It is a business, and that is why it is all personal
(a.k.a. The Godfather Premise)
Why, then, do I call this the Godfather premise? Because when Michael Corleone sums up what made the Don great, his speech actually goes like this: Tom, don't let anybody kid you. It's all personal, every bit of business. Every piece of shit every man has to eat every day of his life is personal. They call it business. OK. But it's personal as hell. You know where I learned that from? The Don. My old man. The Godfather. If a bolt of lightning hit a friend of his, the old man would take it personal. He took my going into the Marines personal. That's what makes him great. The Great Don. He takes everything personal.
There is not one aspect of business that is not personal. The specifications for your products come from people, and are personal.The designers that create your products are people, the products are manufactured by people, the folks that ship, sell, and buy the products are people. Those making a living in the business are people. Leaders that make great businesses know it is ALL personal.
During many of my engagements, inevitably there are some hard choices to make. The easy solution may appear to be doing something that is personally hurtful to someone. Typically, a middle manager thinking they are being cool, insightful, and tough, will quote a line from the Godfather and say something like, Hey it's nothing person it is just business. (I call them the "Anti-Don".)
For a business to succeed, it is important to remember that it is a business, and that is why it is all personal.
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Paul Fielding, Ph.D.