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Business can be pretty cut throat at times but it’s usually not life threatening unlike the world of organised crime. In the spirit of previous tongue-in-cheek posts today we explore the lessons that entrepreneurs can learn from Mafia Dons. Unlike many large international organisations, the Mafia also known as the La Cosa Nostra does not have an easy to read ‘operations manual’ or a ‘brand bible’. It is very much a results- driven business with opportunities for fast advancement up the hierarchy. Below are the six top tips for entrepreneurs, with clear lessons for budding and established entrepreneurs taken from the Mafia.
Learn From the Mafia: Tips for Entrepreneurs
1. Gut Instinct
To survive figuratively and literally in the Mafia you must listen to your gut instinct and act on it at all times. Revenue forecasts and gant charts are fine but your gut instinct will keep you operational.
2. 100% Robust Referral Network
Everyone accepted into the organisation or as a partner or affiliate needs to be personally vouched for usually by an existing member of the organisation of at least a certain rank. We are not talking about Facebook ‘likes’ here as the penalties for mistakes in this area are quite harsh – death being the usual one.
3. International Alliances/ Partnerships
To be successful in the Mafia you will need to establish international alliances and partnerships that build scale and the productive capabilities of your organisation.
4. Rigid Control of the Supply Chain
To remain successful over a long period of time it is essential that you have a rigid control of the supply chain and are not at the mercy of unreliable or expensive suppliers.
5. Code of Conduct
Despite the lack of a operations manual there is a very clear code of conduct within the Mafia and this together with a definable organisational culture is precisely what you will need for the success of your enterprise.
6. Recruitment Policy
Cultural fit is vitally important so whether your recruitment policy is dependent on family ties to the ‘Old Country’ and place of birth or a clearly articulated recruitment strategy and process it must also be consistently implemented. Mistakes can prove very costly.
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Image credit: The Untouchables, Paramount Pictures – 1987