Leadership Vito Corleone Style

The classic film The Godfather offers valuable lessons for teamwork, making difficult decisions, and how to be successful without neglecting family and friends.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Justin Moore, CEO and founder of Axcient, says senior business executives and the mafia boss Vito Corleone, the central figure in the film The Godfather, have much in common.

The employer thinks that The Godfather is one of the best movies of all time and there are 5 lessons of leadership, which it lists for Fastcompany.com:

1. Build a powerful community
By granting favors and helping people with their problems, the "Don" of the Mafia developed "a network of influences," a web of relations that may not bring immediate and measurable results but, "could together strengthen his power base and have the potential to be reciprocal in the long term."

Building strategic partnerships enables companies to operate in difficult markets and reach success faster.

2. Make people accountable.
The Godfather reminds us of the importance of being tough when necessary. "As soon as Vito Corleone let his enemies see some moments of weakness, they tried to kill him. It was in large part due to the failures of his team," says Moore.

"In business, accountability is not achieved by criminal methods. But the lesson is this: to be successful in business you have to be tough, and you must focus heavily on achieving objectives and results", says Moore. "You are ultimately responsible for all your employees and shareholders and that requires hard and fast decisions."

3. Do not be emotional.
Moore uses here the famous line by Michael Corleone: "It's not personal, Sonny. It's Strictly Business”.

The author argues that many people do not like to talk about the fact that in business there are winners and losers. "If you do not take the opportunity to sell more, provide more or take your competitors out of the market, they will do so to you. (...) When people make emotional decisions, they start making bad decisions."

4. Be decisive.
Moore views the Godfather with a combination of shock and respect. "Shock because he (Michael Corleone) is so relentless and kills a family member, respect because Don Corleone knew exactly what he wanted, managed decisively and gained respect through strong leadership."

5. Spend time with your family.
Moore was not in favor the 100-hour working weeks that many entrepreneurs put in in search of great achievements, and having experienced it first hand, he believes that it is not sustainable in the long term.

"A leader can not succeed in creative problem solving and excellent decision making unless that person is connected to the people and passions outside of work. I find that often time with my family and friends is what gives me the perspective needed to build relationships and take decisive actions required for continued success in business," says Moore.

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