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The Apprentice 2, Episode 7 Weekly Performance Appraisals: New York’s Finest?by Betsy Wasser -- 11/03/2004
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First of all, big thanks to Mike DeGeorge for taking over this week’s recap of The Apprentice. Click on that link and you’ll see that Mike did an awesome job. And even bigger thanks to Mike for giving me the opportunity to take over the performance appraisals for him this week. After watching the show, I have lot to say about how some of the candidates performed, and I’m glad to have a chance to say my peace.
As my most dedicated fans/stalkers may know, I work in marketing. Thus, I found this task to be very interesting. I liked it because it wasn’t just a guerilla test of selling (like the ice cream and dog tasks were), but challenged the candidates to be both creative and to show some business sense. So, how did the candidates stack up? I thought you’d never ask.
Fans of The Apprentice often object when a task is measured subjectively. It’s much easier to compare facts, like who made more money selling ice cream, than opinion, like who came up with a better ad. But in this case, I think it was pretty obvious that Mosaic did a far better job than Apex. From the beginning, Donny Deutsch told you to come up with an emotional campaign. Your campaign did just that, coming to the heart of why a person might choose to serve in the New York Police Department. And the tagline “When Was the Last Time,” was outstanding. It was versatile, so you could use it for an array of different messages while still showing a consistent image. Well done.
Andy: You’ve had a lot to prove since day one, so I’m glad you finally got the chance to be project manager to show what you’ve got (although I don’t know why you didn’t volunteer before instead of letting PM’s be chosen at random). For weeks now, project managers have been dragging you into the boardroom claiming that you’re young, inexperienced, and require constant babysitting. I never saw it, but I was starting to think that since so many people were saying so, there might be some truth to it. This week, you proved – to me, at least – that you can more than take care of yourself. If you didn’t prove yourself to your teammates, I don’t know what else you could do.
From the beginning, you took clear and decisive action. You came up with that great tagline, immediately understood the need to appeal to the emotions, and let that lead all of your actions. You were smart to ignore Maria’s suggestion that the campaign needed more sex, but in arguing with her, you weren’t a jerk about it, which is good. You showed that you don’t have to put down someone else’s ideas to advance your own, a lesson that many of your older opponents have yet to learn. Good job too compromising with Wes about presenting the ad. I’m sure you would have done a great job of it on your own – a good debater is more than just a good arguer – but this way, you allowed him to feel involved as well and kept the peace.
My only objection this week is that you didn’t delegate enough. You came up with the concept, directed the ad, worked in the editing room, and did part of the presentation. Basically, it was The Andy Show. I can’t argue with success, but in future tasks, and indeed in your future career, you can’t always do everything. You need to learn how to use your team members to your advantage. Still, you did an incredible job as project manager. Well done.
Kelly: You didn’t stand out as much this week as you have in weeks past, which may have been a product of how much Andy personally took on with this task. Still, you insisted on having an important role, that of presenting the ads, and you did an excellent job of it. You have a tendency to step up and take over where it’s needed, which has been great in some past tasks (like in the fashion task when PM John was flailing). But remember that you don’t always need to take over. You remain my favorite to win this whole thing, and I hope to see more from you next week.
Maria: You work in marketing and claim you would have done a better job than Andy did. Oh, really? Then why didn’t you volunteer to lead the team? You also claimed that young men, your target demographic, needed a campaign with more sex appeal. I don’t think you meant what Andy thought you meant – sexy bare-chested cops straddling motorcycles – but it’s hard to see what you did mean, since you didn’t explain yourself well at all. If you had pitched an alternate concept instead of just saying “sex appeal,” Andy might have seen your point. But since you didn’t, you just came across as a naysayer.
I also want to say a few words about your fashion choices in this episode. A strapless tube top is never appropriate in a business setting, not even in a casual, creative field in which Donny Deutsch wears jeans. This isn’t a matter of taste (like with the silver studs on your black suit or the flower pin you wore last week that was the size of your head); it’s a matter of what is and isn’t proper business attire. Here’s a hint: if it requires specialty undergarments – like a strapless bra – don’t wear it to work.
Sandy: Near as I can tell, the only reason you’re still around is that your project managers have yet to bring you to the boardroom. Remember when you washed dogs last week? That is absolutely the only time I have seen you make a positive contribution to your team. This week, once again, you did nothing. You are also one of the few people left who hasn’t served as project manager. Volunteer to take charge next week, and please, show us something. And what I said about Maria’s strapless top goes for your one-shoulder hot pink top as well.
Wes: Jennifer objected when you gave Elizabeth advice on how to survive the boardroom. I don’t think there was anything wrong with the few tips you gave her – they weren’t exactly earth-shattering – but do remember which team you’re on.1 2 Next-->
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