The Apprentice 2 Weekly Performance Review, Episode 2: Mmmmmm... Donuts!by Mike DeGeorge -- 09/22/2004
I think Carolyn said it best: it's not rocket science, it's ice cream! That being said, it's interesting that this week's fired contestant wasn't fired for poor performance in the challenge! Walking into the boardroom, you would have had no idea that Bradford would be the one going home. But, indeed, he was. How did everyone else perform? Let's find out.
The flavor you chose was chocolate/vanilla swirl with donuts. I wouldn't have thought it would have been very good. For one, I figured the donuts would be mushy, and for another, the different flavor mixes should have clashed. Did you include ALL the flavors? Raspberry cream, lemon eclairs, sprinkles? Eww. And whoever's idea it was to promote it as a breakfast food needs to be hired right now - brilliant!
Chris and Kevin: Not enough of you to make a good determination of your skills. Doesn't mean you didn't do anything, just that we didn't see it. In fact, I think this may be an indication that you two make it quite a ways.
Raj: I'd just like to say that I still like your style. Keep up the good work, my friend!
John: What the hell were you thinking, barking orders at Raj and arguing with the Project Manager about a simple little thing like spending a couple dollars on food?
Wes: I still don't like you, mainly because of the cocky air you have. It's enough that I wanted to single you out, so let's hope you mellow out a little in weeks to come, or else you may be gone soon. You also weren't a very effective salesman, product information or no.
Pamela: So you didn't like how controlling Kelly was? On the other hand, I just think you can't handle NOT being in control. You may be a successful businesswoman, but if you don't have the respect of your team, you've got big fat nothing. And swooning over toast points and caviar isn't impressing anyone. Asking seventeen million irrelevant questions won't either. Nor will "selling" like a three-year-old that's been sent to their room. You like to feel important, whether anyone cares about what you have to say or not. It's a cliché because it's true - respect has to be earned, and you're begging for respect like a dog begging for table scraps. "I like caviar! See! I've got class!" It's unbecoming.
Andy: I wanted you to be Project Manager this week, and it looks like you volunteered, but lost the luck of the draw. If I were you, I would have fought a little harder - you may have and we just didn't see it, to be fair. I also liked your little speech at the restaurant. I saw it as a small gesture to mend fences. Hey, everyone was against you, and you're classy enough to start fresh and not hold grudges. Time will tell if that happens, but in the meantime, you're another one of my favorites.
Kelly: I loved you in the role of Project Manager this week, particularly the way you handled John's little snit about breakfast. No argument, you laid down the law, and people respected it. Another thing I really respected was you asking Trump to donate the entire amount to charity. Such a simple gesture, something that didn't even need to be done, but it meant a lot in a lot of people's eyes. I would guess you didn't do it for this reason, but I'd be willing to bet that Kevin would be more that willing to back you up if you needed it as a result. Contrary to a lot of PM's, you're making friends, not enemies. Textbook, my friend. This was perhaps the best job by a Project Manager in either season, and you deserve to be saluted for it.
Another disaster for this team! Last week I don't think was so much a victory as a loss by Mosaic, and this week you couldn't overcome a strong performance by the other team. Your flavor was that weird velvet silk cake - it sounded pretty nasty to me and looked worse. Like medical waste or something. Yuck! That was the least of your problems, however, as we'll see.
Elizabeth, Jennifer M., Sandy, and Stacy: Again, not enough to make good comment.
Maria: I like your work for the most part. My biggest complaint with you this week echoes what George said. How could you have missed the second cart a half a block away?
Jennifer C.: My advice is pretty simple: Shut. UP. Even after Bradford was fired, you piped up with "I've learned never to speak up again!" Um, no you didn't. Had you learned this simple idea, you wouldn't have spoken! In another boardroom, telling Trump "that's insane" when he gives his opinion would have gotten you thrown out so quick your head would spin.
Stacie: Your big problem is that you don't have the respect of any of your teammates. Now, normally I would consider it a plus that you don't relate to this pack of giggling ninnies, but unfortunately, in business you can't choose your co-workers. In other words, learn to get along or get going.
Ivana: Let's put it bluntly: Bradford was fired for doing exactly what you refused to do - take responsibility. Something that really drives me nuts, whether it's an employee or a little kid, is pointing fingers and yelling, "It's not my fault!" Yes, it WAS your fault. It took three hours to locate the other cart? You couldn't have sent more than one person to look? You got kicked out of the TKTS line, so why did it take you so long to figure out another corner? Was it because you didn't have a whiteboard to list one hundred and fifty-three options?
You had no spine, you were indecisive, and you refused to take responsibility for anything. Your team was a disaster with you in charge, and say what you will about Bradford's leadership, but he got results and you didn't. If Bradford was chaos, as you day, your stint as PM was Armageddon. Or do we just not know what all went into it? Let's see what else. You couldn't decide how many people to bring with you, you couldn't decide if you told Stacie to call about temps, you couldn't decide where to put the cart. You were rude in the boardroom, interrupting and getting snippy with all three. You're the one who should have gotten fired, and you know it. And that's another thing - you obviously didn't think Bradford should have been fired, so you should not have brought him in with you! Trump even made fun of you after you left! How many reasons do you need? Relish these last few days in the competition, unless you produce some solid gold out of your rear end, you're not sticking around much longer.
Bradford: Everyone knows what you did, it earned you a Hall of Shame moment. Did you deserve to get fired? Absolutely. You simply CAN NOT give away an advantage like that in the business world. SHOULD you have gotten fired? Absolutely NOT. You did a tremendous job on the challenge, and notwithstanding the immunity, there wasn't a chance in hell you were going tonight. As indicated above, Ivana was the poster child of the failed leader, but your rash move stopped that, didn't it?
The thing is, I could see what you were trying to do by giving up your immunity, not holding yourself above the others. I could respect it. Trump, obviously, did not and only saw the egotism involved. And yes, there WAS a ton of ego involved, but I think Trump would be the first to tell you that a large ego isn't always a bad thing in business.
In the end, though, no matter if you should have been fired or not, you gave up your immunity. So you have no one to blame but yourself.
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 Assistant Editor of RNO. Email Mike at email@example.com.
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