116+ Best Quotes From the Most Successful CEOs

A chief executive officer (CEO) is the highest-ranking executive in a company and his primary responsibilities include making major corporate decisions, managing the overall operations and resources of a company.

Becoming a CEO takes hard work and dedication. Most successful CEOs have an extraordinary vision for the company’s future, ability to learn from the past, realistic optimism and willingness to take calculated risks. Inspirational ceo quotes will guide you on your own journey, maximize your full potential and bring out the best in you.

If you’re searching for quotes about success that perfectly capture what you’d like to say or just want to feel inspired yourself, browse through an amazing collection of inspirational entrepreneur quotes, best business quotes, and famous life sayings.

Inspirational Ceo Quotes

The common question that gets asked in business is, ‘why?’ That’s a good question, but an equally valid question is, ‘why not?’ – Jeff Bezos

Engineering is the closest thing to magic that exists in the world. – Elon Musk

It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently. – Warren Buffett

Our industry does not respect tradition – it only respects innovation. – Satya Nadella

To be a CEO is a calling. You should not do it because it is a job. It is a calling, and you have got to be involved in it with your head, heart and hands. Your heart has got to be in the job; you got to love what you do; it consumes you. And if you are not willing to get into the CEO job that way, there is no point getting into it. – Indra Nooyi

A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position. – John Maxwell

inspiring quotes from the most successful ceos

Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart. – Steve Jobs

Balance suggests a perfect equilibrium. There is no such thing. That is a false expectation…. There are going to be priorities and dimensions of your life, how you integrate them is how you find true happiness. – Denise Morrison

For me, it matters that we drive technology as an equalizing force, as an enabler for everyone around the world. – Sundar Pichai

To me, business isn’t about wearing suits or pleasing stockholders. It’s about being true to yourself, your ideas and focusing on the essentials. – Sir Richard Branson

All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them. – Walt Disney

Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of the clients. – Richard Branson

Big thinking precedes great achievement.

powerful ceo quotes

We are really competing against ourselves; we have no control over how other people perform. – Pete Cashmore

A man must be big enough to admit his mistakes, smart enough to profit from them, and strong enough to correct them. – John C. Maxwell

To win in the marketplace you must first win in the workplace. – Doug Conant

Stone Age. Bronze Age. Iron Age. We define entire epics of humanity by the technology they use. – Reed Hastings

Every time you make the hard, correct decision you become a bit more courageous, and every time you make the easy, wrong decision you become a bit more cowardly. If you are CEO, these choices will lead to a courageous or cowardly company. – Ben Horowitz

best ceo quotes to inspire you

The biggest risk is not taking any risk… In a world that changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks. – Mark Zuckerberg

Don’t bunt. Aim out of the ballpark. Aim for the company of immortals. – David Ogilvy

Ceo Mindset Quotes

The world is changing very fast. Big will not beat small anymore. It will be the fast beating the slow. – Rupert Murdoch

Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher. – Oprah Winfrey

Work takes on new meaning when you feel you are pointed in the right direction. Otherwise, it’s just a job, and life is too short for that. – Tim Cook

ceo quotes

Chase the vision, not the money; the money will end up following you. – Tony Hsieh

If you’re changing the world, you’re working on important things. You’re excited to get up in the morning. – Larry Page

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. – Steve Jobs

Desperation sometimes drives innovation. – Dara Khosrowshahi

deep ceo sayings

Don’t worry about failure; you only have to be right once. – Drew Houston

No man can be successful, unless he first loves his work. – David Sarnoff

Any time is a good time to start a company. – Ron Conway

It’s not about working harder; it’s about working the system. – Evan Spiegel

encouraging quotes from ceos

You don’t need to be a genius or a visionary, or even a college graduate for that matter, to be successful. You just need framework and a dream. – Michael Dell

It’s in our best interest to put some of the old rules aside and create new ones and follow the consumer—what the consumer wants and where the consumer wants to go. – Robert Iger

Make every detail perfect and limit the number of details to perfect. – Jack Dorsey

High expectations are the key to absolutely everything. – Sam Walton

famous ceo quotes

There are a lot of things that go into creating success. I don’t like to do just the things I like to do. I like to do things that cause the company to succeed. I don’t spend a lot of time doing my favorite activities. – Michael Dell

One way to understand human progress is to look at how technology has made products and services – once reserved for the elite – progressively more accessible and affordable. – Dan Schulman

Life is fragile. We’re not guaranteed a tomorrow so give it everything you’ve got. – Tim Cooke

