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The Apprentice: Los Angeles, Episode 8 Performance ReviewsPage 2
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I actually think Muna might have been the one going home if Arrow had done a better job. Her rating is NEEDS IMPROVEMENT. If she were to make it to the final episode where there’s a thousand minor details to consider, her head might explode.
It’s a sad fact that a smooth presentation can sell a lukewarm concept, yet a garbled presentation can kill results for the best of product. Arrow should have stopped rewriting their script at some much sooner point, and concentrated on rehearsing what they had until it was more polished.
A key fact or two have not come out. First, who was responsible for assuring brand integration was sufficient? It became an issue in the Boardroom and no one seemed to be responsible for it. If that fell through the cracks, ultimately Surya must take responsibility. Secondly, a related item… who was responsible for the content of the script? The GNC exec felt key elements were missing, yet no one had to defend themselves over that key point.
Frank: I can tell from my mail that some of you readers disagree with me, but Frank needs to find a way to work with people he doesn’t like and not show his disapproval so readily and so immaturely. Two examples from their time in the van are the over-exaggerated shushing of the others and the deliberate timekeeping of the quiet period.
Yes, Surya was generating an nearly unbearable amount of frustration among his team members by a variety of behaviors (outlined below). Of them all, Frank was the one most overwhelmed by Surya’s dogmatic and over-engineered approach to these projects, and he was the one who responded most childishly.
Of course it was incredibly ridiculous of Surya to stop the brainstorming session just as it was starting to be productive. Almost a “Hall Of Shame Moment,” I think. But, mocking the boss, especially so overtly, is never an acceptable business behavior. Frank’s been doing it for two or three episodes now.
It’s not all bad news for Frank this week. He knew to think big and to try and get the crowd involved and his thoughts in support of the boxing idea seemed solid.
In Frank’s oral presentation of their inferior material, he sounded unprepared and the message got lost. This is no surprise given that he was rewriting it right up to the last second, but the fact remains that the words did not flow smoothly. Although I applaud Frank’s attempts to make their production better, last-minute unrehearsed changes will backfire more often than not.
By comparison to earlier efforts, this was as low an energy level in front of a crowd I’ve ever seen from Frank. Probably that’s due to a lack of rehearsal time, but as the one holding the microphone, Frank had extra incentive to limit the changes so his presentation was smoother and more confident.
Advancing to the Boardroom, there was more good activity from Frank. In the early weeks, he had a lot of trouble giving concise replies to The Donald. He exhibited big progress here, explaining the concept of their event in one sentence. Or maybe that wasn’t the concept, maybe that was the aim, or, the objective or… oh, let’s just ask Surya. But at least he was brief. He did it again (being brief, I mean) explaining where they went wrong. Well done.
Frank still gets a NEEDS IMPROVEMENT rating this week. Next week Surya won’t be around to distract Frank and we’ll see if he can pick up his game.
James: James took part in the initial brainstorming as well, identifying the boxing as something “engaging” for the crowd. His support waned as the task went on. He seemed to feel their presentation was too small for the large venue. I’m not so sure I agree; they had an oversized ring and Tim kept moving around. If the ring had been much larger, then Tim would have looked too small in it and the image would have been farcical.
However, to still be expressing concerns five minutes before the event starts was ludicrous. There’s a time to raise concerns and that had passed. At this point there was only one thing to do – as Tim Gunn of Project Runway would say, “Make it work!”
James’ lack of teamwork may be a big problem in future tasks. In a deleted scene, Tim told us he was not sure if he trusts James, called him “strategic,” and said, “He is killing the spirit of the group.” Tim expounded, “James is the type of person who is always positioning himself. He always has one side of his brain focused on the Boardroom, and one side of his brain focused on the task. That person is useless to a team.”
I think I need to comment on the editing here. I may well be wrong, but I don’t recollect seeing this trait exhibited from James before. But Tim referred to it both inside the Boardroom and earlier, so I feel it must be true.
With the Boardroom looming, Bill Rancic told Trump that James made it difficult for the team to focus. Oops!
However, James’ fear that their message was not getting across was correct. It seemed like he was trying to address those concerns, but way too late. Timing is everything, and complaining after the budget is gone is just whining.
In the Boardroom, both Surya and Trump tossed the word “disloyalty” around regarding James, while Bill Rancic nodded along with them. Again, this bodes poorly for his long-term future.
Also in the Boardroom, James claimed Surya suppressed brainstorming, yet it was confirmed by Tim that Surya called for more ideas and none were forthcoming. That’s a real big “whoops” there! Tim also supported Surya’s assertion that James usually raises his concerns at the eleventh hour. Double whoops!
When Trump asked James how many wins he had a PM, was that a serious question? Thanks to the dopey new rule that winning PMs remain in place, many will NEVER get a chance to lead. James made the right response, that he’s ready to lead and vowed to do so. We’ll see if he follows up on that next week.
So it was a bad week for James. However, he stated he was not responsible for brand integration in the Boardroom, and no one disagreed – so he lived to fight another day. Not a lot of days, I don’t think – but, he’s still in the game. His rating is certainly UNSATISFACTORY. Disloyalty may prove to be a hard label for him to shake before Arrow’s next loss, an event that will surely come with James as the losing PM.
Nicole: Although I’m sure the “Showmance-lite” continued in some form this week, I was pleased that it was less in evidence. So, I decided to rate these two separately like they were actually two different people this week.
Nicole, with a megaphone? REALLY bad idea – that voice should NEVER be amplified! And shouting, “Hi, Joe!” over top of Frank’s narration, what did that accomplish?<--Previous 1 2 3 Next-->
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