In analyzing 12 Angry Men the first theory that came to mind is the Universal Theory of Leadership. The theory is defined as the belief that certain personal characteristics and skills contribute to leadership effectiveness in many situations. This shows true with Juror #8. Juror #8 was the architect who emerged as a real effective leader. The architect showed self-confidence and assertiveness. He convinced the jury that once all thought the young man was guilty to believing he was innocent due to the lack of proof and questionable assumptions.
He showed himself as respectable, knowledgeable, and authentic. The architect rose question as to whether or not the circumstances could be possible by re-enacting the situation. He challenged the process completely by doing this. He was also a leader of integrity because he was loyal to rational principles, practiced what he preached, and did this regardless of the social pressure from fellow jurors’. With these characteristic traits the architect proves to be an charismatic and effective leader. I think overall the conflict in 12 Angry Men was constructive.
At first, I didn’t see how they were going to come up with a solution. Since the architect was the one vote for not guilty, he was the first to open up the important issue which led to the conflict. Conflict was constructive due to the fact of the results in solutions. The twelve men were able to eventually unanimously agree on not guilty. The further conflict went on the more increase of involvement of individuals in issues of importance to them came out and developed authentic communication. The conflict between these men also ended up helping Juror #3, the angry father.
Conflict served as a release to pent up emotion, anxiety, and stress for the angry father. I believe the individuals a part of the jury grew personally from this experience. So, overall conflict between the jury in 12 Angry Men was constructive. Juror #1, The Foreman, was the first to act as a leader. In the beginning he tried to show leadership by taking charge. He started this by getting the meeting going and telling people where to sit. He also took vote of whether members of the jury thought the young boy was guilty or not.
In the end he didn’t prove to be the real effective leader, however; I think he still held position power. To a certain degree, The Foreman held legitimate power because he was granted this power by the group of jurors. He was looked at to hold the meeting and keep it going. He was in charge of the running of the meeting and the process. 12 Angry Men portrays group decision making and negotiation. It illustrates how we can deal with conflict as a group. Too much or too little conflict is never good.
Although the jury had a difficult time coming to a unanimous decision I think they had the right amount of conflict. The conflict they had was just enough to still be constructive and not have negative effects on the outcome or group of jurors. Because of this conflict, trust and conflict resolution the jury team was able to be more effective. If it wasn’t for this conflict I don’t think there would have been a practical resolution. Although in the beginning they were not all in agreement they had a shared goal and objective; to find if the man was guilty or not.
No matter what reasons they had or what would be waiting for them after they came to an agreement they were there for one thing. With the charisma from the architect who emerged has a true leader the group of jurors was able to effectively work it out. They used different approaches to problem solving and decision making. By using experimentation they were able to officially rule out the situation the old man said he heard and then the idea that the women saw from across the street. With well managed conflict and good leadership that emerged they were able to be an effective team.