André Gide wrote that,”Everything that needs to be said has already been said. But since no one was listening, everything must be said again.” Quotes are an important part of motivation, though many of them are repeats of another turn of phrase. Business owners are particularly partial to famous quotations. Reading a motivational speech from a business legend or famous creative mind can give you a spark. It doesn’t matter if it has been said before and repeated numerous times, quotes can give you the fire you need to be a better entrepreneur or learn how to handle a difficult situation. Below are some of those quotes sent in by entrepreneurs throughout the country.
#1 – 2 Ears and 1 Mouth
“You are born with 2 ears and 1 mouth, to remind you to listen twice as much as you talk”. When you talk more that you listen to what the market wants, needs and their frustrations and do not continue to innovate, this is when your business is disrupted.
Thanks to Sissy Lappin, Listing Door
#2 – Be Myself
I absolutely loved The Go Giver by Bob Burg and John David Mann. It is a little story with a really big message. It reminds me to be myself at all times and to put that me behind my brand. It is one thing that can never be stolen or copied. My favorite quote is actually one of the Five Laws from the book. It is: “The Law of Authenticity – The most valuable gift you have to offer is yourself”
Thanks to Roberta Perry, ScrubzBody
#3 – 80% of success is showing up
“80% of success is showing up.” Woody Allen. The quote from Allen summarizes the difference between me accomplishing something or just talking about it. Jumping in head first, working hard, and not worrying about perfection get me, as Allen says, more than halfway to my goal. Showing up every day, working hard, and producing something is the best advice I have ever followed. I know that talent, technique, and hard work all play a part in success. My talent is limited but my ability to improve my technique with hard work pulls me over the top more often than not.
Thanks to Steve Langerud, Langerud & Associates, LLC
#4 – Be Bold
“Be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid.”Basil King. There is something truly empowering in this line, nobody can deny that. As an entrepreneur you will find your self doubting your choices, wondering if you really have what it takes to reach the next milestone, new goals and upcoming opportunities. Although it was originally written in a different format (“Go at it boldly, and you’ll find unexpected forces closing round you and coming to your aid.”) this line obviously received enough attention to be re-phrased. Whether you’re entering a new sales meeting, court room, doctor’s office or a cage fight, you will find yourself repeating it more and more often.
Thanks to Igor Veden Vukojevic, Veden Media LLC
#5 – Grab every opportunity as if it were a falling snowflake
“Grab every opportunity as if it were a falling snowflake.” Sid Simone. Being a native of West Michigan, I know a lot about snow! Every snowflake has a different shape and size- there will never be a duplicate, and they melt before they hit your hand. Opportunities are the same- they are all unique, will never repeat and can disappear before you have the chance to admire them. You are only this age, at this time, on this date, being this person, seeing this opportunity ONCE in your life.
Thanks to Sid Simone, Sid Simone Solutions
#6 – Whether you think you can or think you can’t – you’re right
My favorite business quote is from Henry Ford “Whether you think you can or think you can’t – you are right.”. I love this quote because it reminds me in a very basic way that our thoughts determine our outcomes. The moment I stop believing that I can accomplish something, I have set my path. Conversely, when I think I can accomplish something I am able to. It may sound trite, but there is a great deal of power in the perspective we choose and it shapes the outcome of our actions; in fact it shapes our actions from the outset.
Thanks to Craig McLane, Vaped Enterprises
#7 – The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago
My favorite business related quote is, “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese Proverb. We so often want success to come quickly and this quote is a reminder that it takes time but there’s no better time to get after it than now.
Thanks to Dan Laufer, RentLingo
#8 – A little bit of something is better than a lot of nothing
My favorite business quote is: “A little bit of something is better than a lot of nothing.” This was a statement told to me years ago by a former client of mine, Chuck Kaady, owner of Kaady Car Washes, located in Oregon. It’s a rule of thumb that I’ve since followed in my PR marketing business that I’ve operated for more than 13 years. It has been a good reminder of why it’s important to keep my rates competitive, but not too high or restrictive for my clients’ marketing budgets.
Thanks to Kim Beeler, Beeler Marketing
# 9 – All your dreams can come true
When we first approached our families about turning our hobby of making candles and body products into a business, we faced a stampede of naysayers. “That’s ridiculous,” “You’re not quitting your REAL job, are you!?”, “Nobody’s going to pay money for that.” Scoured with incredulous reactions, we were left with nothing but the idea that we were disillusioned dreamers, until Disney. While digging through some old childhood items, we found Kristen’s grammar-school diary that had the quote, “All your dreams can come true, if you have the courage to pursue them” from Walt Disney. We took it as our sign; it didn’t matter what anyone else believed, we believed in ourselves and our products. Today we have a new, but flourishing candle and body product business, which makes adults realize that they’re “only kids grown up, anyway.” (Also Disney!)
