problem with overanalyzing everything. It took a little while, but the fact is, you actually realized the problem, which as everyone knows, is the first step toward FIXING the problem. For comparison, see Elizabeth, who can't seem to grasp the concept. I'd be interested to see your next stint as Project Manager, to see if you can put what you've learned to good use. A manager that makes mistakes is not an issue - a manager who doesn't learn from their mistakes IS.
Jennifer: I remain unimpressed. I have yet to see you make a significant contribution to your team.
Sandy: Remind us why you're there, again? I've yet to see any talent whatsoever.
Stacey: Yeah, get hardcore. And then don't do anything the rest of the task. Yeah, you were edited out, but I think had you actually DONE anything hardcore, we'd have seen it.
Maria: Let's get this straight - you think you would do well at fashion because you studied home economics? If your little black studded outfit from last week's boardroom was any indication, you should be the absolute LAST choice to have anything to do with clothes. I'd choose Raj over you. I also have to take issue with the way you treated Elizabeth. If you have a problem employee, you don't just shove them off to the side. You work with them, and give them tasks that work to their strengths, not give them busy work. Many a Project Manager has been fired for not figuring this out. You were lucky.
Treatment of Elizabeth aside, you had the team working well. How much that had to do with their excitement about the task and how much it had to do with you is a huge question in my mind.
I know jack about fashion, but I have to admit that I liked your stuff better. That dress with the leash was classy! Unfortunately, for the second straight week, you priced too high. Maybe you thought since it helped you win last week, it would work this week, but you learned a valuable lesson: in business, the phrase "jacking up the price" seldom leads to good things.
Chris: Boy, you're a cocky little ass, aren't you? The problem with you is, you haven't shown a thing that justifies your cockiness. I mean, Kelly makes a significant contribution to the task, and all you can do is make fun of him for it. Did the words "team player" ever come up in any of your experience?
Wes: Your only real contribution this week was setting the prices, which was pinpointed as a mistake. You DOUBLED the prices that Ilsa gave you. What were you THINKING? A nice markup is one thing, but come ON! We don't see much of you on this show, and what we see is invariably negative. Not good.
Raj: I said last week that your "differentness" might lead to your undoing, and it sure looks like you're heading down that road. Trump zeroed in on your hitting on the models and bugging the designer as proof of your poor performance. While this wasn't necessarily due to your "differentness," I contend that, had anyone else done it, it would have been a minor annoyance instead of a major problem. You're fighting an uphill battle, and unfortunately, much as I like you, I have to wonder if you have the skills to survive.1 2 Next-->
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