Meet The New Boss

Hour 1–2: 3.3.17: MCB Quantico: 0800–1200

In the module we look at a few of the books from Homer’s Odyssey and delve into the leadership of Odysseus and Telemachus. They Odyssey tells the story of Odysseus’ journey back home after going to Troy and his hardships at home. We examine Odysseus’ behavior as a leader of his men and how he deals with blame and responsibility. Athena accuses Zeus of being the cause behind Odysseus’ problems. Zeus lets Athena know that it is not him but Poseidon who has caused the drama. Instead of addressing blame who is a fault for Odysseus’ narrow return back to Ithaca. Is it because of what he did to Polyphemus, leaving the giant blind, being boastful. The first book talks about some gossip between Odysseus’ Wife (Penelope) and his son Telemachus. She tries to get out of marriage by unweaving and reweaving her robes during the day and night. Homer refers to Odysseus by a fed different characteristics wise, god like, steadfast heart Odysseus. This shows a little about Odysseus reputation the he had and the amount of respect that was given to him by his people. It amazes me how he was able to be absent from is people for 20 years and that the people didn’t go crazy. His steadfast hear allows Odyssues’ to return home. His god likeness helped his reputation and favor with the gods mostly Athena. Athena helps advocate and intervenes on Odysseus’ behalf. Athena also helps to strengthen Telemachus heart, which gave him courage to accomplish the task of sending him to Pylos and Sparta to have a conversation with “goodly-Nestor”

Through Homer’s use of lexicon we learn that Odysseus is a failure without directly calling him out. Is it Odysseus fault that his men died on their way back to Ithaca. In the beginning of the Odyssey we don’t discuss zeus, athena, penelope, telemachus and the rest of the characters. I think Odysseus Leadership is centered around how he tries to bring his people home and how he feels responsible for them. The Odyssey to me in a way describes a soldiers plight of returning home from war and how we must cope with the things we’ve seen at war. I’m wondering why Odysseus killed 108 unarmed guilty suitors. In the cave of Polyphemus, Odysseus actions in the cave put some of his men in danger and got them killed. Would his men rather leave the Cyclops’ milk yet Odysseus stayed back. When Odysseus taunted the Polyphemus and this caused his men to lose their lives, even though his men tried to calm him. This shows an instance were Odysseus could have exhibited better leadership qualities.

Here are a few of examples of Athena helping Telemachus with his leadership. Since Odyssues had been gone to war for almost 20 years his son was a young man and had plenty of suitors. He had not yet traveled yet or had experience with anything in his home. So Athena helped him out by placing courage into his heart to help him seek out suitors, leave home and travel, and seek the news of his fathers return home. Doing this could have risked Telemachus. Since Odysseus had left no one had called an assembly. If Telemachus called and assembly he rand the risk of no one showing up this could damage his credibility as a man and a leader. Here is the risk that Telemachus runs by calling the assembly. If he left his home he would run the risk of getting lost at sea as he was not experience in commanding a ship. And the men on the ship did not know him or respect him yet in the same capacity that they respected his father. After Telemachus the speech to the assembly that it mad suitors want Penelope more and they had incentive since the thrown had been empty for almost twenty years. This presented challenges for Telemcachus. His maid Eurycleia warned him that the suitors would plot against him as soon as he left.

Hour 3–6: 4.3.14: Big Bear Cafe: 0700–1400

The summary of the books”

Book 1

We are introduced to Zeus, Poseidon, and other leaders at the beginning. Homer gives Athena a major leadership role by having her confront Zeus on behalf of Obysseus’. We see the power of Athena’s leadership when she goes in disguise as a mentor to convince Zeus to bring Odysseus home. She also convinces Telemachos to go see Nestor and Meneloas learn more about Odysseus. By doing this Athena awakens Telemacho’s leadership skills. She tells him to hold a meeting and stand up to the suitors.

Book 2

This is the first time Telemachos takes steps to becoming a leader in his society. He didn’t have a chance to learn from his father about what it takes to be a good leader. By calling the meeting he took steps to become a leader even though he was overshadowed by Lord Aigyptios and Eurymachos he did his best to keep his composure and kept order of the meeting.

Book 9

Odysseus shows is leadership qualities or lack their of. His men wanted to stop at every island. Odysseus allows his men to make decisions instead of doing it for them, this leads to him having to save his men later on. Odysseus leaderships style is very relaxed when he needs to take an authoritative stance. If he had put his foot down it probably wouldn’t take an additional 10 years to get home. Meaning he would have never encountered the cyclops island and in turn Poseidon never wouldn’t gotten pissed. Odysseus is better on the battlefield than he is off when it comes to his leadership abilities. Odysseus thinks more short term than long term.

Book 10

in this book his men sabatoge him when it comes to them trying to get home. The lack of common sense is apparent in his men. Like why would they not want to go home. Also his men don’t take the personal initiative to step up morally. The idea is the these are grown men but they can’t think for themselves. they are looking for a leader to guid them and micromanaging everything that they do. They are like children and in need of constant supervision but Odysseus can’t give them that.

Book 11

Odysseus runs into Teiresias in the underworld, they are old war buddies from the Trojan War. a leader should be respected no matter what level they are leading at. The ability to respect to the chain of command is important.

Odysseus’ Return & Amnesty Interpretation:

So Odysseus finally gets back home and goes cray on all the suitors fighting them off of his women. This shows why he is seen as a powerful leader because he is strategic in his thinking and skills to get the job done. Even though he may not be a perfect leader, but he does command respect from his subordinates. Odysseus is a leader that he will work with you but if you get on his bad side he won’t like to lead you. An example is when he killed the maids who had slept with the suitors. Leadership is something that is in Odysseus blood line. After he killed the suitors, their father came to try and kill Odysseus. and then Odysseus’ dad Laertes killed the leader of the rebellion Eupeithes. We can see that even though the dad is an old man he can still hold his own. Athena is the behind the scenes leader of this story. Guiding and directing people were she want to go, which is leadership. The army definition of leadership is to provide, purpose, motivation and direction to accomplish the mission. Thats exactly what athena did. she helped activate Telemachos and his leadership skills and guided Odysseus home and helps bring him back to Ithaca. It shows that being a leader you don’t have to be in front all the time to get things accomplished.

This story discuss the importance of being an independent leader. for example when Telemachos goes to see Nestor in Plyos and then Meneloas in Sparta. He learning how to be independent because it was the first time Telemachos had traveled away from home. As leader it is important to have credibility amongst your ranks. If your soldiers lose faith in you or think that you are unqualified the will be hesitant to follow you. That’s why the voyage was so important in my opinion because it allowed Telemachos to build his credibility amongst his people.

Another behind the scenes leader is Penelope odysseus wife as she takes care of the affairs of Ithica during his absence and maintains her composure as she is chased down by suitors.

In rotc we discuss what makes a good leader and thats to be in the right place at the right time in the right uniform with the right attitude. I think Odyessus would have benefited from the motto. it would have helped him lead his soldiers. Also if his soldiers had loyalty to him and followed this motto they wouldn’t have sabotaged the mission of getting themselves back home.

Hour 7: 4.4.17; Douglas hall; 0940–1100

In class we discussed the themes that the module talked about

  • becoming a leader (telemachus) responsibility, accountability, motative, odysseus
  • activation: some one plants the seed in your mind that you could be a leader.
  • orientation:
  • integration: the process which you become to be recognized by the wider community. ‘

Mentor: Family friend of Odysseus, Athena dresses up as him to help motivate Telemachus.

Menalaysis is the king of Sparta at the time.

Kleos: good report/glory

What kind of leader to I want to be?