The Apprentice 5 Corner Office and Mailroom Assignments, Episode 3by Jenn Brasler -- 03/16/2006
This week the candidates had to corporate retreats for car dealers and promote the 2007 Chevy Tahoe. Synergy’s event went off with only minor hitches (like the skeet-shooting ban) and they easily won the task. Gold Rush, however, had a few disasters and didn’t impress many people. Theresa was fired for failing to find a theme for her team’s event, blaming everyone but herself for what went wrong, and for making so many mistakes Trump couldn’t even name them all.
Theresa absolutely had to go. Yes, many people on her team made mistakes, but as the project manager, Theresa was in charge of keeping everything together. She didn’t do that. And, like Stacy last week, she couldn’t take responsibility for her actions. She blamed everyone else for the disastrous task when she was really the one to blame.
Andrea knew that the first step in planning the retreat was to come up with a theme. Tarek tried to get this point across to Theresa, but she was more concerned with being classy and finding a horse and buggy. This wound up being a major part of her downfall, as Synergy’s whole event came together once they decided on a theme. Without a theme, Gold Rush as lost and, as Lenny said, no one knew what he or she was doing. Theresa should have been on top of things, but instead she felt that since she’d delegated all of her responsibilities, everyone else had to take care of his or her part of the task. She didn’t realize that as project manager, she was supposed to make sure everyone was working to make the task as good as it could be. For this, she lands herself a trip to the mailroom.
As is usually the case with the losing team, it’s hard to pick out a star. This week, however, I think Tarek deserves the corner office. Any problems he had on the task really stemmed from Theresa’s poor leadership. Carolyn called him out for screwing up the golfing, but Tarek wanted to put down fake putting greens, which would have at least made the ground look a little better. Theresa said no. (Why Tarek didn’t bring this up in the boardroom, I don’t know.) As mentioned above, Tarek knew that the team needed a theme for the event. If he’d been allowed to get a word in edgewise during Gold Rush’s brainstorming session, he might have saved his team. Tarek wasn’t a shining star, but no one really was, so I’ll give him a turn in the corner office.
Synergy won the corporate retreat task by working well together and knowing exactly what they needed to accomplish. They understood the task and what they were supposed to do with the dealers. They saw all of the steps they needed to take, as well as the end result - they saw the big picture and the little pictures all at the same time. All of the problems I have with Synergy’s members are personal, and I don’t want to send anyone to the mailroom based on them. Therefore, everyone is spared the mailroom this week.
As much as I don’t like Andrea (who I think is a snob and a little full of herself), I have to give her the corner office this week. Not only did she lead her team well, she knew how to deal with trouble - she gave Brent busy work and kept him out of the way before he could ever be a problem. However, she did it in a way that if they’d lost, he wouldn’t be able to complain about being marginalized. For not having ever seen the show before (as she says on NBC’s website), Andrea knows how to play the game.
Andrea also exhibited a skill Trump loves, thinking on her feet. The Trump Lesson of the Week, “Plan B,” was obviously about her, since she was able to quickly think of a replacement for the skeet-shooting after she was told it wasn’t allowed in the park. Instead of sitting around and complaining that Synergy’s plans were ruined, Andrea got right back to work and came up with a substitute activity, one that happened to go over well with the dealers. She also chose Sean to share information about the Tahoe, and he seemed to know what he was doing. One of the main points of the task was to motivate the dealers to buy the Tahoe, and Andrea knew that she needed to emphasize this. This week she gets to relax in the corner office.
Week Three Tally:
Gold Rush fell apart this week, but Synergy kept everything together very well. If they can continue working the way they did, they’ll go far. Gold Rush is so scattered that it will take a skilled leader to guide them to another win. Synergy, however, would probably be well-served by any member of the team (except Brent, of course).
Corner office: Lee (1), Lenny (2), Leslie (2), Charmaine (2), Tarek (3)
Mailroom: Tarek (1), Summer (1), Lee (2), Theresa (3)
Corner office: Allie (1), Roxanne (2), Andrea (3)
Mailroom: Brent (1), Stacy (2)
Jenn Brasler is an Assistant Editor of Reality News Online and an aspiring writer from Falls Church, VA. You can e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you’re wondering why she doesn’t like Andrea, read her bio on NBC’s website and ask yourself if it’s not about a snob with a superiority complex.
Be sure to sign up for our e-mail update so you can stay informed about new articles on the site! And take a look at the rest of the site. You can find all of our recent articles on this show at our The Apprentice page and take a look at our sections on The Amazing Race 7 and Survivor: Exile Island. You can even buy reality show stuff at our Reality TV Store!
For more news about The Apprentice, be sure to check out SirLinksALot's Apprentice page!