Negotiation with the Families
Appendix 1: Literary Piece
We have chosen an excerpt from The Godfather by Mario Puzo as our literary piece of choice to examine the conflict portrayed in it. The way Don Corleone convinced the heads of mafia families to allow his son to live safely on American soil in exchange for his permission to carry out drug trading is a masterpiece in negotiation.
We have included a summary of the literary piece as well as the entire story as appendices. A few questions regarding the literary piece have been answered in this assignment and a business case around it has been developed. Summary
The Corleone family in New York was one of the most powerful mafia families and Don Vito Corleone, known as godfather, was the controlling figure of this family’s business. Godfather was always a calm, calculative person who made very few mistakes in life and took lessons from those mistakes. One day “The Turk” Virgil Sollozzo approached the godfather with a request of protecting his Heroine business for a huge fortune. He wanted Godfather to use his contacts of powerful figures in order to protect the drug business. In course of the conversation godfather found out the involvement of rival Tattaglia family in the business. He rejected the offer citing the attached risks in the business. He said that the powerful people do not see narcotics as harmless vice as gambling and he is not willing to trade family safety and security for lucrative proposal. But the eldest son of the godfather, Sonny, made a grave mistake by asking a careless question that showed the Turk some hope to get his goals fulfilled. Subsequently the godfather faced death attack, where the Turk was involved. His motive was to end life of the godfather and reopening of the negotiation with new in-charge of the empire Sonny. But the avenging son of godfather, Michael, murdered the Turk and prompted a war with the rival family of Tattaglia. In this war Sonny was killed and Michael, charged with murder had to flee from New York and take refuge in Sicily. The godfather was lucky enough to fight his life back and was recovered in some time. The first job after his recovery was to invite all five powerful mafia families in New York to a discussion table that could possibly end the dispute and prevent any more bloodshed. His motive behind this meeting was suspected at first, but godfather successfully persuaded all parties involved and won their confidence by employing Bocchicchio family, a clan instrumental in bringing peace, as the negotiator. The meeting was held in a boardroom of a commercial bank and the last to arrive was the head of Tattaglia family who challenged the godfather’s power by supporting the Turk. The godfather started the meeting in a composed manner not to reflect any emotions that might stem from the death of his son; he started as if nothing has happened. Cordially thanking everyone for coming, he said: “I am here not to quarrel or convince, but only to reason and as a reasonable man do everything possible for us all to part friends here too. I give my word on that, and some of you who know me well know I do not give my word lightly.” He proposed peace and expressed his unwillingness to lose or take any more lives. As proof of his words he cited his action of not trying to find out the killer of his son; that was the kind of trade-off he was willing to accept. Then he moved to “that is all I want” by articulating his concern about his third son Michael, who was taking refuge in Sicily, charged with murders. Michael should be allowed to return home safely, without any interference. He further pressed, “Once that is settled, we can talk about other matters that interest us”. He successfully made a point that discussions of other businesses are useless until the proposal he made was accepted. The first mafia voiced his concern about the...
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