Quotes And Leadership Lessons From Thor

A Reel Leadership Article

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Thor is the 4th movie released in the Marvel Cinematic Universe movie series. It stars Chris Hemsworth as the might Thor, Natalie Portman as Jane Foster, and Tom Hiddleston as the mischievous Loki.

I was dreading rewatching this movie. I remembered there was a Thor movie that was absolutely horrible. The dreadful movie wasn’t the first Thor movie. It was the second Thor movie, Thor: The Dark World.

Chris Hemsworth as Thor in the 2011 Thor movie

Thor tells the story of the fallen god of thunder. He has been cast out of Asgard by his father, Odin (Anthony Hopkins). The world of earth doesn’t believe he’s truly the god of thunder.

He has to convince those around him of his true identity while battling to get back to Asgard. In his absence, the Frost Giants try to invade Asgard and kill Odin.

All of this sets up future Marvel movies and the onslaught of Thanos (Josh Brolin).

It’s time to sit back and enjoy another Reel Leadership article. Get ready to learn leadership from the movies!

Quotes And Leadership Lessons From Thor

1. Jane Foster:

The last 17 occurrences have been predictable down to the second.

Jane Foster and Darcy Lewis (Kat Dennings) had been observing strange occurrences. They noticed the same strange occurrence would happen on a regular basis. Down to the second.

She invites her mentor, Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgard), to observe it with her.

When he goes out with Jane and Darcy, the occurrence doesn’t happen on time. Something has changed…

Leaders want to be able to predict what’s going to happen. This is one of the reasons we create plans, lay out goals, and more. We want to predict the future.

We use data from the past to give us the best idea of what will happen. We think we know what will happen.

While we can be confident of what we know and of what we have seen, we cannot be completely confident history will repeat itself. Leaders have to be ready for things to change.

2. You don’t have to lead alone:

One of Asgard’s greatest foes, the Frost Giants, had threatened Earth in the past. They were ready to wipe life off of the planet.

The Frost Giants would have if it were not for the help of Odin and the other Asgardians.

The Asgardians stepped in. They chose to help Earth fight back against the threat. Earth didn’t have to fight alone.

And you don’t have to lead alone.

Read that line again. You do not have to lead alone. You are not alone in this journey.

I want to encourage you to find other leaders who can stand by your side. If you can’t find any other leaders, find friends and family who will be with you.

You don’t have to lead alone. Stop leading as you do.

3. Odin:

A wise king never seeks out war but he must always be ready for it.

Odin was talking to his young sons, Thor (Dakota Goyo who was in Real Steel) and Loki (Ted Allpress). Thor was always ready to fight. Thor was almost bloodthirsty.

Odin knew better than to fight every battle. He knew that this was not how a king should lead.

Instead of seeking out war, a leader should be ready for it to come to their doorsteps. In the meantime, they should lead peacefully.

What kind of leader are you? Are you a leader who seeks out war? Are you a leader who seeks out peace?

Great leaders are not leaders who seek out war with other organizations. They are leaders who seek to lead peacefully amongst competitors and build up their own brand.

Make sure you’re not seeking out unneeded war.

4. Don’t listen to the wrong person:

Loki was Thor’s brother. Loki was also mischievous and devious. He wanted the throne when Odin passes.

This caused Loki to whisper things in the ears of those around him. He would give them suggestions that would be dangerous or deadly.

One of those was when he encouraged Thor to fight the Frost Giants. He told Thor they needed to fight for answers and that Thor was right (playing to Thor’s ego).

This gave Thor the permission he needed to go against his father’s wishes and enter the realm of Jotunheim.

We’ve all encountered our own Loki’s. These are the people who have an agenda and will use you to get to it.

They will praise you. They will tell you how awesome you are. They will then feed their twisted ideas into your head.

Be cautious of who you listen to. You may be listening to the wrong person.

5. King Laufey (Colm Feore):

You know not what your actions would unleash.

King Laufey was the king of the Frost Giants. He led ruthlessly and with vengeance. Yet he also was willing to keep the peace.

Thor’s actions could have unleashed an onslaught from King Laufey and his minions. King Laufey had the opportunity to wipe Thor and his friends out.

This was because of Thor’s actions. Thor chose to break the peace King Laufey and Odin had created.

We take action, often swiftly, without knowing what our actions would unleash. We’re like Thor in this regard.

We have to learn to move slower, with more intention. We have to be willing to take our time to gather the information that will tell us the next step to take.

Don’t rush into a battle headlong. Know what you’re doing. Know what your actions may unleash.

6. Odin:

That’s pride and vanity talking, not leadership.

