Essay about Was Ernest Shackelton a Good Leader?

1254 Words 6 Pages
Hilary Murray
Scott C. Hammond
Management 3800
8 June 2016
Was Ernest Shackleton a Good Leader?
The story of Ernest Shackleton is one that defies all odds. The fated quest of the Endurance and its crew is a lesson of perseverance, intuition, social skill, and adaptability. Shackleton’s integrity was challenged before the Endurance even left port in England with the start of World War I. The captain was willing to sacrifice men and ship for the war effort after months of preparation and planning. He was a man that was searching for greatness, while keeping things simple and calm. At the core of this born leader’s personality was optimism and with generosity combined with sympathy for the crew, he made everyone feel like they were
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When this became a real possibility, Shackleton asserted his command coolly and collectively and preserved the roles of each crewmember. Had he not taken control of the situation everyone’s position would have disintegrated into chaos leaving a fragmented team not working together. He knew when to mother his men and when to drive them forward. This also was a testament to his social skill.
Social skill is “Managing relationships to move people in desired directions. (This is made possible by) effectiveness in leading change, persuasiveness, extensive networking and expertise in building and leading teams.” (Goleman 5) Shackleton inspired his team to work hard by working alongside them and not exalting himself to being above menial tasks and uncomfortable situations. He scrubbed the floor with his men and when they were camped out on the pack ice, he managed to make sure that all of the leaders had the less warm wool sleeping bags while the rest of the crew had fur sleeping bags. He kept the men to a strict routine and monitored their morale, demoted a bully and always put the crew about the expedition. He had strong, tough empathy for the crew.
“Inspirational leaders empathize passionately-and realistically-with people, and they care intensely about the work employees do…This means giving people not necessarily what they want, but what they need to achieve their best.” (Goffee 81-82) Shackleton made the very difficult decision to

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