Invictus is one of the best movies I have seen that demonstrates the power of symbols in leadership. Morgan Freeman plays Nelson Mandela. The movie represents Mandela’s use of the country’s rugby team as a symbol of solidarity against apartheid. If you lead an organization and want to learn how powerful symbols can be to a culture, this is a must see movie. The movie is named after a poem that Mandela read to give him strength when he was imprisoned:
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.
–William Ernest Henley