Find your passion, and it’s no longer work. – L.A Reid

inspirational quotes from the best ceos

Capital isn’t scarce. Vision is. – Sam Walton

Growth and comfort do not coexist. – Ginni Rometty

Without passion, you don’t have any energy, and without energy, you simply have nothing – Donald Trump

I think as a company, if you can get those two things right — having a clear direction on what you are trying to do and bringing in great people who can execute on the stuff — then you can do pretty well. – Mark Zuckerberg

inspiring ceo quotes

Rule No. 1: Never lose money; Rule No. 2: Don’t forget Rule No. 1. – Warren Buffet

It takes humility to realize that we don’t know everything, not to rest on our laurels, and to know that we must keep learning and observing. If we don’t, we can be sure some startup will be there to take our place. – Cher Wang

I always did something I was a little not ready to do. I think that’s how you grow. When there’s that moment of ‘Wow, I’m not really sure I can do this,’ and you push through those moments, that’s when you have a breakthrough. – Marissa Mayer

motivating ceo quotes

Do you feel good in your role? If yes, that’s the perfect time for you to experiment with something new, to get out of your comfort zone. – Pierre Nanterme

It’s not about having a specific set time; both personal and professional lives are 24/7. It’s simply, more about making the right allocation to each one and recognizing that it’s going to be different every single day – Ellen Kullman

motivational quotes by ceos

Leaders get out in front and stay there by raising the standards by which they judge themselves—and by which they are willing to be judged. – Frederick W. Smith

We will continue to build on our momentum in this important area of the world…through improved communication of our product quality, brand relevance and commitment to balanced, active lifestyles. – Jim Skinner

Coding is like writing, and we live in a time of the new industrial revolution. What’s happened is that maybe everybody knows how to use computers, like they know how to read, but they don’t know how to write. – Susan Wojcicki

Short Ceo Quotes

Smarter is always the answer. – Samuel J. Palmisano

I know how tough engineering school can really be, but it’s worth it. – Brian Krzanich

profound quotes from ceos

The heart and soul of a company is creativity and innovation. – Robert Iger

I’d highly prefer to settle versus battle … I’ve always hated litigation. We need people to invent their own stuff. – Tim Cook

You have to be very nimble and very open minded. Your success is going to be very dependent on how you adapt. – Jeremy Stoppelman

Diversification and globalization are the keys to the future. – Fujio Mitarai

It’s very difficult to design something for someone if you have no empathy. – Stewart Butterfield

Lots of companies don’t succeed over time. What do they fundamentally do wrong? They usually miss the future. – Larry Page

If you don’t build your dream, someone else will hire you to help them build theirs. – Dhirubhai Ambani

It’s not about how to get started; it’s about how to get noticed. – Steve Case

Your reputation is more important than your paycheck, and your integrity is worth more than your career. – Ryan Freitas

Fail often so you can succeed sooner. – Tom Kelley

Be undeniably good. No marketing effort or social media buzzword can be a substitute for that. – Anthony Volodkin

Nothing works better than just improving your product. – Joel Spolsky

An entrepreneur is someone who has a vision for something and a want to create. – David Karp

Don’t play games that you don’t understand, even if you see lots of other people making money from them. – Tony Hsieh

Thought-Provoking Quotes By Famous CEOs

In this ever-changing society, the most powerful and enduring brands are built from the heart. They are real and sustainable. Their foundations are stronger because they are built with the strength of the human spirit, not an ad campaign. The companies that are lasting are those that are authentic. – Howard Schultz

You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So, you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something—your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life. – Steve Jobs

There’s an entrepreneur right now, scared to death, making excuses, saying, ‘It’s not the right time just yet.’ There’s no such thing as a good time. I started an apparel-manufacturing business in the tech-boom years. I mean, come on. Get out of your garage and go take a chance and start your business. – Kevin Plank

Progress is often equal to the difference between mind and mindset. – Narayana Murthy

Live your passion. What does that mean, anyway? It means that when you get up for work every morning, every single morning, you are pumped because you get to talk about or work with or do the thing that interests you the most in the world. You don’t live for vacations because you don’t need a break from what you’re doing—working, playing, and relaxing are one and the same. You don’t even pay attention to how many hours you’re working because to you, it’s not really work. You’re making money, but you’d do whatever it is you’re doing for free. – Gary Vaynerchuk

Experience has taught me a few things. One is to listen to your gut, no matter how good something sounds on paper. The second is that you’re generally better off sticking with what you know. And the third, is that sometimes your best investments are the ones you don’t make. – Donald Trump

