Schindler's List by Thomas Keneally Essay

517 Words 3 Pages
Schindler's List by Thomas Keneally

Thomas Keneally has accomplished his goal with Schindler’s List. It beautifully and completely realizes the honest story of a man who was an astounding leader in every respect. This book captures with accuracy and poignancy a part of history that every member of every society must know about and never forget, and to do it in novel form is a sign of Keneally’s extraordinary ingenuity. To begin with, Oskar Schindler’s embodiment of the leadership characteristics we have discussed in class is evident. Charisma, perhaps our most highly discussed quality, is his trademark. Schindler cleverly finds ways to relate to the SS officers and soldiers not only through bribes of high class gifts, but through
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Perhaps we could compare him to another leader, President William Jefferson Clinton, in his exemplification of charisma. Another trait crucial to Schindler’s leadership is the ability to shrewdly harness the skills of others. The most obvious example of this ability is his employment of the Jewish accountant Itzhak Stern. Despite the fact that Stern is Jew, Schindler knows he is the best man to help run his business and keep track of his finances and contacts. He immediately recognizes Stern’s ability and puts his trust in him. Likewise, Schindler’s utilization of Poldek Pfefferberg to connect him to the black market is an equally important union. His trust in Pfefferberg also demonstrates his strong character judgment. Moreover, another apparent manifestation of this quality is Schindler’s use of the Jews in his factory. Besides the fact that they were inexpensive, he knew that they would be dependable and efficient. Finally, our leader develops an ongoing partnership with the evil Hauptsturmfuhrer Amon Goeth to get what he needs, his workers. We could similarly compare Schindler’s recognition of trustworthy people and sense of opportunity in taking advantage of the skills of others to leaders we have discussed in class like Ross Perot. Perhaps most importantly, compassion is what Schindler may be most remembered for. Despite his image as a shrewd, opportunistic businessman, the entrepreneur

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