5 lessons CEOs can learn from the movie “The Godfather”

No deaths, horse heads or machine gun fire. For Justin Moore, CEO and founder of Axcient, a company that offers database backup and disaster recovery, the film “The Mighty Chefo”, by Francis Ford Coppola, filled with business management tips for CEOs.

Moore had seen the film about 10 years ago. But, he just now realized that the Corleone family gives great tips for running a business: “I certainly don’t approve of crime or violence, and I’m not suggesting that business should be operated like the mafia. But, there are some universal themes in the film I can relate to a CEO “, says Moore, according to the Fast Company.

The film’s first tip about build strong communities. Vito Corleone says that “someday – and that day may never come – I will call you to do a service for me”. These words show that it is very important to have a network of relationships. Moore explains that Vito created a network of influences and relationships by securing favors and helping people.

Creating strategic partnerships allows companies to work in challenging markets: “As a CEO, part of my job is to be a superconnector, creating networks between the technological community”, he explains.

The same Vito also says: “What’s the matter with you? I think your brain is getting soft”. And in this case, the film reminds us that there are times when we need to be tough. AND, hold people accountable on your side it also helps. “Just as Vito allowed some moments of weakness, they tried to kill him. And, in large part, it was because of flaws in his team,” says Moore.


(The Mighty Chefo, by Francis Coppola, released in 1972)

He explains that “to be successful in business you need to be tough and be extremely focused on achieving goals and results”. This means that having a lot of tolerance towards people or products that show low performance only makes everything difficult. “You are fully responsible for all your employees and shareholders”, he comments.

J Michael Corleone teaches us how to not to be moved, with the phrase “Not personally, Sonny. It’s just business”. Moore says that many people cannot cope with the fact that, in business, there are losers and winners. “In business, if you miss the opportunity to overtake your competitors, they will take you out of the market,” he says.

The CEO also explains that you must not do anything that goes beyond the limits of morality or rights, but that, “to be successful, you need to put aside your emotions and your egos”, because when that doesn’t happen, you take ms decisions. Always being one step ahead of your competitors and playing to win are important tips, according to Moore.

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