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The Apprentice

Wow - I hope this show comes out on DVD when it's done;
what an amazing leadership trainer.

[spoilers]





IMHO, he made two capital mistakes tonight -
1) "We don't have time to meet with the client"
Good lord - not only did this alone merit him getting the axe; he may have seriously injured his real-life career on that one. Not just making that decision, but actually arguing about it?
2) When his teammate asked why he was chosen to stay and the answer was "Hey, I had to pick someone." I have a sneaking suspicion that was the real nail in his coffin. He didn't have a reason, he just chose someone at random. Not a good trait in a CEO.

I also have real issues with someone on the women's team who seems to be living in how she wishes the world was; but that discussion could get very very contentious, so I'll table it for now.

Philo

Philo
Thursday, January 15, 2004

I agree, Trump said at the beginning of the episode "work with the boss."

As I said before, they had to define up front what hey were selling, and it wasn't a jet timeshare. What's the image they're selling? Again the women defined this and again they won.

www.MarkTAW.com
Thursday, January 15, 2004

I believe one of his team-mates commented "How you are you suppose to know what market if you don't ask the client?"... something to that effect.  Good point.  Now why didn't any of them disagree with him?  (Sorry I only saw that little part of the entire show, don't really understand it that well.)


Thursday, January 15, 2004

Someone did disagree with this decision - the previous team leader, but this guy was more involved in establishing himself as a power figure than with getting the job done.

"I have 4 guys going to the airport and 4 guys working on the print campaign, who am I going to send to meet the boss."

Wrong answer.

www.MarkTAW.com
Thursday, January 15, 2004

This and The Restaurant I'll definately pick up on DVD.

www.MarkTAW.com
Thursday, January 15, 2004

Well, it was pretty time-compressed.
I was simply incredulous that an ad exec would say meeting the client wasn't important. (of course, that may explain a lot of the ads I see).
But then, even with team members telling him he was making a huge mistake, he stuck by his guns. Sad.

BTW, I thought the women's ad campaign blew the men's out of the water. Who the hell would market an executive jet service based on "your wife will know you're safe"?

Philo

Philo
Thursday, January 15, 2004

According to Gary Klein in Sources of Power (excellent book, I give it my highest recommendation) it doesn't matter if the deadline is 1 hour away or 3 months away, your decision making skills are affected by time pressure.

How you ask? Well you choose the first thing that comes to mind and run through it to see if it will work. The more experience you have the better this first choice will be. If you run into a reason it won't work you scrap it and come up with a new plan. Unlike most decision making models, the truth is you don't ever compare the two unless you really have no idea what you're doing.

Though as we saw last week with the women, a group could circle around two or three ideas for a very long time.

www.MarkTAW.com
Thursday, January 15, 2004

The men were working without focus. One of the women chose a direction, and even though nobody agreed with it, they stuck by her. The men, as always, were mired in beauracracy and b-school platitudes.

www.MarkTAW.com
Thursday, January 15, 2004

How does one not let the person who makes pitches all day make the pitch?  And why does the entire team need to be there looking useless?  Send the pitch men in, introduce the creative team, and don't rely on give-aways to close the deal.  And there's some really poor use of personnel occuring on both sides.

Quite interesting to watch.  If there's one thing the entire group is lacking it's communication skills.

Lou
Thursday, January 15, 2004

Oh yeah, that's another one. The guy who was giving the lessons on presenting should have made the presentation.

If I had no 2nd person to choose, I would've stopped at 1 person. Well, I don't know what I would do in that situation, it's hard to go against not just Donald Trump but also the rules of the show. Just think of how impressive it would've been if you said "Everybody else performed great, I refuse to choose a second person."

www.MarkTAW.com
Thursday, January 15, 2004

I think the guy who got kicked off could have made the grade if he simply stood up for himself. He's so concerned with what other guys think of him that he's losing focus of what's important. He's a "play by the rules and keep your head down" guy and simply not used to dealing with being in authority. He needs practice.

www.MarkTAW.com
Thursday, January 15, 2004

And oh by the way, another classic managerism - Did you notice that Mr. "We don't have time to meet the client" *did* have time to put together a powerpoint and spending charts?

Philo

Philo
Friday, January 16, 2004

I would have fired whoever put that lame Powerpoint presentation together.

Clearly NBC told Trump to keep that Sam guy around for comedic relief.

