The Great Gatsby written by Scott Fitzgerald is a representation of an infinite variance of ideas. For some, it is the image of the character that has been played by Leonardo DiCaprio while portraying the role of Jay Gatsby in the movie. The argument that has been presented in the essay is that the novel or the movie is more than just a symbolisation of the American Dream or an exquisite viewing pleasure. The greatness of The Great Gatsby has been applicable for all leaders over various organisations, whether the organisation is a business run by a family or any multinational organisation, dependent on a term “ambiguity”. It has to be noted that the slim novel by Scott Fitzgerald has transcended time and has become a part of the consciousness of the collective public (Zhang). The novel has helped in the creation of the central ideas pertaining to the culture and life of an American. To prove the same lets, ponder on the various interpretations that have been made for the term “Gatsby”, ranging from standing for the notion of being “extravagant” or “rich” to the methods in which the term is used for symbolising the American Dream. The truth is that The Great Gatsby is the very form of an insular experience. Over 55,000 words in the novel are free to be associated with anything that the reader and the viewer envision. It is a story for some that project upward mobility, while at the same time for some it is a projection of the best romantic doom after Romeo and Juliet while some consider it to be the chronicles of the times that have passed by. But in simple words, the story in The Great Gatsby is about an individual, whose desire to relieve and capture his past brings about the downfall of his present.
In simple terms, it can be stated that The Great Gatsby is an important part of the literature as the ambiguity enables the individuals to measure their life by using the novel in the form of a barometer. In other words, Gatsby remains important because its ambiguity enables people to use the novel as a barometer for measuring their lives. In any form of setting for an organisation, the interplay of the culture and the ambiguity is critical in nature. An individual does not forget their home even when they are working in any organisation. Thus, it is rational in nature that the acceptance of ambiguity is more natural in a manner for management and leadership qualities of an individual’s through complexity.
Although the concept of uncertainty has scared many people, especially individuals who are in a working environment, the lessons that can be taken from The Great Gatsby might decrease the level of fear in the individuals. Instead of using the concept of ambiguity for instilling fear, there is a possibility that the concept can be embraced to be a form of re-evaluation, interrogation, transformation and questioning of the assumptions. Application of the lessons pertaining to the leadership qualities from Jay Gatsby can enable leaders for having a better understanding and comprehending the collective and individual, joys, fears, frustrations and aspirations of their colleagues, stakeholders, co-workers and their customers (Dupré).
Studying the blurred nature of the organisational life and using the same as a form of guidance for the establishment and creation of culture has the potential ability of enabling individuals for tapping into the ideas. The insights that have otherwise been suppressed in the daily activities and tedium pertaining to an individual’s corporate experiences such as the endless numbers of PowerPoint presentations, numerous numbers of conferences and conference calls, and other tiring routines. Arguments in favour of the organised chaos and welcoming the unknown is an opposite notion to that of the traditional command and control form of leadership, which is used for guiding most of the individuals and the organisations. The factor that is said to hold back a majority of the leaders from being champions and practicing the concept of ambiguity in their leadership style is either their action of equating the unknown or not having proper answers for the weaknesses (Zhang). The commitment on the part of the leaders is viewed as a form of strategy and the individuals who are observed to be working according to the plan and enacting the same have always been considered to be successful in nature. The popular culture about the portrayal of the leaders and the skills pertaining to leadership promotes the assertiveness of self-confidence and the ability of the leader to make decisions based on their “guts” as the major factors that are responsible for the creation of the leaders, who are successful and great in nature.
It is also to be understood that the individuals are found to be at their creative best when they have opened themselves up to the aspects of deep thinking, reflection and flow. Leonardo DiCaprio, who is being considered to be the embodiment of the character Jay Gatsby from the novel The Great Gatsby and an American icon, states that the concept of ambiguity is a factor that he does responds to in real life situations (Li and Zheng). He likes the complex nature of the concept and its application in his practical life. Even when in the movie the characters are being brought to life through the intricate and methodical acting of the various actors, Gatsby has been found to be elusive in nature while being adaptable. The main reason behind such a nature of the character of Gatsby can be attributed to the character’s affinity and concern for ambiguity, which is found to be in force now as much as it was initially in 1925. The novel and the movie have provided the readers and the viewers respectively with a blank canvas. This blank canvas can be filled up by the creation and re-creation of the view of the world that an individual has.
Be it from the movie or from the novel, the character of Jay Gatsby has been filled with love and loss of love. But at the same time there are some truths pertaining to the qualities of a dynamic leader, which can be applied not only during the era in which the story is set, but also in modern time’s business scenario. Some of the characteristics of a leader as that can be found from Jay Gatsby are as follows:
Communication: Because of the impeccable skills of communication, Jay Gatsby has the ability of conveying his confidence, enthusiasm and trustworthiness so as to engage his entire audience, no matter the size. He believed in his stories in such a manner that other also believed in his stories.
Adaptability: Jay Gatsby has the ability of reinventing and repositioning himself. This is a very advantageous skill for any individual. It can be observed that Jay had a poor beginning but his adaptability helped him in becoming a self-made millionaire.
Self-Awareness: The only skill of a leader that Jay lacked was that of being self-aware. He had the ability to communicate and establish and maintain his brand, but he never had the power to realise the reality in which he existed. Without a proper understanding of the reality any leader is helpless and cannot achieve greatness in the long run.
The ideas that the novel and the movie The Great Gatsby has provided have aided individuals in sorting through the past nine decades of time. These very ideas as proposed in the novel are the actual and necessary core beliefs that make the people run and progress and grow. At some point in time or the other, every individual has the characteristic of being a dreamer or obsessive in nature, even being conscious of one’s status, lovesick, enemies, friends and even voyeurs among the wide array of ideas and the moments that helps in making up the life of an individual. Embracing the complexity and the ambiguity might not be any idea about leadership of the yesteryears. Rather, they two notions of complexity and ambiguity could help to become a new model and practice, which helps the leaders and various other individuals to navigate through times and situations that are challenging in nature.
Dupré, Mhairi. "The Great Gatsby". Nature 440.7087 (2006): 1086-1086. Web.
Li, Qin and Lili Zheng. "The Greatness Of Gatsby In The Great Gatsby". ALS 03.02 (2015): 52-57. Web.
Zhang, Mingquan. "The Technological Diegesis In The Great Gatsby". English Language Teaching 1.2 (2008): n. pag. Web.