StarTrek Voyage Season 2 – Episode 2: ¨Initiations¨
In this episode and in several others in this series … I am reminded of the parable of the lost sheep in the bible. —- A good shepard will leave 99 sheep to look of one missing sheep, sometimes even putting those 99 in harm´s way in the process. Captain Janeway does just that in this episode and in other episodes as she won´t leave any of her people behind who are captured, sick, missing or separated from the crew inexplicably. The good shepard thus inspires loyalty in the team and fosters teamwork because all the other 99 sheep are confident that if it were them that were in this situation, their leader won´t leave any stone unturned in trying to get them. This act sends one simple message – ¨Everyone of you is an important part of this journey/endeavour/venture, I will go out of my way and do everything in my power to keep you safe¨
A leader NEVER compromises his principles – s/he will not sacrifice others to save himself.
And from Commander Chakotay himself ¨A man does not own land, he doesn´t own anything except the courage and loyalty in his heart¨ – wow! and here I thought we owned land, houses, cars and corporate empires! and what is that in the heart? courage and loyalty?
In light of the previous quote … we have our next tenet – a leader´s message/appeal is goes to the heart and spirit – to the potential for greatness within us all. That message could be verbal but more importantly the message is by behaviour – there is something the leader DOES that make even his enemy buy into his value system. In this episode, Commander Chakotay´s refusal to kill innocent children, risk his life to save that which he cares about and even give himself up as a sacrifice (at great risk) so someone can gain something they hold dear is a message that is louder than anything any orator could say.