If you can’t stand a little sacrifice and you can’t stand a trip across the desert with limited water, we’re never going to straighten this country out. – Ross Perot

The number one benefit of information technology is that it empowers people to do what they want to do. It lets people be creative. It lets people be productive. It lets people learn things they didn’t think they could learn before, and so in a sense it is all about potential. – Steve Ballmer

Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is success. – Henry Ford

I’m responsible for this company. I stand behind the results. I know the details, and I think the CEO has to be the moral leader of the company, … I think high standards are good, but let’s not anybody be confused, it’s about performance with integrity. That’s what you have to do. – Jeffrey Immelt

The question I ask myself like almost every day is, ‘Am I doing the most important thing I could be doing?’… Unless I feel like I’m working on the most important problem that I can help with, then I’m not going to feel good about how I’m spending my time. And that’s what this company is. – Mark Zuckerberg

I think the environment has become more competitive. That has made Indian industry more concerned with a) its customers, b) the quality of its products, and c) its brand image in the marketplace. – Ratan Tata

We’re living at a time when attention is the new currency: With hundreds of TV channels, billions of Web sites, podcasts, radio shows, music downloads and social networking, our attention is more fragmented than ever before. Those who insert themselves into as many channels as possible look set to capture the most value. They’ll be the richest, the most successful, the most connected, capable and influential among us. We’re all publishers now, and the more we publish, the more valuable connections we’ll make. Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, Foursquare, Fitbit and the SenseCam give us a simple choice: participate or fade into a lonely obscurity. – Pete Cashmore

The thing that I learned early on is you really need to set goals in your life, both short-term and long-term, just like you do in business. Having that long-term goal will enable you to have a plan on how to achieve it. We apply these skills in business, yet when it comes to ourselves, we rarely apply them. – Denise Morrison

Show me someone without an ego, and I’ll show you a loser. – Donald Trump

My experience has shown me that the people who are exceptionally good in business aren’t so because of what they know, but because of their insatiable need to know more. – Milton S. Hershey

The distance between number one and number two is always a constant. If you want to improve the organization, you have to improve yourself and the organization gets pulled up with you. That is a big lesson. I cannot just expect the organization to improve if I don’t improve myself and lift the organization, because that distance is a constant. – Indra Nooyi

I just cannot emphasize enough what a strike would mean to us because we would absolutely be walking away from our commitments to our customers. There’s just no way we would recover. – Alan Mulally

In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different. – Coco Chanel

Government should support and defend its key industries through good policies, rather than what sometimes makes for good politics. – Gordon Nixon

But as an entrepreneur you have to feel like you can jump out of an aero plane because you’re confident that you’ll catch a bird flying by. It’s an act of stupidity, and most entrepreneurs go splat because the bird doesn’t come by, but a few times it does. – Reed Hastings

If you can’t feed a team with two pizzas, it’s too large. – Jeff Bezos

When you innovate, you’ve got to be prepared for everyone telling you you’re nuts. – Larry Ellison

Don’t worry about people stealing your design work. Worry about the day they stop. – Jeffrey Zeldman

The term ‘too big to fail’ must be excised from our vocabulary. – Jamie Dimon

The value of an idea lies in the using of it. – Thomas Edison

Don’t compare yourself with anyone in this world…if you do so, you are insulting yourself. – Bill Gates

The most dangerous poison is the feeling of achievement. The antidote is to every evening think what can be done better tomorrow. – Ingvar Kamprad

People who are unable to motivate themselves must be content with mediocrity, no matter how impressive their other talents. – Andrew Carnegie

This indicates that employers are hiring on an as needed basis, but are still not ready to staff up until demand for their business truly requires it. – Jeffrey Joerres

Always look for the fool in the deal. If you don’t find one, it’s you. – Mark Cuban

There’s nothing wrong with staying small. You can do big things with a small team. – Jason Fried

I do not think that there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature. – John D. Rockefeller

To me, business isn’t about wearing suits or pleasing stockholders. It’s about being true to yourself, your ideas and focusing on the essentials. – Sir Richard Branson, CEO of Virgin Group

We have to stay focused on both the details of value creation as well as careful management of our balance sheet. – W. Nicholas Howley

The show business has all phases and grades of dignity, from the exhibition of a monkey to the exposition of that highest art in music or the drama which secures for the gifted artists a world-wide fame prince well might envy. – P. T. Barnum

Being a leader is really different … I keep trying to learn and get better every day and learn from my mistakes and listen to the people I care about. – Debra Cafaro