Monday, September 20, 2010

Week 1 Task : Design an ultra modern function space.

My two cents on The Apprentice
Week 1
Task : Design an ultra modern function space.
Judged on:
  • Execution
  • Functionality
  • Originality

*On this season’s Apprentice, it's all about getting America back to work. The contestants are either unemployed or struggling entrepreneurs and this is a good platform to get theirs!

The first week is where we get introduced to the contestants and this task brought out the dynamics of the group.
As the show progresses, I like to try and understand the candidates and make my own pick, compare this to my friends and see if the producers pick the same people to be fired week after week and ultimately hire The Apprentice in the end.

The first person to catch my attention is Steuart. While the contestants are in the boardroom for the introduction, he is shown making a comment about how Dave does not look prepared because he looks tired and stressed. Here is someone commenting about a person they have just met, even before the tasks start. Well it later turns out that Dave is on unemployment and has 5 kids. Its no wonder he looks tired. Steuart takes another jab at Alex because he confuses Phoenix and Icarus. Well it might be 5th grade Mythology but how sure is he that everyone did their 5th grade in the US. He needs to be more open minded. Let's see how far he can get.

Wade is an interesting candidate. I am not sure I quite like the way he volunteers Gene to be project manager. The first task is usually the hardest since no one knows their team's talents or weaknesses. He is probably setting Gene up for a fall because “I do not want to stick my head under the lawn mower”. --His own words. I would say he is a schemer. With over 11 years in real estate, he might actually be someone that the producers have their eye on.

Gene does not do too well on day one. His leadership style is military and it seems to strike a bad chord with some of his David.

Dave strikes me as someone that is going to cause trouble for Octane. I kinda have a feeling that should the men lose, either Dave or the PM will be fired. But you never know, this is reality TV and it is sometimes very unpredictable.

Enter Nicole. She strike me as a very intelligent woman. She’s all about beauty and brains but lacks judgement.She practically grabs the opportunity to be project manager. Again, the first task is not something that any of the contestants should jump at, unless they have very good PM skills including delegation, or they have a lot of experience related to the task in question. She has neither of the above. It is very clear at the beginning of the task that if the women lose, Nicole would be fired. Tyana mentions that she has experience. Nicole should at least try to listen to Tyana’s ideas and modify what she does not like. But she is shown saying Tyana's ideas are tacky. She also says Tyana frustrates her which is an obvious bias. Biggest mistake. However, she eventually decides to take Tyana furniture shopping but only because she wants someone to blame in case that turns out to be the reason they lost.

The female contestant to watch is Mahsa who apparently has been bossing people around since she was a child. I liked how she was so direct and open at first. She seems to totally grasp Nicole’s leadership sense. She was quoted as saying that Nicole has a lot of grace on the outside but is lacking in soft sense. That said, she is a bit of a turn off in the boardroom. She has good points but she tries to talk over everyone (maybe this comes from her attorney background). I try to keep an open mind, but Ivanka seems to pick up on that too.

My Verdict:


Enter the boardroom...
The women's space was very boring. The colors were drab and the office had no life. The reception was very inviting, I just wish the rest of the space would have followed the same trend. Mr. Forty threw the final spanner in the works.

The men's space had more life. It actually looked like something I would like to work in. The boardroom was missing a TV,very important in today's business world it was also too small. They did not have defined reception are.

It was no surprise that Nicole was fired, although I thought that they might fire Mahsa because of her lack of professionalism. But this is reality TV and it thrives on such characters.

Project Management Lesson 101:
Find out your teams strengths and weaknesses and manage these. As a PM you are not really managing the project, but managing the human resource to help you accomplish your goals.

Stay tuned...


  1. Unfortunately the Apprentice that's showing in Kenya is many years older than the one over there. But I have to ask: Was this blog post written completely by you or was it auto-generated?

  2. Patrick, the blog post was written by me.