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The Apprentice: Weekly Performance Review, Episode 2 – Asleep at the WheelPage 2
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Troy: You were the first to try to get Jason to meet with the owners of Marquis. It didn’t work, but it seems that nothing anyone said would have made a difference. More importantly to me, you helped Sam calm down when there was nothing in it for you. Nick was the MVP of the team; you are the soul of it. Over two episodes, you’ve shown yourself to be a true leader. I feel you are a front-runner for the job, but the only attribute I think you’ve yet to display is a killer instinct. I’ll be watching you more closely than anyone in the coming weeks.
Kwame You were willing to take the responsibility of Project Manager but didn’t demand it. But maybe you should have. You had every right, with your background, to fight for it. This hesitation could be seen as a sign of weakness. I’ve noticed that you have an aversion to standing behind your thoughts, which I see as a lack of confidence.
Sam: I can’t believe you’re still here. I have to say I’m shocked, actually. Trump obviously sees some potential in you – he seems to be the only one who sees it, but then again, he’s the one who counts. I thought your falling asleep would absolutely kill you, but it didn’t. Some think the producers had something to do with it. The credits have a disclaimer that basically says “The producers consult with Trump about whom to fire, but the decision is ultimately his.”
That’s the beauty of this show. Sam could stay until the last episode, because he makes great TV, and there’s ZERO chance that he would sneak in and win. Unlike Survivor, there’s no need to get rid of the threats or people you don’t think deserve to win early.
Jason: Initially, I thought Sam should have been fired instead of you. With a bit more thought, I realize why you were fired. First and foremost, the decision not to meet with the Marquis owners was what lost the account for VersaCorp. You never admitted that it was the problem. You seemed surprised when Trump said so. See, the ad people picked the women’s ad because it was flashier – that’s what the client wanted. Had you met with the client, your team might have glitzed up the ad and good taste would have prevailed. Geez, Donny even TOLD you to swing for the fences and make something atypical. But you didn’t listen.
Secondly, you did something in the board room which pisses a lot of managers off to no end. Instead of taking responsibility for your failure, you almost broke your arm pointing fingers, especially at Sam. You didn’t exactly go out of your way to tell Trump that Nick shouldn’t get fired (you simply said “it had to be someone,” which is a big difference), and Trump saw that as disloyalty. A manager who won’t stand up for his employees is not a manager most bosses want to have.
Either of these two offenses – a critical mistake that loses the account, or poor leadership and not sticking up for your crew – might not have been enough to overcome Sam’s sleeping on the job. Together, they were lethal.
Should Sam have gone? I say no. Sleeping on the job is, without a doubt, grounds for immediate termination. However, by Jason’s own admission (which he explained at more length in his RealityNewsOnline interview), Sam was doing nothing more than a small, unimportant task. Sam may have fallen asleep out of boredom, frustration, or even spite. Here’s the important thing, Jason: what did you do when Sam fell asleep? Did you wake him up and read him the riot act, or did you sit there and point at him, laughing? You may have figured that he was a lost cause, but that merely makes you a failure as a leader. One thing managers in this show don’t seem to realize is this: the failure of your employees is your failure, no matter what else happens.
It will be interesting to see Sam as Project Manager next week. I don’t think he’ll be going home, knowing Mark Burnett’s style as I do. If Sam were going home, he wouldn’t foreshadow it quite so heavily. I predict that the women will lose, and either Omarosa or Tammy will be out on the streets.
Mike DeGeorge has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management from Christian Brothers University in Memphis. You can email Mike at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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