Invictus - Path Goal Theory

Topics: 1995 Rugby World Cup, South Africa, South Africa national rugby union team Pages: 6 (2438 words) Published: March 26, 2012
“Invictus” – Individual paper

“Invictus”, is a powerful movie representing what Nelson Mandela taking the office as the first black president of South Africa and set to accomplish great things. Nelson Mandela was the founder and lead of the African National Congress and spent 27 years in prison on charges for sabotage against the white military and government to end apartheid. The movie starts with his release from prison on February 11, 1990 greeted by the black population eager to fight while the white population was expecting the worse from it. The environment factors changed dramatically for Nelson and he found himself ready to forgive those that imprisoned him and call them comrades. His amazing strength of character can be recognized in the movie and the Path-Goal Theory’s leadership behaviors can be found along with them. Path Goal Theory

Path-Goal Theory argued that subordinates’ motivation, satisfaction and work performance are dependent on the leadership style chosen by their superior. Moreover, a person may perform these by adopting a certain leadership style, based on the situation. I’ve picked Nelson Mandela as the leader. Mandela has a very difficult task of uniting a country that has been for so long divided and full of hatreds. After his release the black people started riots and Mandela addressed them as a directive leader to the black crowd in Durban, on February 25, 1990 asking to lay down the arms and end the war, saying “My message to those involved in this battle of brother against brother is this: take your guns, your knives, and your pangas and throw them into the sea. Close down the death factories. End this war now!” Mandela speaks clearly about what’s required of South Africa and give them directions to accomplish it. He realized that his embattled country needs to unite efforts regarding of race to be able to build a future together. Once a fighter against the regime, he realizes now that only peace and unified efforts can lead to progress and leaving peacefully together. He sets directives as such. Later on, when he won the presidential elections and he is sworn as a president on May 10, 1994 and he wants the best for his country, to stop the suffering and suppression of his people, he asks for building a new country together. “We must act together as a united people, for national reconciliation, for nation building, for the birth of a new world…Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another and suffer the indignity of being the skunk of the world.” His message is directive, strong and clear. He had an amazing ability to change depending on the environment contingency factors. On the first day to take office the President Mandela talks to the staff of the former president when he sees them packing and assuming that they’ll get fired from their positions and they are no longer needed. He becomes a supportive leader and asks for their help. He combines it with directive leadership asking them to do their work to their best abilities. “If you want to leave that’s your right; that you can’t work with your new government leave but if you pack because your language, color or you work for the previous president disqualifies you have no fear. The past is the past. We look into future and we want your help. If you want to stay you’ll do your country a huge favor. Best abilities and a good heart. I promise to do the same. Our country will be shining”. This shows Mandela strong support and commitment for understanding and unifying efforts among white and blacks. Addressing to a white majority with kind words and pledge and asking for help proves one more time Mandela’s ability to change his leadership style according to the situation and change. Mandela’s commitment to a supportive leader surface again when he assigns four white men to the security team and talk to the head of the security...
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