100+ Most Useful Business Quotes To Fit Any Business Situation: The Success Manual

On October 25, 2016 By thesuccessmanual Topic: Remarkable, Quotes, Book summaries free, Book summaries online, Book summaries for business students

Actully these are mire than 100 quotes arranged across 20+ important business topics. Look out for the quick guides to Mission Statements and Pricing at the bottom of this article. This guide is from The Success Manual, The Encyclopedia of Advice . A list of all the articles in the series on one page can be accessed here. You will also want to read 100 ways to be remarkable, articles from The Success Manual.

The idea behind The Sucess Manual is simple: you do not need expensive business sources and books to excel at work and in life. Read about this idea here. The Success Manual provides you with advice on 130 topics in all - 65 business topics and 65-odd personal development topics.

Co-workers detest screamers.
- Anon


Information overload will lead to ‘future shock syndrome’ as an individual will suffer severe physical and mental disturbances.
- Alvin Toffler

(E-mail) is a $650 Billion Drag on the Economy.
- The New York Times, 2007

Information Overload = "information pollution"
- Jakob Nielsen, usability expert

The effect: Email overload is a big menace for business productivity.

- Everyone is emailing so much
- SPAM, dangerous attachments, lengthy reports, presentations (like this one), media files...


Stratify suppliers into those that: a) must be paid currently, b) accept late payment occasionally, c) take late payment as a matter of informal policy.
- James Wicker

Choose a job that you like and you will never have to work a day in your life
- Confucius

Beware the manager who proclaims to the world he is a long-termer beginning today.
- Thomas Boone Pickens Jr.

He got a corporation mind. He don't believe in nature; he puts his trust and distrust in man.
- Norman Mailer

Don't be irreplaceable. If you can't be replaced, you can't be promoted.
- Anon

Executive: A man who can make quick decisions and is sometimes right.
- Frank McKinney Hubbard

"No, no, no, Lisa. If adults don't like their jobs, they don't go on strike. They just go in every day and do it really half-assed
- Homer Simpson

A bad reference is as hard to find as a good employee.
- Robert Half

Evaluating a Company
“Warren Buffet once said that if he wants to find out how a company is doing, he doesn't listen to security analysts. They talk profit, which is irrelevant. He listens to bank credit analysts. They talk cash flow.”
- Peter F. Drucker


It's not the employer who pays the wages - he only handles the money. It is the product that pays wages.
- Henry Ford

No manufacturing company will ever do well if they are concerned only with calculating profits.
- Shoichiro Honda

When we finish our product development program, we raise our heads and look around to see what to invent next.
– Ed McCracken

In the era of globalization, plants tend to be focused in terms of product, robotized in terms of technology, and diversified in terms of markets served.
- Paul W. Beamish

If Honda does not race there is no Honda.
- Soichiro Honda


At the heart of capitalism’s troubles lies executive pay.
- The Economist

Outsiders think of Silicon Valley as a success story, but in truth, it is a graveyard. Failure.. is Silicon Valley's greatest strength. Every failed product or enterprise is a lesson stored in the collective memory of the country. We not only don't stigmatize failure, sometime we even admire it. Venture Capitalists actually like to see a little failure in the resumes of entrepreneurs.
- Mike Malone

The World of Technology thrives best when individuals are left alone to be different, creative, and disobedient.
– Don Valentine

Any engineer that doesn't need to wash his hands at least three times a day is a failure.
- Shoichiro Toyoda

Computers can figure out all kinds of problems, except the things in the world that just don’t add up.
- James Magary

On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog.
- Peter Steiner, cartoon in The New Yorker,

Technology has its uses but it is not fascinating like art.
- Hannah, 17, Survey of youth, by Phatgnat

PCMCIA - People can't memorize computer industries acronyms
- Andrew Grove

Collective intelligence. Think of how Wikipedia works, how Amazon harnesses user annotation on its site, the way photo-sharing sites like Flickr are bleeding out into other applications...We're entering an era in which software learns from its users and all of the users are connected.
- Tim O'Reilly

Dyson’s Law: Do ask; don’t lie.
- Esther Dyson

Computers make people stupid.
- David Gelernter

There’s always a faster gun.
- Dennis Overbye

Eno’s first law
Culture is everything we don’t have to do.

