Thursday, February 12, 2009

Favorite Quotes About Work

I read all 1001 of the quotes in the book, 1001 Best Things Ever Said About Work. Here are my 62 favorites arranged by category:


There is nothing brilliant nor outstanding in my record, except perhaps this one thing: I do the things that I believe ought to be done .... And when I make up my mind to do a thing, I act.— Theodore Roosevelt 

The Way of the sage is to act but not to compete. — Lao Tzu 

The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It's as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today. The true entrepreneur is a doer. — Nolan Bushnell 

When you're going through hell, keep going. — Albert Einstein 


It is neither wealth nor splendor, but tranquility and occupation, which give happiness. — Thomas Jefferson 

It is God’s gift that all should eat and drink and take pleasure in all their toil. — Ecclesiastes 3:13. 

The best way to appreciate your job is to imagine yourself without one. — Oscar Wilde  

The nearer man comes to his goal to make his life easy and abundant, the more he undermines the foundations of a meaningful existence. — Franz Alexander  

No man needs a vacation so much as the man who has just had one. — Elbert Hubbard  

It is the working man who is the happy man. It is the idle man who is the miserable man. — Benjamin Franklin 

To toil for a hard master is bitter, but to have no master to toil for is more bitter still. — Oscar Wilde 

When some fellers decide to retire nobody knows the difference. — Kin Hubbard


That man who knows too many trades . . . .his family starves. — Chinese proverb 


Arrogance is too often the companion of excellence. — Unknown wise person  


Little things affect little minds. — Benjamin Disraeli 

It takes a strong fish to swim against the current. Even a dead one can float with it. — John Crowe 

If your daily life seems poor, do not blame it; blame yourself, tell yourself that you are not poet enough to call forth its riches. — Rainer Maria Rilke 

Faced with having to change our views or prove that there is no need to do so, most of us immediately get busy on the proof. — John Kenneth Galbraith 

A professional is a man who can do his job when he doesn't feel like it. An amateur is a man who can't do his job when he does feel like it. — James Agate 


Being a well-dressed person is a career, and he who goes in for it has no time for anything else. — Heywood Broun 

Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months. — Oscar Wilde 


A committee of three gets things done if two don't show up. — Unknown wise person  

A committee is a cul-de-sac down which ideas are lured and quietly strangled. — Sir Barnett Cocks 

If you want a track team to win the high jump you must find one person who can jump seven feet, not seven people who can jump one foot. — Unknown wise person  

What the crowd requires is mediocrity of the highest order. — Auguste Préault


No one ever listened himself out of a job. — Calvin Coolidge

It's not what you say but the way you say it.- — French proverb

Words that do not match deeds are not important. — Ernesto Che Guevara  

When angry, count ten, before you speak; if very angry, a hundred. — Thomas Jefferson  


I made up my mind long ago that life was too short to do anything for myself that I could pay others to do for me. — W. Somerset Maugham 

Success means only doing what you do well, letting someone else do the rest. — Goldstein S. 


Diplomacy is letting someone else have your way. — Lester Pearson

A diplomat is someone who can tell you to go to hell in such a way that you actually look forward to the trip. — Caskie Stinnett 


Inferiors revolt in order that they be equal, and equals that they be superior. — Aristotle

Equality is what does not exist among mortals. — e. e. cummings  

That all men are equal is a proposition to which, at ordinary times, no sane individual has ever given his assent. — Aldous Huxley 


The darkest hour in any man's life is when he sits down to plan how to get money without earning it. — Horace Greeley  


I don't measure a man's success by how high he climbs but how high he bounces when he hits bottom. — George Patton  

More people would learn from their mistakes if they weren't so busy denying them. — Harold J. Smith 


Getting fired is nature's way to telling you that you had the wrong job in the first place. — Hal Lancaster 


I always wanted to be a somebody but I should have been more specific. — Lily Tomlin  

Give me a stock clerk with a goal and I will give you a man who will make history. Give me a man without a goal and I will give you a stock clerk. — J. C. Penney 


They stumble that run fast. — William Shakespeare  


If each of us hires people smaller than we are, we shall become a company of dwarfs. — David Ogilvy 


Perform your job better than anyone else can. That's the best job security I know. — H. Jackson Brown, Jr.  


The worst cynicism: a belief in luck. — Joyce Carol Oates 


So much of what we call management consists in making it difficult for people to work. — Peter Drucker 


If your company has a clean-desk policy, the company is nuts and you're nuts to stay there. — Tom Peters  


A lot of disappointed people have been left standing on the street corner waiting for the bus marked Perfection. — Donald Kennedy  

The pursuit of perfection often impedes improvement. — George F. Will  

Do the right things instead of trying to do everything right. — Peter Drucker  


Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. Calvin Coolidge  


Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work. — Peter F. Drucker  


Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. — John Wooden 

Where your talents and the needs of the world cross, there lies your vocation. — Aristotle 


Don't work for recognition, but do work worthy of recognition. — H. Jackson Brown, Jr.  

The highest reward that God gives us for good work is the ability to do better work. — Elbert Hubbard 


Retirement is the ugliest word in the language. — Ernest Hemingway  

To retire is the beginning of death. — Pablo Casals  


I don't have a lot of respect for talent. Talent is genetic. It's what you do with it that counts. — Martin Ritt  


It is vain to do with more what can be done with less. — William of Occam  


Those who make the worst use of their time most complain of its shortness. — La Bruyère  

Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least. — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe  


bob rice said...



Grace said...

If you have talent and energy, you're a king. If you have no talent and energy, you're a prince. If you have talent but no energy, you're a pauper.

- Jeffery Archer

Anonymous said...

Great minds talk about ideas, average minds talk about events, and small minds talk about people.
-Eleanor Roosevelt

I aspire to be a great mind.


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