Whether you’re opening an Italian restaurant or teaching a class on leadership there are plenty of important lessons to be learned from the managers of the American Mafia.

Making it in the corporate world is tough and many have likened it to the tough dog-eat-dog world of the American Mafia (without all the murders of course). So to inspire you, here are a more than 155 quotes found in books, newspaper clippings, and films about the members of America’s real Mafia. These unforgettable quotes teach us about life, family, money, revenge, and trust. Capishe?

Mafia Manager Quotes about Life

Life quotes from the mob.

  • Beginner’s rule – Keep your mouth shut, your eyes open, your fly zipped and do what you are told.
  • Don’t become involved in any office political battle without first asking yourself, ‘What’s in it for me?’ and then ‘What’s in it for them?

Don’t encourage overtime. Tell your people that the best way to impress you is to do a great job in the time allotted for it and then go home and relax.

  • Eagles don’t hunt flies.
  • He who can never endure the bad will never see the good.
  • Hit ’em where it counts. An eye for an eye.
  • If the pot is boiling over, use a long spoon. If the house is on fire; warm yourself.
  • If you can genuinely and sincerely fake honesty, you’ll be a success, never doubt it.
  • If you must lie, be brief.

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  • If you think and act solely for your own benefit, you will reach the top.
  • In a storm, pray to God but row for shore.
  • Men stumble on stones, not mountains.
  • Mind your own business, but keep your eyes on other successful businesses. If your neighbor gets up early, you get earlier.
  • Never give business advice to another that doesn’t profit you and your own interest.

Remember, not even a machine is 100 percent efficient. Don’t expect the humans who work for you to be.

  • The business of the mafia is business.
  • The golden rule of business – Whoever has the most power makes the rules and takes the gold.
  • To survive, be patient – watch, listen and say little. To win, be patient – survive, plan, and then strike swiftly.
  • When stumped for a solution to a particularly difficult problem, look to the past for a solution.
  • When you make an example of someone, make sure that everyone knows what the lesson is. Punish one, teach a hundred.
  • When you skate on thin ice, skate fast.

Mafia Manager Quotes About Family

Mafia managers.

  • Business comes first, before anything else. Nothing gets in the way, not even wife or girlfriend.
  • Don’t hire more than two members of the same household and never hire lovers, no matter how necessary their skills maybe.
  • Friends are not as important as family. Do not confuse the loyalty of friendship with the bond of blood.
  • If your plans prosper everyone will be your friend; if your plans fail-only then will you find your true friends.
  • Never make enemy you don’t have to.
  • Never reinforce failure; never marry a losing hand.
  • The best way to enter our business is to be born into it.
  • The only person you can ever trust completely ever, under any circumstances is yourself.
  • The wife of a careless man is almost a widow.
  • You can get bad advice from good friends, very bad advice from very good friends.
  • The man who doesn’t spend time with his family can never be a real man.
  • Fredo, you’re my older brother, and I love you. But don’t ever take sides with anyone against the Family again. Ever.
  • You don’t make up for your sins in church. You do it in the streets. You do it at home. The rest is bullshit and you know it.
  • Friendship is everything. Friendship is more than talent. It is more than the government. It is almost the equal of family.

Mafia Quotes about Money

Making deals you can’t refuse.

  • Behind every successful fortune there is a crime.
  • Fortune is on the side of the strong.
  • God will provide, but you must provide till he does.
  • I lost friends and money this year, but I only want the money back.
  • In this country, you gotta make the money first. Then when you get the money, you get the power. Then when you get the power, then you get the women.
  • Judges, lawyers and politicians have a license to steal. We don’t need one.

Let me tell you something. There’s no nobility in poverty. I’ve been a poor man, and I’ve been a rich man. And I choose rich every f*cking time.

  • Let your success make the noise but hustle in silence.
  • Like poetry, money affects people, although it’s just paper.
  • Men may be bribed in a variety of coin.
  • Money never cheats, and love never pays the bills.
  • Money never goes to prison.

Never worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow, you might inherit a million dollars or be run over by a truck. Or inherit a million dollars and be run over by a truck.

  • Some of your employees are going to steal from you. It is human nature, count on it.
  • The only difference between the Government & the Mafia is that the Mafia actually turns a profit.
  • The real excitement is playing the game because money was never a motivation for me.
  • There’s no such thing as good money or bad money. There’s just money.
  • Time is money, they say. But when you are broke, time is all you have.
  • We did not get any money from the early records. It was all taken by crooked managers. It is just a gangster’s paradise.
  • What you can’t buy, you can steal (but don’t get caught), and what you can’t buy or steal, you can beat out of someone, metaphorically, of course…
  • When talent doesn’t hustle, hustle beats the talent.
  • You can be rich without knowing how to be powerful but you cannot be powerful without money.

Mafia Quotes about Revenge

  • After a victory, sharpen your knife.
  • All problems resolves themselves; given time.
  • Better your enemies overestimate your stupidity than your shrewdness.
  • Every remedy of a bad situation has its bad side effects. Choose the remedy with the least.
  • Extreme problems often require extreme solutions.
  • For peace to reign, be ready for war.
  • I can’t stand squealers, hit that guy!
  • I have killed no men, that, in the first place, didn’t deserve killing.
  • I stuck the drill in his chest and his legs, on the side of his head. I ripped his hair out.
  • If the only tool you have is a hammer, all problems look like nail.
  • If you can’t win by fighting fair, fight foul. Or have a third party do your fighting.
  • No one dies twice.

