Saturday, October 1, 2011
Shackleton's Way is a short book detailing the extraordinary events of Ernest Shackleton who sought to explore the Antartic at the turn of the 19th century. Using the events of the tragic voyage the authors incorporate leadership principles in to their story.
Shackleton's ship the Endurance never made its final destination. It was trapped in the ice floes of the Antartic forcing the 28 men on board to travel across the frozen floating ice floes, onto the open ocean, and finally to a small whaling station. It is a powerful story of one man who in the most pressing circumstances brought all of his crew home alive.
The authors, Morrell and Capparell, do a fine job of listing out the principles of leadership that Shackleton displayed and placing them in a modern day context. Each chapter ends with these principles easily listed for future reference and followed by a real life business story that encapsulates these same principles.
I love this story of the Endurance and I loved how the authors extracted timeless principles of leadership from this historic achievement. Ernest, himself, is captured on the pages as the capable leader he is. I have read other accounts that Ernest Shackleton was a hard man, bent on explosive moments. This book did not capture that side of him and probably for the better. Although, this book is a historic account it seeks to mainly extract the principles of successful leadership.
I would encourage anyone who loves history and good books on leadership to pick this one up!