Shackleton’s Expedition Essay

Shackleton’s Expedition Essay

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In 1914, a great leader began a great expedition, unbeknownst to him that instead of being known as great explorers, they would be known as some of the greatest survivors. This man was Sir Ernest Shackelton and he was determined to be the first to cross the Antarctic. Little did he know, his biggest challenge would end up being his ability to lead his team to survival. He also had no idea that their tale of strength, determination, and courage to survive would influence people well into the 21st century, and the book detailing their stories would be used as a model of leadership. As our group read this book, it was evident that Shackleton was a truly motivated and successful leader as we have come to understand one to be. His ability to successfully lead a team played a significant role in their survival.
In 1915, while amidst their expedition, the ship, Endurance, become lodged in a pack of ice. They tried to wait it out, through a winter of darkness, and even though the Endurance was drifting northward, the ice was too much for the Endurance to withstand. The ice broke the Endurance in half, forcing the dogs and crew off the ship. They would end up spending months trying to find land.
The Endurance party looked death in the face several times yet beating the odds, they survived. While some of their success can be contributed to luck and experience, Shakleton’s leadership is credited with being the factor that saved their lives. Below are the leadership traits that Shackleton exhibited throughout their journey.

Strong Decision Maker
We see initial leadership within Shackleton in his ability to make decisions. With a voyage like this, the decisions made would determine the likelihood of success. From the purchase ...


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...nly able to think about themselves not about what is best for the team. Shackleton was able to disregard selfish thoughts and with a little luck, good leadership, and strategic thinking his team was led to rescue.



Works Cited

Avolio, B. J. (2007, Jan 1). Promoting more Integrative Strategies for Leadership Theory Building. American Psychologist, pp. 25-33.
Crosby, B. B. (2005). Leadership for the Common Good. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Kellerman, B. (2004). Bad Leadership: What it is, How it Happens, Why it Matters. Boston, Massachusetts: Harvard Business Press.
Kirkpatrick, S. A., & Locke, E. A. (2001). Leadership: Do traits Matter? Academy of Management Executive,5,, 48-60.
Lansing, A. (1999). Endurance: shakelton's incredible voyage. New York: Basic Books.
Lipman-Blumen, J. (2005). The Allure of Toxic Leaders. New York, New York: Oxford University Press.

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