Using is believing.
- Izumi Aizo

Information wants to be free. Information also wants to be expensive.
- Stewart Brand

More data is good, and drives out the bad.
- Charles Arthur

What changes the world is communication, not information.
-Izumi Aizo

If you don’t understand something, it’s because you aren’t aware of its context.
- Richard Rabkin

Physical universes are user interfaces for minds.
- Donald Hoffman

Science is the only news. When you scan through a newspaper or magazine, all human interest stuff is the same old he-said-she-said, the politics and economics the same sorry cyclic dramas, the fashions a pathetic illusion of newness, and even the technology is predictable if you know the science. Human nature doesn’t change much; science does, and the change accrues, altering the world irreversibly.
- Stewart Brand

The march of the human mind is slow.
- Edmund Burke

Humans change themselves through technology.
- Jaron Lanier

First your home is a constant, while the Net is a place you go; then the Net becomes a constant, while your home is a place you go.
- Bruce Sterling

“Communication media enabled collective action on new scales, at new rates, among new groups of people, multiplied the power available to civilizations and enabled new forms of social interaction. The alphabet enabled empire and monotheism, the printing press enabled science and revolution, the telephone enabled bureaucracy and globalization, the internet enabled virtual communities and electronic markets, the mobile telephone enabled smart mobs and tribes of info-nomads. ”
- Howard Rheingold

The Internet is like alcohol in some sense. It accentuates what you would do anyway. If you want to be a loner, you can be more alone. If you want to connect, it makes it easier to connect.
- Esther Dyson

The web is just going to be one more of those major change factors that businesses face every decade.
- Steve jobs

An important technology first creates a problem and then solves it.
- Alan Kay

The guy with the competitive advantage is the one with the best technology.
- Walter Wriston

The cost of electronics in a modern car now exceeds the cost of its stall.
- Nicholas Negroponte

You must accept that if the computer is a tool, it is the job of tool user to know what to use it for.
- Peter Drucker

A computer can tell you to the dime what you've sold, but it can never tell you how much you could have sold.
-Samuel Walton

90% of all technical problems are related to power and ground. Unplug it, turn it off, check for batteries, etc.
- John Kembel

Go ahead and fail. But fail with wit, fail with grace, fail with style. A mediocre failure is as insufferable as a mediocre success. Embrace failure. Seek it out. Learn to love it.
- Tom Robbins

The Learning person looks forward to failure or mistakes.
- Warren Bennis

I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.
- Wayne Gretzky

While hard data may inform the intellect, it is largely soft data that generates wisdom.
- Henry Mintzberg

Your job is to ask, How could we do it? How could we do it better? How could we do it cheaper? How else could we do it?
- Ben Krofchak

Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense.
- Gertrude Stein

Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future.
- Niels Bohr (1885-1962)

There is nothing so horrible in nature as to see a beautiful theory murdered by an ugly gang of facts
- Benjamin Franklin

Abraham Lincoln did not go to Gettysburg having commissioned a poll to find out what would sell in Gettysburg. There were no people with percentages for him, cautioning him about this group or that group or what they found in exit polls a year earlier. When will we have the courage of Lincoln?
- Robert Coles

Good design can't fix broken business models.
- Jeffrey Veen

In a knowledge economy there are no such things as conscripts - there are only volunteers. The trouble is we have trained our managers to manage conscripts
- Peter Drucker

Hipness is the only asset that matters.
- Paul Saffo, futurist, on Apple

I feel real pressure to have all the best brands and labels, not just from my mates but from adverts and the way things are sold to us.
— Andy, 16, Survey of youth, by Phatgnat

I don’t meet competition, I crush it.
- Charles Revson

I think there's a lot of merit in an international economy and global markets, but they're not sufficient because markets don't look after social needs. Markets are designed to allow individuals to look after their private needs and to pursue profit. It's really a great invention and I wouldn't under-estimate the value of that, but they're not designed to take care of social needs.
- George Soros, International Financier

Everyone must believe that the customer is the key to the business, and be willing to do whatever it takes to impress the buyer.

The parking is easy, there are no checkout lines, we are open 24 hours a day and we deliver to your house.
- Anonymous

If you like our service, tell others.
If you don't, tell us.