Thanks to Kristen Fusaro-Pizzo & Frank Pizzo, Candle Moments
#10 – Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket assumes you have multiple eggs
My business partner always points out that “The saying don’t put all of your eggs in one basket assumes you have multiple eggs”. This is a great twist on an old saying, and one that casts doubt on some conventional wisdom. For most startups and small businesses, it’s simply going to be a fact that you have limited energy and resources. And you’ll never get a business off the ground it you try to do five things at once. So it’s okay to put your one egg in one basket. Focus on doing one thing well, and stick to that at least until it’s off the ground. This philosophy applies especially to marketing. A limited budget split five ways isn’t going to be as effective as taking one type of marketing and spending your energy to do it right. It’s okay to do a little testing to see what kind of marketing works, but once you find something that works, stick with it and develop it. For my current business, that something was SEO. SEO is especially time-intensive, but can create a lasting source of leads you don’t have to continually pay for. But because it’s so time-intensive, you really need to dedicate to it to do it right.
Thanks to Marc Prosser, Fit Small Business
#11 – If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree…
My favorite quote in business is from Albert Einstein: “If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid”This applies in the workplace because in various settings, you might come across employees that could be going out of their way to be good at something that was never meant for them, and you get to find out later that they excel in other fields or activities. Same with agencies or partners. For instance, you cannot expect a web development agency to be good at SEO or web design, and vice versa.
Thanks to Yasmina Yousfi, Cloudswave
#12 – Formula for Success
“Would you like me to give you a formula for success? It’s quite simple, really: Double your rate of failure. You are thinking of failure as the enemy of success. But it isn’t at all. You can be discouraged by failure or you can learn from it, so go ahead and make mistakes. Make all you can. Because remember that’s where you will find success.” Thomas J. Watson. One of the most important realizations I’ve had over the last few years after reading and observing successful entrepreneurs is their speed of testing and failure. Many of them started at an early age and have tested many different types of businesses and failed at them until they hit their clip. One can think of this as a “stair-step approach” where you start with smaller ventures and fail or succeed at that venture before moving on. The more rapidly you can test and learn from failures and successes, the faster and greater your progress will come. Richard Branson started early and experimented with many businesses in his life, some working well, some flopping. Travis Kalanick toiled away at his previous company before he was able to sell it and move on to Uber. Many business legends toiled and struggled in their initial businesses while they learned rapidly and hit their stride later on.
Thanks to Joseph Robison, Green Flag Digital
#13 – Life is a Dance
My favorite quote is from Arianna Huffington as I heard it on OWN’s Super Soul Sunday, “Life is a dance between making things happen and letting things happen.” Huffington was discussing some of the lessons she learned that inspired her business book *Thrive*. I love the quote because it came at a time that I was feeling kinda low about some of the less successful projects and ventures I had pursued in my business. The quote reminded me that my success was not 100% in my control (now I am 100% responsible but not in control – big difference!) but that as long as I tried my best and let go of the rest, life, God, the Universe whatever, would rise up to meet me. It give me such peace to not have to be in control of everything, but to release control and expect the unexpected.
Thanks to Markita Samuel, Making Straight Paths
#14 – Advertising is the price you pay for being unremarkable
I heard this at a conference from the founder of the Geek Squad and former CTO of Best Buy, Robert Stephens:”Advertising is the price you pay for being unremarkable.” This has stuck with me ever since I heard and inspires me to think of ways I can make my corporation more “remarkable”.
Thanks to Nick Espinosa, BSSi2
#15 – The successful man will profit from his mistakes
Quotes from great people are a significant motivation technique for oneself as well for the team. One of the quotes that has been etched in my mind ever since I came across it, goes like this : “The successful man will profit from his mistakes and try again in a different way” – Dale Carnegie. It has really motivated me to go ahead and take chances in my business, make mistakes and learn from them. Some of the chances worked out really well and some did not. But the key always being I learn from the mistakes and never repeat them. Even making a mistake is a valuable learning experience. Next time, I would go another round with the same problem but try a different way instead.
Thanks to Srajan Mishra, TSI International
#16 – No secrets to success
“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.” This quote by Colin Powell is by far my favorite business quote, because there is indeed no secret to a successful business. Being an entrepreneur is not easy nor is the process flawless. When you have your own business you have to be just as disciplined, focused and consistent as if you were going to work every day for someone else. Being an entrepreneur involves a lot of hard work and dedication just as it calls for some wins it also calls for some failures.
Thanks to Tiffany Sartor, Posh Peyton
#17 – Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning
“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.”Bill Gates. In order to succeed in this industry, your business must be consumer /client based. Unhappy and challenging customers can be turned into something that can benefit the business, especially start-ups and small businesses. If you know how to handle both your good and bad customers, then you’re on the right track to perfecting customer satisfaction which is what companies are mostly rooted from.
Thanks to Marten Skupien, Enerpan Technology