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  • No one will ever kill me, they wouldn’t dare.
  • Nothing personal, it’s just business.
  • Strike first and you will strike last.
  • The best defense against the treacherous is treachery.
  • To deceive an enemy, pretend you fear him.
  • When you hunt, let the game come to you.
  • You ain’t supposed to be alive. Because I was making an example out of you for any mother ****er that tried it on me again. You understand?
  • You know what I’ll do? I’ll get a knife and cut out his tongue, and we’ll send it to his wife.
  • Our principles are highest; honor, solidarity and vengeance. We know there’s no justice for us except we earn it. We earn respect.

Mafia Quotes about Trust

Vintage gangsters.

  • A man without enemies is a man without qualities. Even Jesus Christ had many enemies.
  • Do business with strangers as if they were brothers and with brothers as if they were strangers.
  • Don’t be too familiar with your followers; it may at first inspire affection but eventually, like all familiarity; it will breed contempt.
  • The best friend of a hungry buzzard is a dead horse. That is in another way of saying; even the son of a bitch has his uses.
  • A thousand enemies is not enough; a single enemy is. There is no such thing as a ‘harmless’ enemy.
  • Be prepared for betrayal from anyone on your staff, but especially from those you have the most trust in.
  • Better that your enemies overestimate your stupidity than your shrewdness.
  • Keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer.
  • The problem with friends is their candor. They will betray you if you let them and then they will tell you to your face why: ‘it’s nothing personal, just business’.
  • Treat a stranger as a friend; trust him as you would a stranger.
  • He who pays well is well served.

When you compromise, you lose. When you seem to have compromise, you have taken a step towards winning.

  • Don’t become involved in any office political battle without first asking yourself, ‘What’s in it for me?’ and then ‘What’s in it for them?’
  • Agreements are made to be broken
  • There always comes a time to call in the marketers
  • Never expect logic and reasons to govern human affairs.
  • Fortune smiles and then betrays.
  • Don’t teach your soldiers, all your cunning or you may fall victim to yourself.
  • Misfortunes always come in by the door that has been left open for them.
  • You cultivate the loyalties of others by showing them that their profit lies where yours does.

Funny Mafia Quotes

  • A louse in the cabbage is better than no meat at all.
  • A smile will get you pretty far, but a smile and a gun will get your further.
  • All right so he got shot in the foot, why is it a big fu..in’ deal?
  • Even a mouse keeps three holes.
  • Every matter has two handles
  • I bought my wife a little Italian car. It has a Hood under the hood.
  • I wasn’t aware of it at the time, but I was a big favorite with the Mafia.
  • If a guy fu..ing tripped over a banana peel, they’d bring me in for it.
  • I’ll make him an offer he can’t refuse.
  • In the free enterprise system, it is big thieves hanging the little ones all the time.
  • It takes a thousand blows to drive a nail in the dark.
  • Just when I thought I was out… they pull me back in.
  • Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.
  • Long after others sins are old, avarice remains young.
  • Make a wish… it’ll be your last.
  • Stupid I-tai, bring a knife to a gun fight.
  • The IRS! They’re like the Mafia, they can take anything they want!
  • The Monkees are like the mafia. You’re in for life. Nobody gets out.
  • The same liberty that protects me also protects members of the Mafia.
  • There’s plenty of business for everybody. Why kill each other over it?
  • They were becoming like a little Mafia. If one committed a mischief, the others would not tell.
  • You see, I’m not “like a boss”, I AM the BOSS.
  • You’re either at the table or on the menu.

Godfather Movie Quotes

The Godfather.

  • He’s still alive. They hit him with 5 shots and he’s still alive.
  • Just when I think I’m out, they pull me back in.
  • Someday, and that day may never come, i will call upon you to do a service for me.
  • Don’t ask me about my business Kay.
  • Take the gun, leave the cannoli.
  • I know it was you, Fredo. You broke my heart. You broke my heart!

Luca Brasi held a gun to his head, and my father assured him that either his brains or his signature would be on the contract. That’s a true story.

  • Soldiers are paid to fight; the rebels aren’t.
  • I don’t fear you, Michael. I just dread you.
  • I trust these men with my life, Senator. To ask them to leave would be an insult.
  • I don’t like violence, Tom. I’m a businessman. Blood is a big expense.
  • Revenge is a dish best served cold.

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  • Finance is a gun. Politics is knowing when to pull the trigger.
  • I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse.
  • Never hate your enemies. It affects your judgment.
  • The lawyer with the briefcase can steal more money than the man with the gun.
  • A friend should always underestimate your virtues and an enemy overestimate your faults.

You talk about vengeance. Is vengeance going to bring your son back to you? Or my boy to me?

  • What are you gonna do? Nice college boy, didn’t want to get mixed up in the family business. Now you want to gun down a police captain. Why? Because he slapped you in the face a little?
  • What do you think this like the Army where you can shoot ’em from a mile away? N