Jorel on Software
Friday, January 16, 2004

It's weird. I usually can't stand these reality shows, but this one grabs me. I think Donny made the right decision in firing the team lead on the basis of not meeting the client, but the second reason seemed a little weak to me. He had to pick two people, so he picked Sam and another at random. He obviously didn't want to, so it came off as a little contrived.

I think the guys have got to pick Sam as the next lead. Seems like the only way out of a bad situation. Sink or swim.

I just couldn't believe the quality of the guy's presentation. Awful. Protraying men as weak instruments of their wives' will, when you're selling to high-powered executives? C'mon.

And by the way, can you believe that Tanya cheated on Roland in General Hospital??? That little tramp!  ;-)

Nigel
Friday, January 16, 2004

I was thinking they're just keeping Sam around to keep the show interesting, but I'm not sure.  Maybe Trump really believes it when he says he'll either be exceptional or tragic.  I think from the previews Sam is chosen as the next project manager.

It would've been a tough decision, but I think I would've fired the same guy Trump did.  Even though Sam really grates on me.  That ad campaign was LAME!

I'll say it Philo:  "Pot calling the kettle black" is NOT a racist statement.  That girl's got some issues.


Friday, January 16, 2004

I think the reason Trump fired the team lead instead of Sam (and agreed with everyone - tough call) is that the lead was in the seat and screwed it up. Sam was just in a supporting role. When a team screws up, you start at the top.

He probably also figures if Sam is as bad as he seems, he'll have plenty of chances to fire him later. [grin]

Philo

Philo
Friday, January 16, 2004

I think Trump fired him because he gives the impression of fumbling and trying to catch up. He's nervous and it shows, he's not used to this kind of thing, and his parents probably spanked him as a kid so he's nervous around authority figures.

If he could have backed up his decision with "I made an executive decision based on the situation. We had 48 hours to put this together so I assigned a team to go to the airport to set up a film crew while a team stayed behind to brainstorm ideas and work on the print campaign. The way I saw it, we didn't have time to talk to the bosses. I now see that this was a mistake, I should have made time for them."

And if he backed this up with the right attitude - I'm not defending myself, I'm stating it as it was, but his whole persona seemed to be about justifying his existance and decisions, i.e. focused on himself rather than the project.

Also, when dealing with Sam, he could've said "Sam, you constantly interrupted me, questioned my decisions, and generally made it impossible for anyone to get any work done. Then you fell asleep when you realized I wasn't going to have any of it."

But it's easy being a Monday morning quarterback.

www.MarkTAW.com
Friday, January 16, 2004

"Sam, you constantly interrupted me, questioned my decisions, and generally made it impossible for anyone to get any work done."

I thought all employees did this?  have I been misled?

FullNameRequired
Friday, January 16, 2004

Also, despite their victories, the women's team is setting back the perception of women in the workplace about 50 years.

Jorel on Software
Friday, January 16, 2004

Well of course. Secretly we hire people who will prevent us from getting any work done and who have a negative impact on the environment.

I think it's on page 34 of the secret HR handbook.

www.MarkTAW.com
Friday, January 16, 2004

So are the men, what's your point?

www.MarkTAW.com
Friday, January 16, 2004

"the women's team is setting back the perception of women in the workplace about 50 years."

How do you figure?

If you're talking about trading on sex, IMHO that's moving the workplace forward - only an idiot would pretend that sex doesn't sell.

Philo

Philo
Friday, January 16, 2004

The men are just somewhat inept. The women thought it would be a good idea to be called Donald's Darlings.

I have yet to see one of the men selling lemonade for $5 because it includes a phone number and a kiss on the cheek.

Jorel on Software
Friday, January 16, 2004

Because that wouldn't sell. But I'll bet if Troy & Nick (I think) had taken their shirts off and set up shop outside a women's clothing store they might've done okay. However, in general to use sex to sell you have to have a woman doing it - the men would just have to find another angle.

BTW, I think this was another area Omarosa screwed up - she was unhappy with the "sex sells" approach and kept making comments about "the client might not like it." BS. SHE didn't like it - she was rationalizing. [it's a valid concern, but the meeting with the client didn't give me the impression they were shy about leveraging that angle]

And discussions like this are why I think the show will be such a great tool - not just watching it, but talking about it afterwards.

Philo

Philo
Friday, January 16, 2004

Jorel's problem is not that they're using sex to sell, it's that they're using *themselves* as as sexual objects to sell.