Thor and Odin faced off after Thor’s disastrous attempt to attack the Frost Giants. Odin had to come to the rescue.

The father and son had a war of words when they returned to Asgard. Thor was not kind to his father. Thor was adamant he needed to attack the Frost Giants. Odin knew better.

He told Thor to chill. That what Thor did wasn’t leadership. Thor was trying to lead through pride and vanity.

How often are we like Thor? We want to lead through our pride and vanity, while not admitting to it?

Pride and vanity will get in the way of your leadership if you allow it to.

Know why you’re leading. Know why you’re doing what you’re doing while leading.

If not, you will lead through other means than what a real leader leads through.

7. Leaders will be stripped of their power if they lead irresponsibly:

Odin stripped Thor of his power and responsibility after acting irresponsibly. Odin couldn’t allow his son to ascend to the throne with his current attitude.

This meant Odin would take away Thor’s hammer, send him to Earth, and let him struggle for a period of time.

Thor was understandably confused! He thought he was doing the right thing. He wasn’t and he had to pay the price for it.

Leaders! Know that if you continue down a road of irresponsible behavior and decisions, you will end up stripped of your title and power. You may even be banished from your organization as Thor was.

This isn’t because you’re a bad person. It’s because you’re doing things you shouldn’t be doing.

Know leaders above you never make this decision lightly. They have to choose between protecting you and protecting the organization.

8. Small parts are still important parts:

S.H.I.E.L.D. quarantined Thor’s hammer. Thor, with the help of Jane Foster, broke into the S.H.I.E.L.D. facility to try to reclaim what he believed was rightfully his.

One of the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents was Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner).

He was in communication with Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) on whether or not to take the shot. In the end, Hawkeye didn’t take the shot.

This was a major moment in Thor. A new Marvel character was introduced. He was mysterious and cool. Still, his time on screen was short.

You may think the part you’re playing in your organization is small. It is not.

No part is a small part. Every part is important. Never doubt that.

9. Erik Selvig:

It’s not a bad thing finding out that you don’t have all the answers. You start asking the right questions.

Thor was confused. He couldn’t lift the hammer, Mjölnir. He didn’t have his position. He felt as if he was nothing at this point.

Erik’s reaction was perfect. He didn’t talk down to Thor. Instead, he affirmed Thor.

Erik told Thor he didn’t need all of the answers. Answers come when you start asking the right questions.

What questions are you asking? Are you asking the right ones? Are you stuck on not having all the answers?

The way to discover the answers to your questions is to begin by asking questions. The more questions you ask, the more answers you will have.

Ask questions!

10. Make a way:

Heimdall (Idris Elba) was the guardian of the Bifrost, the rainbow bridge. He had a responsibility to stop people from using the Bifrost inappropriately.

Lady Sif (Jaimie Alexander), Fandral (Josh Dallas), Hogun (Tadanobu Asano), and Volstagg (Ray Stevenson) approached Heimdall in an effort to cross the Bifrost. Heimdall told them he couldn’t open the bridge for them.

Heimdall then turned and left.

The Bifrost began to activate. Heimdall had made a way for them to cross by leaving the key to the Bifrost in the lock.

Great leaders know rules have to be broken at times. They have to make a way that normally wouldn’t be appropriate.

Know that you will have to make a way for your team at times that may not align with the rules. You will run the risk of getting in trouble for your actions but they will be the right actions.

11. Know when to step aside:

Odin fell ill, Loki ascended to the throne, and Loki sent a Destroyer after Thor. As the Destroyer began to attack the town where Thor was, Thor realized he wouldn’t be able to help win the battle.

Thor was just a man, at this point. He stepped aside and allowed Lady Sif and the Warriors Three to fight the Destroyer.

Thor still did his part. He helped get people to safety while the warriors fought.

There will be a time when you will have to step aside as a leader. It will not be an easy choice. Leaving leadership never is.

However, you will have to make the choice.

Be willing to step aside. Know when your time as a leader is done. It will help your organization, it will help upcoming leaders, and it will help you.

12. Thor:

I have much to learn.

Thor eventually regained his power. He regained them after his fight with the Destroyer and near death. His hammer returned to him and he was able to defeat the Destroyer.

Upon his return to Asgard, he talked with his father. Odin was glad to see his son. Thor was glad to see his father.

Thor also shared what he had learned from his ordeal. Thor knew he still had much to learn.

Let’s be like this version of Thor. Let’s be leaders who realize we still have so much to learn (I mean, that is why you’re reading this and other leadership blogs, right?).

We will never know everything. We will always be learning.

Never give up your passion to learn more.

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