1. Who set the focus and what was it? Why do yousay so?Though in form “12 angry men” was acourtroom drama where 12 jurors were fighting to come to a common decisionagainst a boy but in purpose it’s a crash course in those passages of theConstitution that promise defendants a fair trial.Henry Fonda, the 8th juryin the panel, set the focus. Apart from him, the rest of the jurors agreed thatthe boy was guilty. Only Henry thought that they should invest some time analyzingthe issue from various angles. In a little over an hour, every juror is definedin terms of his personality, background, occupation, prejudices and emotionaltilts.
Henry was the only person who was determined to discuss the case profoundly.Right from the beginning, ?Henry Fonda’s character tried to walk in the boysshoes- what it must have been liked to live in a slum and grow up in a violentenvironment. Instead of rushing to potentially prejudiced judgement, he triedto see things from the boy’s perspective. Henry never forced anyone to vote theboy “not guilty”, rather he pointed out each possibility which made otherjuries to shift votes and think about the case from various angles.
Henry’scharacter was a combination of strong leadership, sturdy self-belief andassertive thinking. 2. What are the leadershipcompetencies that created an impression on you or your team? Explain with abrief description and justify?Taking a stand: This leadership quality was displayed by Henry Fonda(Juror 8) when he stood against all the other jurors to portray for his ownopinion. Most of the other jurors were under the influence of other jurors andpreliminary case facts, and were reluctant to stand for what they thought wasright. For ex: Juror 9 was under the influence of other jurors and when he sawJuror 8 taking a stand for what he felt right he got motivated enough tosupport him. Juror 8 was forced to change his decision under many instances buthe stood by his decision because he was not convinced by the facts presented byother jurors and the court.
Seeing the larger picture: Most of the jurors came to thedecisions mainly because they didn’t want to waste any time discussing over thematter. For ex. Juror 7, wanted to just get over the meeting so that he couldgo to the ball game. He didn’t even care for the accused and that his decisioncould have put him under death penalty. Whereas, Juror 8 was looking at thelarger picture and held himself accountable for the pending decision. He tookthe decision on his own conscience and was willing to wait until he wasconvinced that the accused was really the culprit.
So, he decided to go thedifficult path by not only standing against all the 11 other jurors but alsochanging their decision without disrespecting their opinions. Nudging others: Even if you take a stand, it is impossible to change adecision if you cannot make the others believe. Juror 8 realized this, hence heused subtle techniques to nudge others. He tried to change other’s decisions byconstantly interacting with them and counter them with logic and facts. He knewthat the other jurors had already made a decision and it is very difficult tochange a person’s decision because of the resisting nature.
Hence, he slowlybut surely made each other change their decision one by one by proving themwhat was right even though he had to take a lot of negative comments from theothers. Respecting other’s opinion: Even though juror 8 was against allthe other jurors, he was not stubborn and was willing to listen to all theothers if they could make him change his decision. He respected all the otherjurors and he even believed that all the other jurors might have been rightfrom the beginning. He gave all of them a chance to prove him wrong so that hecould change his decision. Focusing on important discussions: There was a lot of chaos at the juryroom because everyone wanted to prove himself right. Even though Juror 8 wasagainst all the other jurors, he gave importance to the important discussions.For ex. when some juror presented the fact involving the “woman across therailway line” he was interested in his fact and gave huge importance to it eventhough that fact was against could have changed his stand.
3. Elaborate on how the changewas led by Henry Fond keeping the steps of change management in mind (Applyonly relevant steps)Step 1: Create UrgencyHenry Fonda created a situation ofurgency by appealing to the entire jury of 12 men to deliberate on thepossibility of the accused being non-guilty of the murder at least for an hour.He himself wasn’t sure if the accused was guilty or not but he didn’t want anyman to get punished for something he hasn’t committed. Eventually, he wassuccessful at changing some jurors’ opinion about the boy by highlighting thetouch upbringing he had.Step 2: Form a Powerful CoalitionHenry Fonda convinced the entire juryto at least ponder over the situation properly before unanimously agreeing on averdict. After the jury discussed a few facets of the murder’s evidences, hetook a risk by calling in for another round of votes and convincing people ifout of those 11 other jurors, if nobody feels the accused could be non-guilty,he would change his vote else if even one feels he is non-guilty, there wouldbe further deliberation. The outcome of the voting was what he wished for asone of the jurors changed sides to non-guilty, so his attempt paid off.Step 3: Create a Vision for ChangeHenry Fonda’s attempt to convince thejury to deliberate on the facts and evidences of the case for at least an hourbefore concluding the verdict that lead to an interesting and unexpected turnof events which set a tone for the entire movie.
He tried convincing the jurorsto ponder over the possibility, however improbable it might be, of the boysurrounded by many coincidences which point at him being guilty but may nothave executed the murder of his father.Step 4: Remove ObstaclesHenry Fonda was not sure whether theboy was responsible for the murder of his father which is why he kept repeatingthe line ‘I don’t know, I’m not sure, it’s possible he is non-guilty’. Heconvinces others to deliberate upon alternate outcomes that had not been consideredbefore. This lead to disapproving certain scenarios such as the statement madeby the old man of going near the stairs within 15 mins and witnessing the buyrunning out of the door. Henry Fonda convinced everyone that even a uniquelooking switchblade like the one purchased by the boy could have be purchasedby anyone coincidently.Step 5: Create Short-Term WinsHenry Fonda made sure that there is around of voting after discussing an important fact or evidence surrounding thecase.
This gave him a sense of confidence that he is leading the jury tobelieve what he believes in after every discussion. His method of leading theteam brought about a sense of logic and deep analysis in every juror by the endof the discussion.Step 6: Build on the ChangeHenry Fonda was himself not sure whatto believe in, therefore, he didn’t want to force his opinion on anyone else.He wanted the other jurors to follow his train of thought after deliberatingupon the surety of all the evidences so that the unanimous vote for non-guiltyseems to be more appropriate one.