- Notice posted in a restaurant

Sign posted in a customer service department:
Suppose we refund your money,
send you another one without charge,
close the store, and have the manager shot.
Would THAT be satisfactory?!

Villages are small and personal, and their inhabitants have names, characters, and personalities. What more appropriate concept on which to base our institutions of the future than the ancient social unit whose flexibility and strength substained human society through millenia?
- Charles Handy, leadership and management scholar

Letting your customers set your standards is a dangerous game, because the race to the bottom is pretty easy to win. Setting your own standards--and living up to them--is a better way to profit. Not to mention a better way to make your day worth all the effort you put into it.
- Seth Godin

There is only one boss, and that is the Customer, and he can fire everybody from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.
- Sam Walton

Today’s typical customer wants only two things:
1. Good feelings
2. Solutions to problems
- Michael LeBoeuf, Ph.D., author

Are Your Customers saying WOW?
- Tom Peters

The Customer is not a moron. She is your wife.
- David Ogilvy

I look in my closet, and if I need it, I design it. If it works for me, it works customer.
- Donna Karan

If the shoe doesn't fit, must we change the foot?
- Gloria Steinam

It is possible to tell a customer "no", and have the customer thank you for doing it
- Phil Knight

The consumer is always right.
- Gordon Selfridge

In the customer economy, the key resource is knowledge about and relationship with customers.
-Patricia Seybold

With every decisions we make, the last question we ask is what does the consumer think of this.
- Niall Fitzerald

If I had a brick for every time I've repeated the phrase 'Quality, Service, Cleanliness and Value', I'd probably be able to bridge the Atlantic Ocean with them.
- Ray Kroc

Perception is all there is. If the customer think he's right, he's right.
- Tom Peters

Counter Rule: It's not always worth it to bend over backwards to a customer who think he's right. There are costs associated with pleasing to perfection.

Perception can be changed
- Phil Knight

The customer is God.
- Anonymous

You have not done enough, you have never done enough, so long as it is still possible that you have something to contribute.
- Dag Hammarskjold

The idea of intimately entwining with customers [to get ideas] is an idea whose time has come.
– Tom Peters

New technologies make it possible for even the mass marketer to assume the role of a small proprietor, doing business again wit individuals, one at a time.
- Don Peppers and Martha Rogers

We are in the lifestyle business.
- Nike

We always look at things, then I'll make up our minds.
- a female respondent in an Australian survey of women's roles in purchasing decisions

All we need is love.
– The Beatles

Don’t hire a dog, and then bark yourself.
- David Ogilvy

Microsoft has had clear competitors in the past. It’s good that we have museums to document them.
- Bill Gates

The kind of people I look for to fill top management spots are the eager beavers, the mavericks. These are the guys who try to do more than they're expected to do -- they always reach.
- Lee Iacocca

Visit a small business. Talk with the entrepreneur - look in her eyes and you'll find it. Young graduates have it - their chance to make a mark.
- Anon

Nobody spends someone else’s money as wisely as he spends his own.
- Milton Friedman

The surest way to get a VC interested is to say that you're not interested in taking VC money.
- Chris Yeh

The job of the entrepreneur is to make sure the company doesn't run out of cash.
- Bill Sahlman, Harvard Business School

There are two questions VCs ask that you shouldn't answer: "Who else are you talking to?" and "How much are you trying to raise?"
- Paul Graham

It's in [VC's] interest to collect the maximum amount of information while making the minimum number of decisions.
- Paul Graham

It's harder to judge startups than most other things, because great startup ideas tend to seem wrong. A good startup idea has to be not just good but novel. And to be both good and novel, an idea probably has to seem bad to most people, or someone would already be doing it and it wouldn't be novel.
- Paul Graham

The less time and money it takes to start and manage a company, the more likely it is to succeed. First-time entrepreneurs are better off pursuing ideas they can implement handily.
- Robert Kessler

All financial models built of a start-up projecting more than 6 months in the future are guaranteed to be grossly inaccurate.
- Anon

Rapid growth strips businesses of cash. How fast can a business grow? A quick estimate is to divide the operating cash flow divided by net working capital (or how much net cash each sale produces divided by the cash investment in working capital each dollar in sales requires). By changing A/R, A/P, production and inventory policies and even payroll timing, a business can significantly alter its cash sustainable growth rate.
- S Milford

Never, ever, ever pay compliments that contain comparatives (e.g. "than").

