I’ll Make You and Offer You Can’t Refuse by Michael Franzese

I have been actively involved with business and finance for over a decade. I traded my first stocks at twelve years old and I can remember in detail the days that I snuck out of class to go to the “bathroom” when in fact I was trading my favorite stocks on E*trade. Names like Genzyme, America Online, Natural Microsystems, and eBay made up my portfolio and led to returns that seemed to double my assets every few months. It was an incredible time and I learned more on those years than I could have possibly learned in any finance class. Over a decade later I have become more involved in finance than ever. I work with the largest, most important financial advisory teams in the country and help them make investment decisions that affect their clients. It is a privilege and a joy to it. Most of the skills I use every day came from managing my own portfolio through the boom of the 90s and bust of the early 2000s.


In much the same manner that I learned about finance, by doing it, Mr. Franzese learned about business – by doing it. This book is all about Mr. Franzese’s life in the mafia. He dealt with some of the most corrupt people on the east coast and through it all he learned important lessons. Lessons that work well in the mob which he feels work just as well in the business world. The book was fun and interesting to read. He told fascinating stories that really kept me involved with the book, but I did feel like he held back. I guess he had to hold back, I am sure there are things that he could not share and as a result intense stories were slightly dulled. The best examples to support his points may have had to have been left out of the book for the sake of keeping others from getting in trouble for the things they did. It was an interesting read and I certainly learned from it, however it was not one of the best business books I have read. There are other business books that are better on leadership and managing others, however this was certainly the most unique book on business and people management that I have ever read.


In the end I say this book it worth a read, don’t take your time and deeply study every page, but certainly read this book for an intriguing approach to business – the mob approach. In the end it isn’t about breaking the law or threatening people. At the end of the day the book really makes the point that business is about people, the people on the other side of the table as well as the people on your side of the table. You need to protect those who support you and deal honestly with those on the other side of the deal. This life is extremely difficult without trust. Be someone who others can trust and I think that the business will become far easier over time.

Enjoy it! Let me know what you think.