Celebrity Apprentice Episode 3 Recap
|January 23, 2008||Posted by Roshawn Watson under Uncategorized||
By: Roshawn Watson
Episode 3 commenced with a corporate reshuffling. Since Gene Simmons led team Hydra to a win on the last task , Trump asked Gene to lead team Empressario (the women) to a victory. Gene reveled in the request and gladly accepted. After suffering two devastating and embarrassing losses, team Empressario welcomed Gene’s contributions.
The task was to create a Kodak mobile experience. Both teams each received an air-streamed bus, several cameras, and Kodak’s brand new Ink Jet Printer. The teams were judged on originality, brand message, and profits; the proceeds go to the team leader’s favorite charity. Tito Ortiz, from Ultimate Fighter, led the men’s team (Hydra).
Team Empressario: Gene started off the tasks saying that he leads as a benevolent dictator, which surprisingly went mostly unnoticed from the team. Gene’s first decided to split the team in two. Carol Alt and Nely Golan met with the Kodak executives while the rest of the team began planning for the task.
Kodak was pretty adamant that the key feature to their new printer is that the cost of printing is significantly reduced; however, Nely Golan just didn’t get it, even after the executives reiterated their point. Nely spoke of about factoids instead. Consequently, Nely and Carol contributed little insights about what the executives wanted. Gene rejected the “executives opinions” and continued to hammer out his plan.
Gene’s idea and theme was “it is a Kodak world. Welcome.” He delegated busy work while he oversaw the implementation of his vision. Ultimately, Empressario delivered a very polished and focused marketing experience.
Team Hydra’s approach differed. First, all of the members went to the meeting. Consequently, they accurately discerned the desired direction the Kodak executives wanted for their product. There were very notable contributions from Piers Morgan and Stephen Baldwin. Still, there were some hiccups. For example, in the war room, Stephen had manic-like energy and rambled. However, he eventually came up with a very good theme: “It is an ink revolution.” Additionally, in the eleventh hour, Baldwin, Tito, and Lewis were on top of a table taking pictures for a banner. As the table collapsed, coffee spilled onto the computer with the sole copy of their last 8 hours worth of art work. There data was apparently unsalvageable, which was devastating. In the middle of the night, they scrambled to finish their task. Their campaign was ultimately unpolished and not aesthetically pleasing but had great messaging.
The results: Team Hydra once again slaughtered team Empressario because they had better branding and better profits. Alec Baldwin just happened to purchase a couple new printers for a thousand dollars each, which of course helped the men’s bottom line. Jim Cramer, host of CNBC’s Mad Money, served as a guest judge. He and the Kodak executives clearly favored the team Hydra’s strategy.
The boardroom interactions were perhaps the most interesting thus far. The only one of Gene’s team mates that really publicly criticized his efforts was Omarosa although she was professional. Nonetheless, Marilu Henner and Jennie Finch also said that Gene should be fired. Carol Alt said that she or Nely Golan should probably get fired, for they were the ones who met with the executives. Trump then expressed his displeasure in Nely’s performance, saying that she was in a better position than anyone there to excel at these tasks. Trump also pointed out that the executives were disappointed at how much Nely’s spoke in their meeting without really listening. Ultimately, Gene was given a decision about who to take back into the board room, and he initially only wanted to take back Omarosa. After prompting from Trump, he decided to take one more person back into the boardroom. Gene decided to take Jennie Finch, probably because she was one of the first who said that he should be fired.
Gene was dogmatic in saying the executives were wrong. While interesting, he was unconvincing. His selection of two non-key players for this task sealed his fate. The beloved Gene Simmons was fired.
Listen to Your Client – The miscommunication between the Kodak executives and team Empressario was obviously due to lack of listening. It was an unfortunate mistake. Listening is vital. Entrepreneurs who are attentive to their clients needs will often be rewarded with repeat business, referrals, etc.
Listen to Your Team – I pondered about what would have happened if Nely and Carol Alt had listened to the Kodak executives, and I concluded that there was still a good chance that team Empressario would have lost. That’s because Gene Simmons didn’t listen to his team. Leaders who are attune to their employees and teams can be tremendously more effective because they benefit from the wisdom of all members. Gene even refused to receive Trump’s counsel about who to take back to the boardroom.
Be Flexible– The spilling of the coffee on team Hydra’s art work yielded a very sloppy presentation. I was impressed with how the guys scrambled together something, rallied behind one another, and articulately and persuasively convinced patrons and executives of the “ink revolution.” Being flexible is by far a crucial skill in today’s market. Tito’s charity, The St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, was rewarded because of the team’s vigilance.
Copyright 2012, Roshawn Watson, Pharm.D., Ph.D. All Rights Reserved.