The Golden Rule of Bureaucracy:
Whoever has the gold makes the rules.

Guideline for bureaucrats:
1. When in charge, ponder.
2. When in trouble, delegate.
3. When in doubt, mumble.
- James H. Boren

Bureaucracy is a giant mechanism operated by pygmies.
– Honore’ de Balzac


Balance Sheets are meaningless. Our accounting systems are still based on the assumption that 80% of costs are manual labor.
- Peter Drucker

Capital as such is not evil; it is its wrong use that is evil. Capital in some form or other will always be needed.
- Mahatma Gandhi

There are two kinds of statistics, the kind you lookup and the kind you make up.
- Rex Stout

Profit is like health, necessary but not the reason why we live.
- Anonymous

Watch the costs and the profits will take care of themselves.
- Andrew Carnegie

Our policy is to reduce the price, extend the operations, and improve the article.
- Henry Ford

The telephone operator has one of the biggest roles in creating your organization’s image….indeed, many people may come into contact with no one except your operator.
- Guy Kawasaki

The budget is god.

Grand business plans are all very well, but nothing beats dipping your toe in water.
- Karan Bilimoria

1) Who else have you spoken to?
2) How will you make money?
3) How will your company grow?
4) What technologies do you use?
5) How easily can you be copied?
6) Can we see the demo?
7) Who are your competitors and how are you better/different?
8) Who are your customers?
9) How will you spread the word about your product?
10) What will your market penetration be?
- Chris Campbell

Small business, right down to the individual can beat big, bureaucratic companies ten times out of ten.
- John Naisbitt

Is your company so small you have to do everything for yourself? Wait until you are so big that you can't. That's worse.
- Michael Bloomberg

There is an underutilized work force of well-qualified women who want to work part-time.
- Gun Denhart

A woman is like a tea - only in hot water do you realize how strong she is.
- Nancy Reagan

In politics, if you want anything said, ask a man. If you anything done, ask a woman.
- Margaret Thatcher

Women....work with, not over or for.
- Faith Popcorn

A well-run business must have high and consistent standards of ethics.
- Anonymous

I think the business practices would improve immeasurable if they were guided by 'feminine' principles – qualities like love and care and intuition.
-Anita Roddick

Conscience is the inner voice that warns us somebody may be looking.
- H.L. Mencken

The two steps to total business success:
1) Never give away all your secrets
- Anon

Mission Statements are Declaration of a company’s core purpose. The main force driving mission statements is to help employees share a clear sense of what the company is striving for. So many companies take their time developing a mission statement.

In addition to mission statements, companies have developed amplifications with names like values statement and vision statement. Broad and vague mission statements will get only a shrug from the employees. You are wasting your time unless your words are specific, the statement is something the employees can
act on, and top management is committed to it. The best mission statements are never longer than 2 lines. Like, improving the
quality of life of people.

To organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful.
- Google

To connect people to their passions, communities, and the world’s knowledge.
- Yahoo!

Which one is better?
Google's mission statement is better. It is not vague.
It focuses on one thing and one thing alone.

The Internet is vast and growing. Google had us at Organizing.

Business proof:
• Google has 66% of the Search market.
• Yahoo 19%.


Microsoft: "At Microsoft, we work to help people and businesses throughout the world realize their full potential."

Sony: "To experience the joy of advancing and applying technology for the benefit of the public."


1. They are short.
The holy grail of mission statements:
“Stand for a word. So much so that it becomes a verb.”

Google: Search
Fedex: Courier
Apple: Cool
England: The Queen

2. They tell customers why your business exists.
If the customer doesn't get your mission statement, you have had it.

3. They make a simple promise and deliver on it consistently.
The truth is, as long as your customers are satisfied, no one is even looking at your mission statement.

