All right, after a week with no show, it’s now the 9th week of the most famous (and most likely only) 15-week-long interview! Even though two episodes aired in one night two weeks ago, I felt a bit bereft last week with no Apprentice.
After the recap of the last episode’s firing (Leslie), Lee made a huge faux pas upon his return to the candidates’ suite. Instead of saying that Leslie fought the hardest of any of the folks with whom he’s been in the Boardroom, he said: “She fought the hardest of any of those I’ve fired.” Delusions of grandeur there, Lee? While I think he has lots of great ideas, especially when it comes to marketing and focus, he’s the youngest candidate there and has been brought into the Boardroom more than any of those remaining on the show. Methinks he’s gotten a bit cocky.
The candidates met up with Donald Trump, his son (Donald, Jr.) and daughter Ivanka in the lobby of the Trump International Hotel and Tower. Representatives from Ameriquest, the sponsor of the task ahead, were also there. This week’s task had the candidates designing a souvenir tourist program for Ellis Island that would include historical bits, photos and such. Ellis Island, of course, is where 12 million immigrants arriving in the United States entered the country from 1892 through until 1954. The main building was reopened as a museum in 1990 and is a part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument. Proceeds from the sales of the brochures made by the teams will go to the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, Inc.
Teams had to take a Circle Line boat to the island. Those run on a fairly regular schedule around Manhattan daily. Lee decided he had to be the Project Manager for Gold Rush and, if they lose, he knows he’s history. Allie stepped up to the plate as the Project Manager for Synergy. Again, Lee’s ability isn’t necessarily that of a true leader. He delegated Tarek and Michael to go to the island and take the photos needed for the task while he and Charmaine stayed in Manhattan trying to cold call hotels in attempt to sell bulk copies. That wasn’t all that fruitful and I personally think he left Tarek too much in charge. Perhaps it was the right path with the final outcome, but if they lost would he blame Tarek? He made a few excellent decisions otherwise, though.
The whole Synergy team went to Ellis Island and, not surprisingly, Andrea balked at Allie’s leadership. Allie wanted them to explore around and take notes. Andrea thought they should just get the pictures and snag all the brochures already offered to use for content ideas. Uh-oh! Tammy was the note-taker and left her notes behind as they were leaving the island. So, half the team took off, the rest remained until they could catch the next boat. Andrea decided, since she’s a graphics expert, she’d create the brochure cover layout. (May I roll my eyes here, please?) It was bad. It was so bad. Thankfully, Allie stuck to her guns about how bad it was despite Andrea’s nastiness about things. “I heard you deep sigh me! Don’t deep sigh me,” ranted Andrea. Hee hee!
The weekly after-commercial-break quote and lecture didn’t seem to have much to do with the candidates at all this week. Trump lectured about priorities and balancing family and business. The only connection I could see with this one was the fact that Donald, Jr. and Ivanka were there instead of George and Carolyn.
Okay, here’s where Lee stepped up to play with the big boys. While he once again delegated a bit too much to Tarek by letting him create the brochure (he’s a graphic expert just like Andrea!), he did some things very right. First, he got the team up before dawn to head out to sell the brochures. Second, he snagged the best location for selling them – Battery Park, where the tourists often wait in line for at least and hour or two to take the ferry to Ellis Island. It wasn’t only a captive audience; it was a captive audience with an interest in Ellis Island. It was win-win. Plus, Tarek actually seemed to create an attractive cover shot for the brochure. In addition to getting up early and snagging the best location for selling, a $100 bulk sale came through from one of the calls made by Charmaine.
By the time Synergy arrived at the same location, Gold Rush already had the crowd of tourists in their hands. Foolishly, Synergy decided to go to the museum itself to sell their brochures. Now, that just doesn’t make sense to me. If you can’t sell to the folks waiting on line to go to the island, what would make you think you can sell them the brochures once they get to the island? Huh? I think, if I were leading the team, I might split them up and send each one to various tourist hot spots in town rather than try to sell to a crowd that already has bought a more attractive brochure. Folks visiting the Tenement Museum may also be interested in Ellis Island … places like that. The Empire State Building crowd. Anywhere but trying to sell to people who already bought Gold Rush’s brochure!
The initial Boardroom with both teams didn’t really hold any surprises for me. Gold Rush sold $1548 in brochures while Synergy sold only $843. Ameriquest donated an additional $10,000 to the foundation. Allie wasn’t confident even before the results were announced. When Trump asked her, she was already blaming Andrea. It turns out that Andrea also claimed to be a bulk sales expert, but didn’t use her expertise to help the team.
I couldn’t believe that Trump actually acted like it’s the first time he’s heard of any problems with Andrea. How could he miss her attitude, the problems she has with others, her lack of ability to lead or follow? Maybe his hair has affected his mind or something. I say, as far as Andrea goes – lead, follow or get out of the way, preferably the last. I couldn’t work with or for her.
Trump accompanied the winning team on the prize, a golfing trip to his golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey. Giving pointers was pro VJ Singh. I couldn’t get excited about that. I think I’d rather swim with sharks.
While Gold Rush was out there on the green swinging and putting, Synergy was at the suite conspiring against Andrea. “I will go after her!,” vows Andrea. “This will be the worst boardroom ever. There will be blood on the walls,” claims Allie. Tammy, Allie and Roxanne try to convince Sean that Andrea’s brainwashed him. Although he’s not convinced, it puts him in some sort of stupor where pretty much all he can say is “I’m in an awkward position” over and over again. Andrea eavesdropped on the others, got caught and the circus went on.
Back in the Boardroom with Trump, he once again played his “I’m so surprised that Andrea isn’t a star” act, praised Roxanne a lot for how well she puts forth her thoughts in a rational manner and didn’t even ask Allie to select anyone to go into the firing Boardroom segment. In her defense, Andrea claimed to be an expert at hiring experts. I thought Ivanka actually seemed a bit on Andrea’s side. What was up with that?
“Andrea, you’re fired.”
In the cab heading home, Andrea told the truth. “There’s a reason I work for myself.” There sure is!
Dollar bills, y’all…