We all know that Henry Ford--the founder of the Ford Motor Company--was a remarkable leader, entrepreneur, and inventor. Not only did he invent the modern assembly line for building cars, but he earned more than 100 patents and he made car ownership--and the freedom to travel that came along with it--affordable for millions of Americans.

I was recently looking up a quotation attributed to Henry Ford, and I was surprised to see just how much of his wisdom has made its way into the common language of business today. Here are some of my favorites.

  • Before everything else, getting ready is the secret of success.
  • It has been my observation that most people get ahead during the time that others waste.
  • Don't find fault, find a remedy.
  • A business that makes nothing but money is a poor business.
  • The man who will use his skill and constructive imagination to see how much he can give for a dollar, instead of how little he can give for a dollar, is bound to succeed.
  • Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.
  • Whether you believe you can do a thing or not, you are right.
  • There are no big problems, there are just a lot of little problems.
  • If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person's point of view and see things from that person's angle as well as from your own.
  • A market is never saturated with a good product, but it is very quickly saturated with a bad one.
  • An idealist is a person who helps other people to be prosperous.
  • There is joy in work. There is no happiness except in the realization that we have accomplished something.
  • There is no man living that can not do more than he thinks he can.
  • Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.
  • I cannot discover that anyone knows enough to say definitely what is and what is not possible.
  • Wealth, like happiness, is never attained when sought after directly. It comes as a by-product of providing a useful service.
  • Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.
  • Life is a series of experiences, each one of which makes us bigger, even though sometimes it is hard to realize this. For the world was built to develop character, and we must learn that the setbacks and grieves which we endure help us in our marching onward.
  • Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is probably the reason why so few engage in it.
  • There is one rule for the industrialist and that is: Make the best quality of goods possible at the lowest cost possible, paying the highest wages possible.
  • You can't build a reputation on what you are going to do.
Published on: Dec 6, 2014
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