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The Apprentice 2: Why Maria LostPage 2
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Fifth is to be loyal. Maria was not particularly disloyal in the way that, for example, the way Tammy was in the first season. But she was not respectful of the Project Manager’s position, either. When Wes tried to tell her to do something, she acted like he was an underling, not her acting boss. That was a big problem.
The sixth rule says not to show your hand. This one is getting a bit less important as we cut down the numbers. It was pretty obvious that Maria would be targeting Wes. But beyond that, she announced it to the world, and Wes knew it was coming. That gave Wes some time to think about how to respond to her charges. If she had kept her mouth shut (yeah, I know, not likely) or tried to misdirect Wes into thinking that she was targeting somebody else, he might not have been quite as prepared.
As we move on to the seventh rule, playing well with others, I think our answer is pretty obvious. Maria flat-out lied, she got in people’s faces and made faces at people, she argued, she was bitchy, etc. Simply put, Maria did not play well with others.
Maria also was unable to focus on the long-term. For example, in this last challenge she was so determined to do things her way that she ignored the game aspect. When Wes told her to hurry up and that they had enough shots, she should have listened to him not only because he was the boss, but also because then if they lost she could have blamed him for ignoring her expertise in the area. That thought never appeared to enter her mind, though. She was focused on showing off how great she supposedly was, and that was pretty much it.
Apex (in particular Ivana) did a good job of thinking outside the box. Rather than simply create a strict catalog, they went for something different. Maria, who took the lead on the marketing aspect of this task (because we all know how great she is at that), thought well within the box. She gave Levi’s a rather dull catalog that didn’t even focus on the one thing that people look for in jeans – the butt. So much for Maria’s expertise. And so much for her ability to think creatively.
Finally, we have the rule that a player needs to use common sense. Without repeating too much, is it common sense to not have a specific price worked out with a printer when you are on a strict budget? No. Is it common sense to send out an advertising e-mail without a contact phone number for appointments? No. Is it common sense to lie about these things when the people who can show that you’re a liar are right there? No. Is it common sense to insist that you are a great presenter when you blink so rapid-fire as to make people uncomfortable and flail your arms about in wild motions? No. No. No. No. Maria is in serious need of some common sense.
Looking back, we have to wonder how Maria managed to stay as long as she did. A lot of it was happenstance. Perhaps the only thing that saved Maria back in the third episode (after her screw-up with the printer) was all the women ganging up on Stacie. After that, she was lucky enough that other people picked up the slack and her team won even though she screwed up (as in the bridal salon challenge), or other people screwed up more than she did (as in the QVC challenge).
For a while, it looked as if that might happen again this week. Sure, Maria screwed up, but Wes allowed it to happen. Might she convince Donald Trump that the loss was really Wes’ fault for not reining her in? Well, yes. Wes was indeed fired. But Maria went first.
Maria showed herself to be pretty much incompetent in almost every task she undertook. She lied, she overstated her abilities, she was unable to see her own shortcomings, and she didn’t get along with other people. She couldn’t lead, she couldn’t follow, and she wouldn’t get out of the way. That is why Maria lost.
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Betsy Wasser’s Apprentice 2 Episode 11 recap:
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline and can be reached at RNO@pobox.com.
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