Say what you may about Adolf Hitler, one thing is for sure he had the ability to lead others. According to listovative.com, “He became the Chancellor of Germany in 1933, rising through the ranks and waged a great war. But his oratory skills, military expansions, and economic growth plans are something whose credit we have to duly give him and him alone.”1 Hitler would be defined by Daft, in The Leadership Experience, as falling under the old-paradigm mindset. He was a stabilizer, controller, competitor, diversity avoider and hero. (p.7) This Historical Analysis of Hitler will attempt to show, when it came to these roles, how he excelled and how ultimately he became ineffective.
Adolf Hitler was born in Braunau am inn, Austria on April 20th, 1889 the fourth of sixth children to Alois Hitler and Klara Polzl and committed suicide in his bunker in Berlin, Germany, on April 30, 1945. From his birth until his death at 56 years old, Adolf Hitler was forever trying to define his existence as someone great. His father was a customs worker who died when Hitler was just 14 years old. His mother died four years later. Hitler did not exceed in academics, for he had an interest more in becoming an artist. Hitler tried a few times to get into the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna but failed, leaving him lonely and isolated and hating things cosmopolitan and multinational in character, as he felt Vienna had become.2 It was here he learned to hate the Jews. It was here that Austria also turned him away as not being good enough.
It seemed that all roads Hitler tried ended up becoming dead ends, until he left Vienna for evading military service, and moved to Munich, Germany in 1913. He was forced to return to Vienna but failed the military physical anyway. He returned to Munich and volunteered to fight for the Germans, when WWI broke out in 1914. He fought and received the Iron Cross, Second Class, in December 1914, and the Iron Cross, First Class in August 1918. This was the first time in his life that he was recognized for doing something great. He enjoyed how it felt. It was in 1919 that Hitler joined the German Worker’s Party, which was later renamed The National Socialist German Worker’s Party, or Nazi party. The party had seven members. In 1920, he left the army to devote his full attention to the Nazi party and his position in it. The Nazi Party would grow in numbers and in 1921 he became their leader. The trait that is becoming most apparent is his Desire to Lead. (p.38) Hitler wanted to be the one in charge and he started to taste how it felt.
Germany was run by the Weimar Republic or Federal Republic, which was established in 1919 at the end of WWI. From the time Hitler became the Nazi leader until November 1923 the Nazi party grew tremendously because of Hitler’s propaganda use and the German peoples upset at the restrictions placed on the country because of The Versailles Treaty signed at the end of the war. The humiliation of Germany would become the basis for Hitler’s political ideas. It was in November of 1923 that the Munich Beer Hall Putsch took place and the Nazi’s tried to overthrow the Republic. Hitler was tried for treason and sentenced to 5 years, but only served 9 months. It was there in prison that Hitler wrote Mein Kamp, his political autobiography. He blamed the Jews for everything wrong with the world. For the next few years Hitler slowly, quietly rebuilt and by the time the 1929 Depression hit, Germany was ready for him to make his mark. The country was in a severe state of depression and Hitler would use this against the people he claimed as his own people.
Adolf Hitler was able to speak to the masses. It was through his oratory skills that he rallied the German people into following him. Most all research of Hitler points out his exceptional oratory skills. Hitler himself stated, “I have no equal in the art of persuading the masses.”3