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Good Business Quotes

Favorite Selections from

Furious activity is no substitute for understanding. – H. H. Williams

A mediocre idea that generates enthusiasm will go further than a great idea that inspires no one. – Mary Kay Ash

Why and How are words so important that they cannot be too often used. – Napoleon Bonaparte

Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work. – Thomas Edison

Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing. – Theodore Roosevelt

The very essence of leadership is that you have to have a vision. – Theodore Hesburgh

Be it furniture, clothes, healthcare…industries today are marketing nothing more than commodities – no more, no less. What will make the difference in the long run is the care and feeding of customers. – Michael Mescon

The ability to learn faster than your competitors may be the only sustainable competitive advantage. (from ‘The Fifth Discipline’) – Peter Senge

More business is lost every year through neglect, than through any other cause. – Jim Cathcart

There is only one boss – the Customer. And he can fire anybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else. – Sam Walton

He who wishes to be rich in a day will be hanged in a year. – Leonardo da Vinci

A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines. – Frank Lloyd Wright

I believe totally in a capitalist system; I only wish that someone would try it. – Frank Lloyd Wright

The business of America is business. – Calvin Coolidge

Most people spend more time and energy in going around problems than in trying to solve them. – Henry Ford

Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell. – Edward Abbey

No man is any the worse off because another acquires wealth by trade, or by the exercise of a profession; on the contrary, he cannot have acquired his wealth except by benefiting others to the extent of what they considered to be its value. – Thomas Huxley

I made my fortune by being able to spot a certain kind of man. – Ayn Rand

Pennies do not come from heaven. They have to be earned here on earth. – Margaret Thatcher

Let your discourse with men of business be short and comprehensive. – George Washington

Every day I get up and look through the Forbes list of the richest people in America. If I’m not there, I go to work. – Robert Orben

The concept is interesting and well-formed, but in order to earn better than a ‘C’, the idea must be feasible. – A Yale University management professor in response

Executive ability is deciding quickly and getting somebody else to do the work. – John G. Pollard

A leader knows what’s best to do; a manager knows how best to do it. – Ken Adelman

Morale is faith in the man at the top. – Albert S. Johnstone

Public sentiment is everything, without it nothing can fail, without it nothing can succeed. – Abraham Lincoln

None of the secrets of success will work unless you do. – Vic Harville

Nothing is particularly hard if you divide it into small jobs. – Henry Ford

We mean to have less of Government in business and more business in Government. – Address to Congress, 1921 – Warren Gamaliel Harding

If you believe in what you are doing, then let nothing hold you up in your work. Much of the best work of the world has been done against seeming impossibilities. The thing is to get the work done. – Dale Carnegie

Think about it. Right now, a whole generation of young (customers) in the United States has been brought up to take computers for granted. Pointing a mouse is no more mysterious to them than hitting the “on” button on the television is to their parents. – Andrew S. Grove

There is no business like show business. There is also no business like certified public accounting, but that doesn’t rhyme as well. – Craig Shaw Gardner

We treat our people like royalty. If you honor and serve the people who work for you, they will honor and serve you. – Mary Kay Ash

Listen long enough and the person will generally come up with an adequate solution. – Mary Kay Ash

The seeds you plant in the hearts and minds of others will be what you receive in return — 100-fold. Only sow that which you wish to receive in return. Sow good, receive good! Plant seeds daily in your Mary Kay business and your Mary Kay business will return to you. – Mary Kay Ash

After order and liberty, economy is one of the highest essentials of a free government… Economy is always a guarantee of peace. – Calvin Coolidge

The key to life is to figure out who to be the batboy for. – Warren Buffett

Get what you can and keep what you have; that’s the way to get rich. – Scottish proverb

Those whose work and pleasures are one are fortune’s favorite children. – Winston Churchill

One man’s wage increase is another man’s price increase. – Harold Wilson

Doing business without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark: you know what you are doing but nobody else does. – Ed Howe

He that is of the opinion money will do everything may well be suspected of doing everything for money. – Benjamin Franklin

Examine each question in terms of what is ethically and esthetically right, as well as what is economically expedient. – Aldo Leopold

The best preparation for tomorrow is to do today’s work superbly well. – William Osler

Genius is one percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration. – Thomas Edison

The ability to manage the unexpected consequences of our choices and decisions is the real secret in investment success…On the basis of my experience, greater danger lurks in the temptation to chicken out when the going is rough and your precious wealth seems to be going down the tubes. (A forward from the book, Stocks for the Long Run by Jeremy Siegel, McGraw Hill, 3rd edition, June 21, 2002) – Peter Bernstein

For those properly prepared, the bear market is not only a calamity but an opportunity. – John Templeton

Economics is extremely useful as a form of employment for economists. – John Kenneth Galbraith

Nothing levels a playing field like a better idea. (in The Freeman) – Stanley I. Mason Jr.

We demand that big business give the people a square deal; in return we must insist that when anyone engaged in big business honestly endeavors to do right he shall himself be given a square deal. (Letter to Sir Edward Gray, November 15, 1913) – Theodore Roosevelt

The secret of managing is to keep the guys who hate you away from the guys who are undecided. – Casey Stengel

The most sensible people to be met within society are men of business and of the world, who argue from what they see and know, instead of spinning cobweb distinctions of what things ought to be. – William Hazlitt

All men’s gains are the fruit of venturing. – Herodotus

Morale is when your hands and feet keep on working when your head says it can’t be done. – Benjamin Morrell

When speculation has done its worse, two and two still make four. – Samuel Johnson

Confidence is the foundation for all business relations. The degree of confidence a man has in others, and the degree of confidence others have in him, determines a man’s standing in the commercial and industrial world. – William J.H. Boetcker

Who likes not his business, his business likes not him. – William Hazlitt

The true worth of a man is to be measured by the objects he pursues. – Marcus Aurelius Antoninus

Business is like a man rowing a boat upstream. He has no choice; he must go ahead or he will go back. – Lewis E. Pierson

Commerce is the great civilizer. We exchange ideas when we exchange fabrics. – Robert G. Ingersoll

The big shots are only the little shots who keep shooting. – Christopher Morley

Money demands that you sell, not your weakness to men’s stupidity, but your talent to their reason. – Ayn Rand

Few trends could so thoroughly undermine the very foundations of our free society as the acceptance by corporate officials of a social responsibility other than to make as much money for their stockholders as possible. – Milton Friedman

The golden rule for every business man is this: “Put yourself in your customer’s place.” – Orison Swett Marden

It’s not the employer who pays the wages. Employers only handle the money. It’s the customer who pays the wages. – Henry Ford

Customer service doesn’t come from a manual, it comes from the heart. When you’re taking care of the customer, you can never do too much. And there is NO wrong way – if it comes from the heart. – Debbie (“Mrs.”) Fields

The only way to know how customers see your business is to look at it through their eyes. – Daniel R. Scroggin

Motivate them, train them, care about them, and make winners out of them…they’ll treat the customers right. And if customers are treated right, they’ll come back. – J. Marriott Jr.

Honesty pays dividends both in dollars and in peace of mind. – B.C. Forbes

Nothing is really work unless you would rather be doing something else. – Sir James Barrie

The best thing workers can bring to their jobs is a lifelong thirst for learning. – Jack Welch

If you think of vision and mission as an organization’s head and heart, the values it holds are its soul. (from ‘Making Common Sense Common Practice’) – Buzotta

When I was young, I used to think that money was the most important thing in life. Now that I am old, I know it is. – Oscar Wilde

There is nothing so easy to learn as experience and nothing so hard to apply. – Josh Billings

It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. – Warren Buffett