Examples Of Leadership In The Odyssey

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The Odyssey Leadership Essay
Many people like to think of themselves as passionate, courageous, and engaged individuals. However, in many cases that is thrown out the window when they are put under pressure. According to Katherine Bryant, “As a leader your every action has a consequence, make sure it is one you intend.” This is a statement all leaders should take into consideration. Was this taken into consideration by the main character in Homer’s Odyssey? A Greek warrior named Odysseus had shown us his flaws, those which had brought more struggles than success. Although Odysseus demonstrated a few ways of fine leadership through his moral responsibility, his selfishness and arrogance prove that he is an ineffective leader. Odysseus
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When Odysseus feels the need to taunt the cyclops, his men attempt to calm him down, but his excessive amount of pride and arrogance takes the lead. “Cyclops, if ever mortal man inquire how you were put to shame and blinded, tell him Odysseus, raider of cities took your eye: Laertes’ son, whose home’s on Ithaca” (Homer.9.416-419)! No leader should have an uncontrolled amount of pride. As Odysseus felt the need to taunt Polyphemus, he had put all of his men in danger. The strong pride from the relief of escaping this intense situation had made Odysseus give away his identity. This taunting had increased Polyphemus’ frustration, resulting in thrown boulders and a curse that will cause a strange trip back home. Odysseus and his men eventually land on the island of Aeolus. This is when Odysseus was shown irresponsible and again lacked communication towards his crewmates. “Within sight of home, and while Odysseus is sleeping, the men open the bag, thinking it contains gold and silver” (Homer.10.summary). A leader should most importantly communicate with his followers. Odysseus has done the exact opposite. He had known what was in the small bag. As the men have high curiosity, they opened the bag, blowing the ships back to Aeolus’ island. If Odysseus had been an effective leader, he would have been responsible and watched over the sailors. This would have brought no trouble because the men …show more content…
He proves that he has an influence on his men, and has the ability to inspire them. One of the greatest ways to see Odysseus’ multiple qualities is within Polyphemus’ cave. Across the bay from the island of the Cyclops, was a deserted island. They came upon a cave and spent days feasting on wine and goats. They had been observing the land where the cyclops had lived. The Cyclopes caught them in the act and was unhappy with their arrival. As a result, he began to chomp down on a few men. The Cyclops closes the entrance before Odysseus and his men have time to escape. In order to come to terms with the cyclops, Odysseus offers Polyphemus strong wine. Without any prior planning, Odysseus claims his name is “Nohbdy” when Polyphemus asks for his name. This plan came upon him when he had realized, that if he followed on with his men’s decision, they would have been unable to move the large stone in the way of their exit. Odysseus and his men will be left for dead. Tricking Polyphemus into drinking the wine, sharpening a huge tree trunk into a spear, and driving it into the eye of the cyclops shows not only slyness but strength and leadership. “Nohbdy, Nohbdy’s tricked me, Nohbdy’s ruined me” (Homer.9.317)! As Odysseus claimed his name to be “Nohbdy”, he prevented Polyphemus from being able to successfully call out for help. Polyphemus then cries out for help, using

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