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Chatri On Hiring Jessica, His Expectations, And Future Of ‘Apprentice’

ONE Championship | June 21, 2021 |

When ONE Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong first met the 16 global candidates applying for the job as his “Apprentice,” he had some serious decision-making ahead of him.

Standing before him was a group of determined entrepreneurs and businesspeople from all over the world, each with their own strengths and weaknesses, and each with their own reasons for wanting to learn under the seasoned leader.

After 13 weeks of grueling physical challenges and business tasks, Chatri ultimately chose Jessica Ramella to be his Chief Of Staff and has since been preparing the Venezuelan for her new role at ONE Championship.

Before Jessica hits the ground running, Chatri reveals why he picked her, what’s in store for her, and whether viewers can expect a second season of “The Apprentice: ONE Championship Edition.”

Going Off A Hunch

Scenes from Episode 11 of "The Apprentice: ONE Championship Edition"

Although it took 13 weeks for Chatri to determine which candidate would be “The One,” Co-Advisor Niharika Singh had a feeling right away that Jessica would stand out.

On the very first day of production, Niharika came up to me and said, ‘Jessica is going to win the whole show. She has everything – EQ, IQ, her personality,’” Chatri recalls.

For his part, ONE’s Chairman and CEO had reservations. Not because he didn’t see Jessica as a leading contender, but because he thought four of the other candidates were equally strong with their business skill sets.

I knew Jessica was definitely one of the favorites early on, but I also thought Irina [Chadsey] was one of the favorites. Paulina [Purnomowati] was one of the favorites. Louie [Sangalang] was one of the favorites, and Monica [Millington], too,” Chatri says.

In the end, Niharika’s hunch was spot-on, as Jessica outworked the 15 other candidates to win the one-year, US$250,000 contract as ONE’s Chief Of Staff. And ultimately, Chatri chose Jessica based on a few key factors.

Jessica has very high IQ, very high EQ, a high PhD factor – poor, hungry, determined. She has a lot of fire in her belly to do something very big in her life, just like everyone else in ONE. That’s something I recognized very quickly,” he says.

She also has the creativity, she has the people skills, she has a natural leadership ability as well. She’s a very well-balanced leader who has truly world-class potential.”

That potential will now be measured and tested at ONE’s corporate headquarters in Singapore.

Big Expectations

Scenes from The Apprentice: ONE Championship Edition's season finale!

In Episode 1, Chatri made it clear that he wouldn’t tolerate mediocre efforts from any of the 16 global candidates. And as the show unfolded, he made that sentiment even more evident, as he continuously sent candidates home for not performing to ONE’s standards.

The cameras may have stopped rolling, but according to Chatri, this is where the even bigger test begins for Jessica.

I’ve always said this in our company meetings, but the path to greatness involves dreams, purpose, and passion. It also involves sacrifice and suffering for those dreams, purpose, and passion. It’s one thing to do it for eight weeks, or 10 weeks, or 13 weeks on the show, but it’s another thing to do it every day of your life,” he says.

In the quest to unleash your greatness, in the quest to push our mission of unleashing real-life superheroes, time will tell, as time always does. Time will tell us everything about whether Jessica really wants to unleash her greatness in life or not. 

But this was the toughest ‘Apprentice’ in history. This will be the toughest job she’s ever had. And I am definitely going to be the toughest boss she’s ever had in terms of standards of excellence, detail, orientation, my expectations, analytical thinking – everything.”

Moreover, Chatri already has a few projects planned for Jessica as she settles into her new role.

The Chief Of Staff has to juggle multiple projects, the most important priorities of the company. Jessica has to be my shadow in terms that if I can’t attend a meeting, she will attend the meeting. Jessica has to be a mini-me,” the Chairman and CEO says.

“Also, the Chief Of Staff typically works on multiple projects across the company for me in addition to shadowing me, essentially giving me leverage as the CEO of ONE. And so she’ll be juggling multiple projects whether it’s Product, whether it’s Sales, or Media Partnerships.”

‘The Apprentice: ONE Championship Edition’ Season 2?

The Apprentice Episode 8 Elimination 4 scaled.jpg

Now that Chatri has found “The One,” he’s already planning future seasons of “The Apprentice: ONE Championship Edition.” And he’s promising viewers that the follow-up will bring new challenges and plots.

When we do Season 2 of ‘The Apprentice,’ it’ll have an entirely different twist and a different flavor from Season 1,” he says.

“Our ethos at ONE Championship is that we are always looking for ways to learn, grow, evolve, and improve. With that spirit, the show will be bigger, better, and badder than Season 1.”

ONE is also open to hosting other TV show franchises, which could elevate an already dramatic and entertaining hiring process for the world’s largest mixed martial arts organization.

“We definitely have explored different content stacks from around the world, where we could marry the ONE Championship IP or ONE Esports IP into the show,” Chatri says.