If there were an official ranking of most-used quotes about business from any movie, this would be number one. Often quoted as "Nothing personal, it's just business" (a saying allegedly coined by a mob accountant), this is a pretty self-explanatory phrase but an important one.
If you find yourself getting too worked up about a work-related matter, just repeat the phrase in your head. On the flip side of things, the advice also applies if you need to do something for work that will upset someone else.
This quote has some deeper meaning as well. Because of the serious delivery of the words by Al Pacino in the movie, the sarcasm of the line gets overlooked. Of course, making his bones was going to be personal for Michael. Just like everything he did in the family business from that point forward.
In fact, in the book by Mario Puzo, Michael did say it was personal, and not business, to Tom Hayden (Robert Duvall), after Capt. McCluskey broke his jaw.
"Tom, don’t let anybody kid you. It’s all personal, every bit of business. Every piece of s*** 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."
At the same, there can be value in getting personal with team members to build trust, rapport and empathy, and behind any successful business is a line of professional personal relationships.