If they hired women to stand on a streetcorner, flirt and sell lemonade he would be okay with it.

www.MarkTAW.com
Friday, January 16, 2004

By acting like silly schoolgirls the women appear to be unqualified to be the CEO of a major company.

Unless that company markets and sells push-up bras.

But of course they chose attractive young women with the express purpose of showing them flirting around town.

Jorel on Software
Friday, January 16, 2004

And the men aren't acting like silly schoolboys?

www.MarkTAW.com
Friday, January 16, 2004

No, they aren't.

Have you tried watching the show before commenting on it?

Jorel on Software
Friday, January 16, 2004

You're right, silly me. What is this gray box with the darkened glass in my living room anyway. I've been using it to hold down my furniture.

www.MarkTAW.com
Friday, January 16, 2004

That's ok. Why don't you try commenting on the things you do watch, like SpongeBob and the Teletubbies?

Jorel on Software
Friday, January 16, 2004

Oh yeah those are my favorite shows. Though if anybody acts like a schoolgirl it's that Spongebob. Good thing he's not on The Apprentice, he'd make a better CEO than any of those fools.

I mean really, if this show has taught us anything it's that acting like a schoolgirl will get you ahead in life. Now I would love to stay and chat, but I have to get fitted for my buckle shoes.

www.MarkTAW.com
Friday, January 16, 2004

Ok.

Get these images out of my head NOW!

Simon Lucy
Saturday, January 17, 2004

It's like some other poster declared in another thread:

Looks like the smartest thing I did in college was joining a fraternity. 

people skills! people skills! people skills!
people skills! people skills! people skills!
people skills! people skills! people skills!
people skills! people skills! people skills!
people skills! people skills! people skills!
people skills! people skills! people skills!


Saturday, January 17, 2004

Hmmm. Sorry, I was testing out some troll repellant.

www.MarkTAW.com
Saturday, January 17, 2004

You must've joined a pretty special fraternity - the ones I know of tend to inculcate an attitude of superiority and entitlement.

One of the hugest people skills that will get you ahead in this world is being able to treat everyone as a peer (except your superiors, of course). Fraternities tend to teach "if you're not one of us, you're subhuman" - while often successful, it also often bites you in the ass.

Philo

Philo
Saturday, January 17, 2004

Sam didn't lose the business, the team leader did.  The emotional decision would have been to fire Sam. The business decision was to fire the team leader.

anarkissed
Sunday, January 18, 2004

I'm assuming your labelling these decisions "emotional" and "business" also carries a connotation of "wrong" and "right." The previous week he fired someone who wasn't the team leader and wasn't responsible for the team's failure. He just stuck out and made an ass out of himself, but didn't suck up nearly as well as Sam.

The first guy that got fired running around with a sign and Sam trying to make a $1,000 sale didn't impact the success or failure of the project to any great extent. Mostly both times the rest of the team just stood around and watched.

The team leader was inept on multiple levels, and I believe that this was apparent during the "board room" meeting. As I said before, he was more worried about saving his own ass than getting the project done right. He couldn't justify his choosing the second guy, so he backed down when he was confronted. He could, however, attack Sam and he did. He did this instead of owning up to his mistakes.

On another note, I have to wonder whether after Donald sends everybody out of the room, if those interactions with his right and left hand people are canned. It doesn't feel quite natural. I suspect we're getting a staged recap rather than the actual dicussions.

www.MarkTAW.com
Sunday, January 18, 2004

I'm very happy that Sam is gone, that guy was a neurotic disaster. He doesn't have even remotely close to what it takes to be successful on this show, and I agree with what was said before, he was kept around for amusement. Sam is the type of guy that if i was to meet, I would hate before he even said anything. I can't understand how someone could be so dramatic and such a kiss like that, obviously it doesn't work, and in the end you just look stupid. Case proven; Sam. I can't wait to see what he has to say after the show is over and they interview him, I’m sure it will be another lame excuse.

One more thing, he wonders why no one had any respect for him, how can you respect a guy who wears a hat like that & prances around like a little girl meeting a backstreet boy after shaking good ole' Dons hand.

And what post would be complete without a comment about Donny boy’s comb over

Don, I think you have enough money to buy some hair, hell, i bet Sam would sell you his... Go for it big guy!!

jack
Wednesday, January 21, 2004

yep

jack
Monday, January 26, 2004

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