It was a case of beauty and the beastly game of mini-golf. NetWorth’s Audrey, arguably the most photogenic Apprentice ever, led her team to defeat in a contest that featured the humblest of carnival games. And who would have predicted it? It was a challenge involving miniature golf that finally got the “book smart” Magna team on par again with the “street smart” NetWorth gang. After 7 episodes, both teams now have 5 players left. And the odds makers are back to even money on whether a college kid or a high school grad will win the match to be Donald Trump’s Apprentice.
Now all true Trumpologists know that The Donald is a golf nut. He builds and owns landmark courses worldwide. This episode, Trump asked both teams to create a theme, build, and run a mini-golf course at NY City’s Chelsea Piers amusement park. The winner would be the team who booked the most revenue in a one-day mini-golf marathon.
But even before anyone teed it up, NetWorth’s Audrey shot a triple bogey with her meltdown over her teammates’ lack of respect for her. John confronted Audrey, saying his 22-year-old teammate was unworthy to serve as project manager but after some serious pitching, Audrey sold her team but the victory was short-lived. Magna project manager Stephanie and her brilliant sidekick Kendra. Kendra’s genius stroke came when she did exclusive deals with all the other Chelsea Pier concessionaires to hand out discount coupons to Magna’s mini-golf course. The coupons brought in big business, and Magna out-earned Networth by $508 to $304.
From the opening gun, the NetWorth squad’s morale was sub-par. Audrey’s episode-opening meltdown even turned off her friend Angie. And when the bickering failed to subside during the critical promotion leading up to the course openings, NetWorth became its own worst enemy, chasing as many customers away as they promised to attract.
Both teams picked tried-and-true carnival attraction themes for their courses. NetWorth chose a circus motif for their mini golf course, while Magna went with a safari layout. But as NetWorth soon found out, a cute design and a whole promotion team in clown costumes cannot out-sell a well-executed discount coupon scheme. Of course, it would have helped NetWorth’s cause if the clown-clad team bickered less and if their chief clown, Chris, had stopped scaring away children with his lip-full of chewing tobacco.
In the Board Room, Audrey brought in 3 (rather than the usual 2) but it was clear to Trump that although her appearance brought admirers - her team did not respect her. And, although Trump scolded Chris for his nasty addiction — The Donald soon focused on Audrey, whose mismanagement and lack of team respect had led them to defeat. The Donald gave Audrey the Trump-A-Dump while winning Magna won a golf outing at the mega-exclusive Trump National Golf Club playing with both The Donald and PGA pro, Cristie Kerr
Power isn’t given — it is taken and used to inspire and lead others to action. Audrey delegated tasks but her inability to manage her team and work with them on achievement was the result of her own insecurity and lack of leadership. Instead of claiming the role of project manager and leading the team to success - she used it to pawn off responsibility and blame others for not measuring up. This cost her in profits and team respect.
Customers can’t come and spend unless they know you are there - Magna was brilliant in their vendor alliance building: it got the word out to Pier customers by having flyers in the established places and each flyer was a discount coupon. Without building awareness and marketing it - a business goes nowhere proven by the failure of NetWorth.
Good looks might get you in the door but you need Smarts to keep you there. With all the talk about Audrey being beautiful - it still wasn’t enough. After firing Audrey, Trump mused, “Now they can’t accuse me of hiring the best looking one.” Even if Audrey’s appearance was a factor in selecting her for the show, her undeniable immaturity earned her a disgraceful ride from the suite to the street.
With 10 Apprentices left for next week’s contest, it is all even. And since now the obligatory golf episode now out of the way, next week’s show promises to get back to business, with more great lessons in store. Stay tuned.
Jay Whitehead is America’s most-read, most-watched and most-listened-to expert on workstyles and careers. Email your questions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.