Shackleton, Leadership, Challenges...
"…He led mentally and physically and gave a sense to the individual that he, the individual, was a most important part of the whole show."
G. Vibert Douglas, Geologist, Quest
"How they survived I dare not imagine. Determination and willpower."
Walter How - Sailmaker, Endurance
Key Lesson: Seek inspiration in enduring wisdom that has comforted or motivated you or others in times of crisis. It will get you through the most physically and emotionally draining times and help you to keep your perspective.
Shackleton sought inspiration in poetry and the Bible. What sources of inspiration do you tap into when facing a challenge?
Coming soon on Audible, Reagan's Journey - Lessons from a Remarkable Career!
The story of how a poor kid from nowhere coached himself to the top of five professions - sportscaster, Hollywood star, union leader, corporate ambassador / public speaker, and world leader. Set yourself on the road to your own remarkable career.
Shackleton and his team sailed through the Scotia Sea on their 800-mile journey from Elephant Island to South Georgia. This photo of the Scotia Sea gives you an idea of the challenges they faced on their 17-day trip.
Key Lesson: Go-for-broke risks become more acceptable as options narrow. Sometimes the potential rewards at the end of a daring venture justify the risk of suffering a spectacular failure.
Challenges like Shackleton's and Capt. Lovell's bring to mind 2 Cor 11:25, Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and day in the open sea.
"Capt. Lovell was the same age as Shackleton, forty-two, when he, too, faced the toughest trial of his life. ... With just fifteen minutes of power left for the life-support systems, the men were forced to abandon ship for the tiny lunar module, beginning an intense four-day struggle to survive. The module was designed to sustain only two men for forty-five hours. The Apollo 13 crew, under the direction of Mission Control in Houston, would have to turn it into a lifeboat that would accommodate three men for twice that time."
Capt. James A. Lovell Jr. has something in common with Shackleton, having been the leader of another famous "successful failure" as NASA dubbed the ill-fated Apollo 13 flight. The 1970 mission never landed on the moon as planned, but with the benefit of level-headed leadership, optimism, determination, and the hard work of all involved it returned to Earth without any loss of life, overcoming nearly impossible odds.
"People like Shackleton and myself are individuals who can take on challenges, challenges that might include the unexpected," Lovell says. "You go in knowing everything is not going to work, and if you can think of things that can go wrong you can 'think ahead.'"
The astronaut reflected on his ordeal in space during a trip to the Antarctic in January 2000 to visit the National Science Foundation's station at the South Pole. Beforehand, Capt. Lovell had read about Shackleton and what he calls his "miraculous leadership" he showed in rescuing the crew of the Endurance.
"I think he took the same attitude we took on Apollo 13. You have to look forward as long as there is a chance," Capt. Lovell says of the Antarctic explorer.