Throughout history, there have been some truly remarkable entrepreneurs. Iconic individuals such as Henry Ford, Richard Branson, Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg have excelled in their chosen industry and proven that anyone can become successful in business.
These business moguls have created some legendary brands, innovations and products and changed our world for the better. Henry Ford, for example, founded the Ford Motor Company and developed assembly line techniques which revolutionised manufacturing. Mark Zuckerberg, on the other hand, was one of the founders of the popular social media platform Facebook – this networking site changed the way that we communicate with each other.
So what drives these people? How do they achieve success? What inspirational advice can they give to budding entrepreneurs who want to leave a mark on society themselves? We have scoured the online world to bring to you 25 quotes from some truly renowned entrepreneurs. These quotes give you insight into how their minds work and what superb words of advice they can give:
1. Nolan Bushnell
“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, not a dreamer.”
In the 1970’s, Bushnell was a pioneer of video games and video games consoles. With his friend Ted Dabney, they formed Atari and created some of the first video games consoles in existence such as the Atari 2600. These consoles revolutionised our world and brought video gaming to the masses.
2. Catherine Cook
“To any entrepreneur: if you want to do it, do it now. If you don’t, you’re going to regret it.”
In 2005, Cook and her brother came up with the idea of digitalising the traditional school yearbook – with a little investment from their older brother Geoff, MyYearbook.com was born! The site was an immediate hit and over the years has gained support from numerous well-known businesses such as Disney and Neutrogena.
3. Mark Zuckerberg
“If you just work on stuff that you like and you’re passionate about, you don’t have to have a master plan with how things will play out.”
Zuckerberg is well-known as the co-founder and creator of the social media networking site Facebook. In 2004, Zuckerberg and several university friends came up with the idea in their dormitory. Since then, the platform has risen to prominence and he is now reported to be the 5th richest person in the world with a wealth of over 70 Billion USD.
4. Phil Libin
“There’s lots of bad reasons to start a company. But there’s only one good, legitimate reason, and I think you know what it is: it’s to change the world.”
Libin is a successful entrepreneur and businessman from Russia and became a prominent figure in Silicon Valley. He is best known for serving as the CEO of the software company Evernote.
5. Henry Ford
“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.”
In his time, Henry Ford worked with the legendary inventor Thomas Edison but that’s not what he is famous for. During the early 1900s, Ford created the Ford Motor Company and created a series of automobiles that the general American public could afford. This company continues to operate today based on many of the foundations he laid.
6. Donald Trump
“Watch, listen and learn. You can’t know it all yourself. Anyone who thinks they do is destined for mediocrity.”
Although Donald Trump is now one of the most powerful men in the world, before his presidency he was already an immensely successful businessman. His Trump empire included a range of hotels, golf courses and other ventures that he built up from an early age, starting in the real estate business.
7. Steve Case
“You shouldn’t focus on why you can’t do something, which is what most people do. You should focus on why perhaps you can, and be one of the exceptions.”
You may not have heard of Steve Case, but you have surely heard of the media company AOL (America Online). Case was the co-founder of this iconic media company during the late 1980s and early 1990s and saw it grow from an infant company into one of the largest online service providers in the world.
8. Howard Schultz
“Risk more than others think is safe. Dream more than others think is practical.”
Although Howard Schultz didn’t create the popular coffee brand Starbucks, he was the main driving force behind its expansion and explosion as one of the world’s favourite cafe chains. After purchasing the brand in the 1980s, Schultz helped open stores across America and turned Starbucks into a household name.
9. Steve Jobs
“I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.”
Arguably one of the most well-known and influential entrepreneurs in recent history, Steve Jobs was the co-founder of Apple Inc. Aside from his business skill and entrepreneurship, Jobs was also a visionary and responsible for creating a variety of popular electronic products such as the iPad and the iPhone.
10. Richard Branson
“Do not be embarrassed by your failures, learn from them and start again.”
From the 1970s onwards, Sir Richard Branson created the Virgin Group. This group originally started as a chain of record stores but grew to include rail services, airlines and some other ventures such as balloon rides. Branson also owns several Caribbean islands, including his private retreat on Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands.
11. Gary Vaynerchuk
“I hate how many people think, “glass-half-empty” when their glass is really four-fifths full. I’m grateful when I have one drop in the glass because I know exactly what to do with it.”
Originally born in Belarus, Vaynerchuk originally helped develop his family’s wine business up to a value of 60 million USD. In later years, he moved to the US and started several successful business ventures based on digital marketing and social media.
12. Biz Stone
“Timing, perseverance, and ten years of trying will eventually make you look like an overnight success.”
