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The Apprentice 2 Weekly Performance Review, Episode 6: Fashionably Fired!Page 2
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Kelly: You seemed to be the MVP this week. Unlike last week, when I thought you took control when you shouldn't have, you actually stepped in when it was most advantageous, especially because it didn't seem like John was willing to. You even helped the designer by making a great suggestion that was actually used, and helped control the guys in the fabric store! I'm reminded of Bill's performance last season in the Planet Hollywood challenge. The team lost, just as with last year's example, but it sure wasn't because of you. However, you don't like Andy for some reason, and that puts me against you.
Andy: According to the Insider video footage, you actually suggested and fought for Darren to be your designer and disagreed strongly with Ilsa. I'm surprised this wasn't highlighted more in the show, because I'm sure - even though I thought Ilsa's designs were better - that Ilsa was one of the reasons for the team's loss.
This is the second time you've been brought into the boardroom and the second time you didn't deserve to be there. You can actually use this to your advantage the next time you're taken in, saying basically that you haven't deserved to be there before and the other guys are picking on you because they don't like you or are afraid of you. However, this could prove to be a double-edged sword. Obviously you don't have the respect of your team, and without respect, a leader is a higher-paid failure. Perhaps more than anyone else left, you would benefit from a change of teams.
Kevin: As Betsy pointed out in her column, trying to make the buyers feel sorry for you was about the worst plan you could have had. Very weak. However, for the rest of the episode you were like the Greek Chorus, pointing out John's mistakes left and right. And of course, I have to point out the horrible pricing strategy. Not impressive either.
John: If there is one prevailing reason you were fired this week, it's poor decision making. More than anything, your decision to bring Kevin and Andy into the boardroom led to your downfall. You had absolutely NO answer to the question of why you didn't bring Wes in with you. Andy simply did NOT deserve to be there, and you couldn't justify why you brought Kevin over Wes. And the one person whose presence you could have justified above the others, Raj, was safe and comfy in the suite.
There's one thing about this season's contestants I can't figure out. As anyone who watched the first season knows, there have been times that Trump gets a wild hair up his ass about someone and ignores a poor performer in favor of getting rid of someone he doesn't like. He did it with Kristi last year. He did it with Bradford a few weeks ago. And I firmly believe that, had Raj been in the boardroom this week, he would have fired Raj. He seems to have had a problem with Raj since day one, asking the women, "What's up with the guy with the cane?" He made disparaging remarks about Raj's flirting with the models and bothering the designer, and what's more, Raj was arguing with George! This all should have been a flashing neon sign to John saying, "Take Raj to the boardroom!" Just like with Sandy for the past two weeks, Trump gave the Project Manager a huge hint as to who he wants fired, and the PM ignored him every time. What's even more baffling, each time the PM only took two people back to the boardroom? How can these people justify not taking a chance and saying, "Hey, let's bring in this person that Trump doesn't like, who knows?" It's just not smart.
In any case, all things being equal, John, you were a poor Project Manager. You lost command of your team more than once, didn't control Raj at all, and basically lost the respect of your teammates. You delegated far too much, and sometimes didn't delegate enough. And, of course, you made the fatal mistake of letting Wes and Kevin control the pricing. I can't imagine what possessed you to do that, especially seeing how crucial the pricing was last week. You assigned Raj (and only Raj, it looks like) the task of writing the line sheets, a task which was clearly over his head. Why did he not get any assistance from anyone, when it was obvious that he was not succeeding on his own? Finally, I can only assume you didn't bring Raj into the boardroom because you like him. You see now how far that gets you.
One problem with the men taking on what some might see as a woman's task is that they may have given up and admitted failure before the task even started. I think you did a fantastic job of pulling the team together so that this didn't happen, and you took responsibility for the team's failure, possibly because you didn't have a choice, but still. Unfortunately, this wasn't enough to overcome your many other blunders. Whether the mistake was in the pricing, the choice of designer, or bringing the wrong people into the boardroom, the fact is, you screwed all of them up, and that does not equal success.
Mike DeGeorge has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management from Christian Brothers University in Memphis, and has almost ten years of management experience. He is also Associate Editor of RNO. Email Mike at email@example.com.
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