Meet Jessica Ramella, the Winner of The Apprentice: One Championship Edition
After an intense season of participating in both physical and business challenges, Jessica Ramella has emerged victorious as the winner of The Apprentice: One Championship Edition. Filmed reality TV-style, the competition saw 16 candidates from around the world to participate in different challenges, with the winner receiving a job offer to work directly under One Championship chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong for a year.
Born and raised in Venezuela, Ramella left her country and difficult family situation behind at just 18 years old to create new opportunities for herself and embark on new journeys. Globetrotting from country to country, Ramella racked up a tremendous amount of experience in the corporate world with her most recent position as a sales director in Enterpryze, a cloud-based invoicing and accounting platform.
As the winner, Ramella be taken under Sityodtong's wing as his new protégé, and has also been named as the chief of staff of the martial arts promoter.
Tatler Singapore caught up with the winner of the inaugural season of The Apprentice: One Championship Edition and Sityodtong, her mentor and work supervisor, for their thoughts on the season.
Remember the metaphor of the match, and the bonfire, one is easy to light but dies equally fast, and the other [the bonfire] takes time and effort but once lit can last all night—be the bonfire.
How does it feel to win the competition against such strong competitors?
Jessica Ramella (JR) The competition was full of really talented, strong, sharp, and driven candidates, and I was grateful to have competed with them. So, when you find yourself amongst them, and then actually end up winning, it’s humbling. You know that this [competition] was also incredibly important for everyone around you and that you want this as much as the person next to you. It was also a great validation—it showed me that all the hard work, the sacrifices I’ve made, the endless hours of work that I have put in to develop my skillsets and expertise that I had to bring to the table and in the workplace was all worth it.
What was your mantra going into the competition?
JR My mantra for the competition is the same as the one I apply in life, and that is, to be consistently the best. I even wrote something as a reminder to myself, early into the competition, as I was beginning to get to know my fellow contestants: "Remember the metaphor of the match, and the bonfire, one is easy to light but dies equally fast, and the other [the bonfire] takes time and effort but once lit can last all night—be the bonfire." I wanted to be the best competitor, the best friend I can be to the people around me, and to be my best self. So, I would say it was this mindset that I had that carried me through and allowed me to keep moving forward.
I'm a huge believer in manifestation, so even entertaining the idea that I could get eliminated or that I should quit wasn’t worth it.
— Jessica Ramella
Was there a point you felt like giving up?
JR Funnily enough, no. I never once entertained the idea of giving up, nor did it cross my mind. It was certainly a gruelling experience but I was grateful to be able to compete in The Apprentice: One Championship Edition during a global pandemic. I was also incredibly mindful about how I thought and spoke because I would become my worst enemy if I psyched myself out. I'm a huge believer in manifestation, so even entertaining the idea that I could get eliminated or that I should quit wasn’t worth it.
Something in my gut told me that I would have been okay even though I had put a lot on the line for this competition. I left my job for this competition, and if I hadn’t won, I would only have 30 days to find a new employer or leave the country. I am no stranger to adversity, and I know I can rebuild my life here with my expertise and what I have learnt during my time on The Apprentice: One Championship Edition.
How did you feel when Chatri announced that the winner would also be named chief of staff?
JR When Chatri announced that the winner of the competition would not only be his apprentice but also his chief of staff, it ignited a fire in me. I'm competitive by nature and saw how this could catapult my career. I knew the learning curve would be steeper but that only encouraged me. I feel like there aren’t many people who, at 31 years old get to be in C-suite positions in a company like One Championship, especially under a CEO like Chatri. So for me, it just felt like the exact thing that I needed to achieve. As a female leader, I would also become a role model for young women.
What do you look forward to doing in your new role as chief of staff?
JR There are three things. The first is to show Chatri and Niharika [Singh, head of corporate strategy and tech at One Championship] that they've made the right decision, and to thank them through my work for taking a chance on me. The second is that I would like to add value to the company. I want to make sure that I can be a catalyst for the company's growth. Lastly, I want to ensure that the staff under me can feel happy and fulfilled in their jobs, as I believe that is key to getting a job done well.
In Conclusion with Chatri Sityodtong
"The entire season was filled with intense physical tasks, living up to the ‘toughest’ version of The Apprentice in history. Overall, it was a huge success. It was truly a pleasure to work with everyone in the inaugural season of The Apprentice: One Championship Edition. Each and every one of the global candidates deserved to be in the competition, and it has been an honour to share the screen with all of them. I think the competition worked out well, and we have a great winner in Jessica, who has proven herself the entire competition to be formidable in every aspect. And above all else, possess the PHD factor (poor, hungry, and determined) I value in a leader, aside from her innate creativity, people skills, and leadership capabilities.
[Moving forward, Jessica,] my new chief of staff at One Championship has to juggle multiple projects: whether it's sales, media partnerships, our products, as well as managing the critical priorities of the company. Jessica will have to be like my shadow and my proxy to handle the matters I am unable to tend to myself. At the same time, I am looking forward to the future of The Apprentice: One Championship Edition, how we can raise the stakes in the following seasons, which I’ll have to discuss with my team at One Championship, and see where we can go from here."
Related: 5 Minutes With... Chatri Sityodtong