Last Saturday, I watched the movie The Monuments Men accidentally. I was under the impression that I had booked for The Wolf of Wall Street and didn’t realize till I walked into the cinema hall and after the movie started, that I had been given tickets to The Monuments Men. I’m glad I made a choice to watch it not so much for the movie but in learning about the Monuments Men.
This movie is based on the true story of the greatest treasure hunt in history, the film is an action drama focusing on an unlikely World War II platoon, tasked by FDR with going into Germany to rescue artistic masterpieces from Nazi thieves and returning them to their rightful owners. In the last year of the war, they tracked, located, and in the years that followed returned more than five million artistic and cultural items stolen by Hitler and the Nazis. But as the Monuments Men, as they were called, found themselves in a race against time to avoid the destruction of 1000 years of culture, they would risk their lives to protect and defend mankind’s greatest achievements.
There is a scene in the movie towards the end where George Stout, given the name of Frank Stokes played by George Clooney is asked whether it was worth the life of a man in his team to save the Madonna of Bruges and he says yes. He is also asked do you think 30 years down the line people will still remember that a man gave up his life to save this piece of art………..?
As that dialogue was going on, it struck me that I have been to so many museums but had never viewed any art from the point of view of someone having risked their life or given up their life to save a particular piece of art. Until yesterday, I was not aware about the history of the Monuments Men and their unprecedented effort in protecting and securing various pieces of art despite extraordinary efforts.
Let’s examine our daily lives….
- How many times in day-to-day life have you as a leader in an organization or even as a human being taken time and effort to understand the story of your team or coworkers ?
- Have you challenged yourself not to judge someone by their looks or their behaviors?
- Have you seemed to explore why people behave the way they do ?
- In your talent management process
→ Have you found out what drives a candidate to do what they do best?
→ How have they acted during times of pressure and crisis?
→ How did they demonstrate Emotional Balance during periods of adversities?
→ What are the ways they have shown their ability in dealing with new projects or things beyond their comfort zone?
- Are you willing to challenge yourself on something in your daily life that you have taken for granted or attended to within your comfort zone?
During my readings this week, I came across this Ted Video by Roselinde Torres, who has asked three key questions in determining what makes a great leader
Where Are You Looking To Anticipate Change ?What is the diversity measure of your network ?Are you courageous enough to abandon the past ?
The Monuments Men went beyond their comfort zone and risked their lives to retrieve art that was stolen. Whilst our acts may not be that monumental, what we can seek to do with the world we are in is to ask
♠ How can I influence someone’s life positively ?
♠ Who will I choose to engage with?
♠ Am I willing to choose the unknowing to create the pathway to the unknown possibilities of the future?
♠ Am I willing to look at things from a fresh perspective ?
We seek to create our own lives by the choices we make and the chances we take. Are you ready to carve your pathway?
Isn’t leadership about seeing the positive potential in others, building trust and rapport, being genuinely interested in others, willingness and drive to help others, arousing enthusiasm among people and championing a common vision?
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