“Have fun. Do great work. Be profitable.”
- Holland Mark Martin ad agency

“A mission statement is a long awkward sentence that demonstrates management inability to think clearly".
- Definition by Dilbert

"We will have all the wealth in the world
while everybody else dies in the gutter
wishing they were us."
- Customer’s translation of your ‘bad’ mission statement
- The Simpleguide

1. Supply and demand are not independent; supply-side variables like MSRP can impact willingness to pay. Price "memory" can also have a major impact. Doubling the price of milk and halving the price of wine would have a major short-term impact, but it's unlikely to have a long-term impact on consumption patterns. And if you induced amnesia about the previous prices, it might have nearly no impact at all.
2. "Free" makes us perceive what is being offered as immensely more valuable than it really is
* Humans are loss-averse; when considering a normal purchase, loss-aversion comes into play
* But when an item is free, there is no visible possibility of loss

3. In the real world, this effect was demonstrated by Amazon's free shipping.
* After Super Saver shipping was introduced, Amazon saw sales increases everywhere except for France
* It turned out that the French division offered 1 franc ($0.20) pricing instead of free pricing.
* When this was changed to free, France saw the same sales increases as elsewhere

4. Another real-world example: People will wait in line for absurdly long times to get something for free.
5. Free is one of the most powerful ways to trigger behavior
- Predictably Irrational, The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions, by Dan Ariely

If employees aren't satisfied, they won't promote the product we need.
– Herb Kelleher

The more time I spend with our people, the more I find out about our business.
- Herb Kelleher

The best balance of morale for employee can be described this way: happy, but with low self-esteem.
-Scott Adams

We are Wikipedians. This means that we should be: kind, thoughtful, passionate about getting it right, open, tolerant of different viewpoints, open to criticism, bold about changing our policies and also cautious about changing our policies. We are not vindictive, childish, and we don't stoop to the level of our worst critics, no matter how much we may find them to be annoying.
- Jimmy Wales

MBWA (Management by walking around) rules.
- Tom Peters

Know that right is on your side when you have to fire so you don’t suffer too much.
- Anon

You never really hear the truth from your subordinates until after 10 in the evening.
- Jurgen Schrempp, Former CEO of DaimlerChrysler

Quick decisions are an easy way to get respect from your staff.
- Anon

Other things than money – praise, appreciation, respect, happy work atmosphere, likeable co-workers- will help keep a good person around.
- Anon

Management Speak: Empower.
Meaning: Freely blame your subordinates for your problems.
- Anon.

Management cannot dictate creativity.
Management cannot force loyalty.
Management must create an atmosphere that fosters loyalty and encourages creativity.
- Tony Calabrese

All good work is done in defiance of management.
- Bob Woodward

1. Don't criticize, condemn or complain.
2. Give honest and sincere appreciation.
3. Arouse in the other person an eager want.
- Dale Carnegie, "How to influence people and win friends."

Few things help an individual more than to place responsibility upon him, and to let him know that you trust him.
- Booker T. Washington


In business school classrooms, they construct wonderful models of a non-world.
- Peter Drucker

The most probable assumption is that no currently working 'business theory' will be valid 10 years hence.
– Peter Drucker

People always overestimate how complex business is. This isn’t rocket science; we’ve chosen one of the world’s most simple professions.
- Jack Welch

A business man was interviewing applicants for the position of divisional manager. To select the most suitable person for the job. He asked each applicant, "What is two and two?" The first interviewee was a journalist. His answer was "Twenty-two." The second applicant was an engineer. He pulled out a slide rule and showed the answer to be between 3.999 and 4.001. The next person was a lawyer. He stated that in the case of Jenkins v Brown, two and two was proven to be four.

The last applicant was an accountant. The business man asked him, "How much is two and two?" The accountant got up from his chair, went over to the door and closed it then came back and sat down. He leaned across the desk and said in a low voice..."How much do you want it to be?" He got the job.
- http://www.dennydavis.net/

There is more credit and satisfaction in being a first-rate truck driver than a tenth-rate executive.
– B.C. Forbes

Catch a man a fish, and you can sell it to him. Teach a man to fish, and you ruin a wonderful business opportunity.
- Karl Marx

Corporation: An ingenious device for obtaining profit without individual responsibility.
- Ambrose Bierce

A list of articles from The Success Manual, on one page can be accessed here. You can get The Success Manual here

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