Hired 101: Lessons From A Trump Apprentice

The "reality": Getting hired for a business TV show is no different than doing so for anything else

"You're fired!" Yes, this was my fate in Week 8 of my run as a job candidate on The Apprentice. But I was happy to help my "brother" Randal win it all.

The casting directors from The Apprentice cast in groups of about ten at a time.  So, immediately, I could see that I would need to ensure that whatever I said would “standout” because there were so many people at the table.  The key, however, was not standing out for the wrong reasons, which many people did.  The first question asked, which also happens to be the most difficult question for most people, was as follows: “Quickly, in a couple of sentences, tell me about yourself.”  Because the casting was in Washington, DC and I was a former Miss District of Columbia, I decided to use that to my advantage.  Here is what I said:  “My name is Marshawn Evans.  I’m a former Miss America runner-up, talent and interview winner, and also a Georgetown University trained lawyer (I had a provisional license to practice law in DC) that runs a national communications consulting company working with entertainers and media personalities.”  I could have simply said I’m a lawyer and entrepreneur.  But, there is no explicit value communicated in the latter.  Make your value known clearly and concisely.

Number Three: Adapt as Necessary. Most people do not know that I actually went through the majority of the casting process interviewing for the Martha Stewart version of The Apprentice…remember that?  She was only around for one season.  I showed up that day fully intending to interview for Trump’s show, but the line for Martha was shorter!  I had on high heels, and it was a cold February day, so I followed the still voice in my spirit that said get in the other line, and get in it now.

Weeks later, after going through five rounds of interviews, background checks and video diaries, I received an invitation via phone to attend the final round of interviews in Los Angeles.  The only catch was that the producers felt my personality was more “suited” for Trump’s show.  I wasn’t sure if that was compliment or not!  However, I learned the critical importance of adaptability and trusting your God-given intuition.  It has helped me in every area of my personal and professional life.  For anyone looking to go to the next level, get hired, grow business, or get on a television show, being flexible and willing to adjust is key.  The truth is that most people are overly rigid, unteachable, and unwilling to go-with-the-flow.  The “flow” might be what you have been waiting for, even though it does not look like the open door you expected.

For additional insight on how to prepare for any career opportunity, become a stronger communicator, and how to brand your way to the top, sign-up for my free ME Unlimited® e-Newsletter featuring daily “Motivate ME” affirmations and reinvention advice at www.marshawnevans.com, and you can follow me on Twitter for quick tips.

What strategies have worked for you in getting the job of your dreams?  If you’ve been fired, what mistakes have you made?  What do’s and don’ts can you share with our online community of readers.  As always, I look forward to hearing from you.

Reinvention Strategist™ Marshawn Evans is a former Miss America beauty queen turned Donald Trump Apprentice, turned Georgetown University trained sports & entertainment lawyer who equips the motivated to live without limits.  She is Founder of ME Unlimited, a management consulting and performance strategy firm, and author of the bestselling book, SKIRTS in the Boardroom: A Woman’s Survival Guide to Success in Business & Life.  Subscribe to her FREE empowerment e-newsletter at www.marshawnevans.com.  Connect with her on Twitter and Facebook.

Pages: 1 2

  • This is an excellent article. I know several people who are looking for employment and I will be passing this information on to them.

  • Truly the best season of the Apprentice. I’m curious to know what people think could be possible reasons for the high unemployment in the black community.

    Ozzie Saunds

  • Wisdom Emmanuel

    Hi marshawn, let me first of all start by saying a trillion thanks to you for the eye opening tutorial you gave us @ the platform about business branding. I started a research after the platform & i’ve discovered that the reason why most businesses aren’t doing well is due to lack of personality trait which is the effect of branding to a business. I have also come to understand that people pay more for a product that is branded because it gives them a sense of confidence. I am presently an employee with a fashion firm & i’m planing to start my brand by june 2011. I will update you when it’s done. Thanks for inspiring me, God bless you.

  • Anuoluwapo Ashimi

    Hi Marshawn this is an excellent write up i love the strategic communication part this is right information at the right time. Thanks again 4 inspiring me just like u did at Platform.God bless u

  • Ngozi Dan. Okafor

    ME, Thanks for a job well done at the platform on saturday, 1st May, 2010 in Lagos Nigeria.

  • Andrea

    Thank you for the encouragement!! I am a 39-year-old woman who truly appreciate your words of wisdom and will apply it in my life. I am finishing my Masters in August and have started sending out my resume looking for my “dream job”. I will definitely market myself as the only candidate that is capable of doing the job!!

  • enyia@shaw.ca

    Very good article.

  • Ekelia

    i certaintly love this.

  • Marshawn,
    Firstly I think that season of apprentice was the absolute best show of strategy, innovation and business competence . I  have followed  Dr. Pinkett since then and wondered what, if anything had happen to you. I want to thank you for this article. It has truly enlightened me and will become part of a my campaign to create a brand for myself. 

  • facebooklikes

    I will right away grab your rss as I can not to find your e-mail subscription hyperlink or newsletter service. Do you’ve any? Kindly allow me know in order that I could subscribe. Thanks.

  • kurageart,artistic animation and digital art

    of course like your website but you need to check the spelling on quite a few of your posts. A number of them are rife with spelling issues and I find it very troublesome to inform the truth then again I will definitely come back again.