After the past few weeks of watching "The Apprentice," anyone with a college degree may have started to question if four years spent as an undergraduate was nothing more than wasted time. The Street Smarts team has really cleaned up, and the university grads have faltered in nearly every challenge so far. With a five-to-seven manpower advantage, the task this week was Net Worth's to lose.
The concept for this challenge was simple: both teams had to create a piece of graffiti advertising to promote Sony's upcoming "Gran Turismo 4" racing game for the PlayStation 2. Focus groups would provide feedback on each ad, but ultimately, it was to be the Sony executives who would decide the winner.
On the surface, it appeared that Net Worth had the advantage here. Tara, the project manager, had a clear vision of what the advertisement should be, and she seemed capable of rallying the team behind her. Only Audrey caused a fuss, clashing first with Tara over the concept for the artwork, and later with Craig (who finally got to speak on-air) over the chain of command.
The real friction came, however, when it was time to pitch the ad to the executives. Tara must have felt a good deal of ownership over the project, as she explained in detail the concept without ever giving any bit of credit to the rest of her team. You could see the entire group flinch each and every time she used the word "I" rather than "we."
Ultimately, it seemed that Tara may have either over thought or misunderstood the task. While the clearly-stated goal was to create an ad for the game, Tara seemed to think she was supposed to create some sort of art installation for the community. First, she was concerned that some part of the ad would offend the target audience, a fear that may have stifled the rest of the team's creativity. Throughout the process, she stuck to her idea of integrating the artwork with the Harlem landscape, a thought that seemed counterintuitive to the ultimate goal. For the ad to truly me memorable, it should stand out from its surroundings, not blend in.
Without a clear vision, Magna had a much harder time of it to begin with. The team seemed disorganized, and actually began to paint their wall before they had even decided on a concept for the ad. Project manager Alex realized quickly that his team was well on their way to yet another failure, and took decisive action.