“You’re Fired!”


Donald Trump graduated from the Wharton School of Finance and went to New York City where he created The Trump Organization. Developed by one of the most renowned businessmen in the world, The Trump Organization has established an elite brand through real estate development, property management, sales and marketing, hotel collection, golf course portfolio, residential and commercial brokerage, publications, clothing and entertainment. One of the most well known catch phrases by Donald Trump is “You’re Fired!” When teams face Trump in the boardroom on The Apprentice television show, it is no surprise that the environment is cut throat. Donald Trump and The Trump Organization maintain a vast amount of power in the business world. Consequently, they face fierce competition within markets and rely on the success of each of their divisions to stay on top. 

 

One example of a successful division within The Trump Organization is entertainment. Donald Trump developed one of the number one shows called The Apprentice. The show consisted of a series of projects. For each project, a team decided on one project manager. Based on the performance of a team, each week one team would be safe and another would go to the boardroom where one contestant would be fired. The purpose of the show was to make it through all of the projects and ultimately win a position within The Trump Organization. Originally, the show featured everyday businessmen and businesswomen. However, in recent years, Trump created The Celebrity Apprentice. Unlike the original Apprentice, the celebrity version raised money for charities. This past season was number 14 within the The Apprentice series and was the seventh Celebrity Apprentice season.

Why do you think Trump switched from The Apprentice to The Celebrity Apprentice? The Celebrity Apprentice focuses on giving back to a charity. On this television show, the winning project manager receives a monetary reward for their specific cause. In addition, the overall winner will receive $250,000 for their charity. Not only does the television show aim to support different causes, but The Trump Organization additionally supports The Eric Trump Foundation for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, Girl Up, The New York City Police Foundation, Operation Smile, and The Police Athletic League. In 2011, Business Insider writer Noah Davis argued that even though Trump donates money, he only donates $250,000 per year to charity (Article can be found at: http://www.businessinsider.com/donald-trump-charity-25000-2011-4). So, do you think Trump’s switch was to prove he is a good philanthropist? Do you think it was just to gain more attention for his television show? Or, do you think Trump aligns closer to stakeholder theory?

 

Donald Trump is one of the most powerful businessmen and can be very intimidating. Trump expects the best quality work and if you fail or mess up, then you will be confronted and can expect to face consequences. Donald Trump and his empire are a perfect demonstration of power. I believe that with success comes power. Since Trump is a successful businessman, he has the power to create jobs, take away jobs, donate to philanthropic causes, etc. Not only does Donald Trump have power, but The Trump Organization has power as well. This organization has created some of the most popular hotel chains, golf courses, and television shows in the world. Due to this, the organization has major bargaining power over competitors and gains more recognition from consumers.  What role do you think power plays in the business world? What do you think creates a powerful company?

 

Featured Image: http://www.nbc.com/the-celebrity-apprentice/about

 

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6 thoughts on ““You’re Fired!””

  1. I think the switch the shows current celebrity format is an interesting one. I would venture to say that the decision stemmed out of ratings and the opportunity to pull in the fan base of new celebrities each season. According to an article on NPR the show started to suffer in its ratings by the time Trump switched to the celebrity format (http://www.npr.org/blogs/monkeysee/2014/12/31/374184494/the-apprentice-is-dead-please-stop-the-celebrity-apprentice). I think the philanthropy aspect is important for Trump as well. Do the funds raised through the show contribute to the reported $250,000 Trump donates? Do you think that people rather watch business men and women fight it out for a job or their favorite celebrities trying to make it in a business setting?

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  2. After each project is completed, the funds raised for that task go to the project manager’s charity. Thus, I do not believe any of the funds raised through the show contribute to the $250,000 rewarded to the overall winner. After reading the article on the NPR show, I found it very interesting when Linda Holmes states, “It wasn’t Who Can Sell More Lemonade? It was Whose Cell Phone Contacts Have The Highest Net Worth? (http://www.npr.org/blogs/monkeysee/2014/12/31/374184494/the-apprentice-is-dead-please-stop-the-celebrity-apprentice).” After Trump changed the show to The Celebrity Apprentice, I agree that the focus no longer revolved solely around business. Instead, it became a competition to see who had the best connections and could bring in enough money to win a project task. Personally, I preferred watching the original The Apprentice because I feel The Celebrity Apprentice was developed to help Trump appear as a better philanthropist. What do you think? Have you ever watched the show? If so, what were your opinions on The Apprentice?

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  3. I’ve never watched either show, but from the ideas introduced in this article, I am led to believe that Donald’s switch of the shows formatting had more to do with a desire to increase viewership and interest than out of a sense of philanthropic duty. If he wanted to donate more money to philanthropy, he could on his own. In my opinion, the celebrity apprentice show is an opportunity for him to combine our fascination with reality tv and monetize our interest in celebrities more than it was an opportunity for him to donate to a good cause.

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  4. To talk about Donald Trump for a bit as a person: his “success” is questionable. Donald Trump has filed for corporate bankruptcy four times, in 1991, 1992, 2004 and 2009. All of these bankruptcies were connected to over-leveraged casino and hotel properties in Atlantic City. In each of these instances, he has never personally been in debt and is very careful about distancing himself from his investments. With such a track record, it is astounding to think that bondholders continue to trust the Trump name.

    So to your point about the switch to the Celebrity Apprentice: I think it’s an ego play where he can appear like he is a philanthropic person in order to further his business endeavors. This, in turn, garners him more respect, and he can continue to build his empire of over-leveraged businesses. Trump’s argument is a good one though – his creditors should have known what they were getting themselves into.

    Fun fact about his ego: earlier this year, Trump filed a lawsuit against a Florida county for $100 million because he said its airport was intentionally flying planes over his mansion.

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  5. More on bankruptcy. Those were corporate bankruptcies, not personal ones. Still, the laws of our country are much more forgiving to corporate bankruptcies then they are to personal ones. As Robert Reich (former Secrtary of Labor” points out, the 1,000 people laid off at the Trump Casino that most recently filed:

    But workers who move to a place like Atlantic City for a job, invest in a home there, and build their skills, have no such protection. Jobs vanish, skills are suddenly irrelevant, and home values plummet.

    They’re stuck with the mess.

    Trump likes to Trumpet hard work, grit, and individual brilliance, right? But his ability to restructure debt through bankruptcy laws is a function of our laws, not his business acumen.

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