Christopher “Biz” Stone is best known for being one of the founders of the social media platform Twitter. With a current net worth of over 200 million, Stone has played a supporting role in many developing businesses and invested his profits wisely. He has invested in startup businesses such as Slack, Pinterest and Beyond Meat.
13. Bill Gates
“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.”
Bill Gates is possibly the most well-known entrepreneur of the digital era in the world. Gates co-founded the Microsoft Corporation and has built this company from the ground up and played an important role in its development until his retirement in 2017.
14. Reid Hoffman
“If you’re not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve launched too late.”
Although Hoffman has been a successful venture capitalist and investor, he is best-known for co-founding the business-oriented social media platform LinkedIn. Hoffman has also played an important role in the development of the payment system PayPal.
15. Bill Gates
“It’s fine to celebrate success but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure.”
Gates earns a second entry in our list with his words of wisdom. Since stepping down as the CEO of Microsoft, Gates has dedicated his life and wealth to philanthropic causes through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
16. M Scott Peck
“Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.”
Peck had a celebrated career within the US Army as a chief of psychology and worked at various psychological institutes during his time. He is best-known as being the author of the popular book “The Road Less Travelled” which delves into what makes a truly fulfilled human being.
17. Albert Schweitzer
“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”
Although not an entrepreneur as such, Schweitzer was a revolutionary who contributed much to the fields of theology, music and philosophy. He challenged various long-held traditional beliefs and also created a self-sustaining hospital in Gabon, Africa.
18. John D. Rockefeller
“A friendship founded on business is better than a business founded on friendship.”
The Rockefeller family is one of the best-known in modern America due to its immense wealth and power during the industrial age of the late 1800s and early 1900s. John D. Rockefeller had an estimated net worth of over 300 billion USD which at the time accounted for approximately 2% of America’s GDP.
19. Alan Sugar
“A good leader is not necessarily the most popular person in their business, but the best ones are liked because they are respected for their clarity and vision.”
Today Alan Sugar is best-known for his TV show, The Apprentice, but before that he was an immensely successful entrepreneur. He originally created the consumer electronics company Amstrad and also operated as the Chairman of the English football club, Tottenham Hotspur.
20. Duncan Bannatyne
“Everyone should pull their finger out and start a business and believe in themselves. There is nothing else to it. Anyone can make a £100m. But most people don’t go out and try. They just stand in the pub and complain.”
You may have seen Bannatyne on the popular British TV show, Dragons Den, where he looks to invest in potential new startup ventures. Bannatyne earned his fortunes, however, through creating and investing in a series of spas, health clubs and hotels throughout the UK.
21. Richard Branson
“My biggest motivation? Just to keep challenging myself. I see life almost like one long University education that I never had – every day I’m learning something new.”
The second entry for Sir Richard, this man has an estimated net worth of over 5 billion USD through his Virgin Group ventures. Branson has since used his wealth and power to attempt several world records such as crossing the English Channel and circumnavigating the world via hot air balloon.
22. Oprah Winfrey
“Every time you state what you want or believe, you’re the first to hear it. It’s a message to both you and others about what you think is possible. Don’t put a ceiling on yourself.”
Oprah was the host of the hugely popular chat show “The Oprah Winfrey Show” that aired in the US from 1986 to 2011. Winfrey has also become a successful publicist, writing many books and also creating her own radio show.
23. Adora Svitak
“There’s no committee that says, ‘This is the type of person who can change the world – and you can’t.’ Realising that anyone can do it is the first step. The next step is figuring out how you’re going to do it.”
Svitak was dubbed a child prodigy and has had a successful career in various industries including writing, journalism and the digital world.
24. Mark Zuckerberg
“The biggest risk is not taking any risk… In a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”
The social media giant provides us with another fine quotation. Zuckerberg is an example of how education is not vital to success as he notoriously dropped out of Harvard and failed to gain a university degree.
25. Ben Silbermann
“The companies that I really admire the most are the ones that have a deep visceral understanding of why people use their service, and they figure out ways of making money that is completely consistent with how people are feeling and what they are doing at the time.”
Silbermann created the virtual pin board Pinterest and operates as its current CEO. Before this venture, he worked at Google, and also had a stint as an iPhone app developer before creating the now immensely popular social pin platform.
There you have it! 25 interesting and insightful quotes from some of the world’s most famous entrepreneurs. We hope you have found this article illuminating – as you can see, there is a genuine belief that anyone can achieve their dreams and goals providing that they are willing to put in a little hard work and follow through with what they start!