19 Great Quotes to Prepare You for the Workforce
As the global economy gives way to results more than credentials, there has been more talk about what to do to better prepare for the workforce. It’s a fair concern. Societies that figure out how to more efficiently deliver services, make products, share expertise, are the ones that will win when it comes to job creation and business investment.
Success all comes down to the societies with the best talent. And the best talent knows how to approach the work, realizing it’s not what you know but how you use what you know. To that end, we’ve pulled together 19 of our favorite quotes for preparing an individual for the workforce.
These come from athletes, business moguls, philosophers, authors, and others from various walks of life. We think you’ll spot the commonalities in them all. In each case, we’ve taken a moment to explain why each is a favorite quote. We hope you enjoy!
1. Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do.
We picked this quote because it’s like getting the recipe for success from a master chef. Pele is one of the greatest soccer/futbol players to lace up a pair of shoes. And in a nutshell, he tells you what it took to get him there. These qualities are necessary no matter what field of study or profession that you’re entering.
2. 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. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.
Steve Jobs was a man with many problems and many flaws. But he seemed more alive and personable than ever when he was on stage at Apple Events. He threw himself into his work — some would argue a little too much from time to time — but the results of what he helped to create are hard to argue with.
3. Success isn’t always about greatness. It’s about consistency. Consistent hard work leads to success. Greatness will come.
Which would explain why “The Rock” does so many movies! But who can argue with it? He’s the biggest earner in Hollywood today and one of the biggest draws of all time. He didn’t get there overnight. He had to complete a number of challenges like college football and WWE wrestling before finding the success he enjoys today. That’s consistency!
4. Stay true to yourself, yet always be open to learn. Work hard, and never give up on your dreams, even when nobody else believes they can come true but you. These are not cliches but real tools you need no matter what you do in life to stay focused on your path.
A reminder that not all success is driven by money. You’ve got to be able to look yourself in the mirror, too. Thank you, Mr. Sweet!
5. Leadership is not about a title or a designation. It’s about impact, influence and inspiration. Impact involves getting results, influence is about spreading the passion you have for your work, and you have to inspire team-mates and customers.
-Robin S. Sharma
Or, the three I’s of Leadership. We love how Sharma breaks it down and reminds us that leadership isn’t about us but what we can bring out of others.
6. If you always put limit on everything you do, physical or anything else. It will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.
Get better every day. It’s your answer to so much of what ails you in life. Weight gain, trouble building exercise routines, understanding difficult fields of study or concepts. As long as you improve each day, even if it’s just by a fraction, you’ll get past those plateaus.
7. Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers. It may not be difficult to store up in the mind a vast quantity of facts within a comparatively short time, but the ability to form judgments requires the severe discipline of hard work and the tempering heat of experience and maturity.
This is very important to remember now that virtually anyone with a smartphone and an Internet connection can be an “expert” knowledge-wise in minutes. What you can’t do with that search engine and fast connection is apply what you’ve learned. That takes understanding, experience, and cognitive abilities.
8. Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.
Michael Jordan would know. Before he became arguably the greatest basketball player to ever play the game, he was cut from his own high school team. Talk about coming a long way!
9. I think goals should never be easy, they should force you to work, even if they are uncomfortable at the time.
No multi-time Gold Medalist gets there overnight. Michael Phelps set almost impossible goals for himself and he made them look easy when he achieved them. But they looked that way because he put in the work and pushed past his discomfort. You can, too!
10. Follow your dreams, work hard, practice and persevere. Make sure you eat a variety of foods, get plenty of exercise and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Remember that last word. Persevere. You will lose more in life than you will ever win. There will be big losses, small losses, medium-sized losses. But if you keep your eyes on the prize, you’ll get there and it will eclipse any of the despair that your defeats brought your way.
11. I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.
Inventor of the light bulb with the cleverness that led to that and many other profitable inventions throughout his career. This quote also plays back into what we said about losing. You’ll lose 10,000 times to get to one big victory. But when that big victory changes the world for years to come, those are 10,000 losses worth taking.
12. Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you.
We hesitated to put this here because not everyone in our readership is religious. But we like the sentiment here. Whether you believe in God or some other Higher Power or just the beauty of the Universe, it’s nice to find peace and comfort in things. But if you want the tangible successes, those aren’t just going to fall out of the sky. You have to put in the work!
13. My message, especially to young people, is to have courage to think differently, courage to invent, to travel the unexplored path, courage to discover the impossible and to conquer the problems and succeed. These are great qualities that they must work towards. This is my message to the young people.
-A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
Don’t be discouraged if other generations talk down to you. If other generations call you unrealistic. It’s your unrealistic thinking that will cure diseases, poverty, starvation. It’s your unrealistic thinking that will keep our world moving forward.
14. We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid.
We love this because a) it’s so Ben Franklin, and b) there’s a lot of truth to it that goes unnoticed or unsaid. We often think it takes work to get smart but with all the changes life throws your way, you have to be working really hard not to learn and grow from it.
15. Everybody wants to be famous, but nobody wants to do the work. I live by that. You grind hard so you can play hard. At the end of the day, you put all the work in, and eventually it’ll pay off. It could be in a year, it could be in 30 years. Eventually, your hard work will pay off.
Hart’s way of looking at things makes it easy to find hope no matter how old you are or where you’re at in your journey. Of course, 30-year waits can be frustrating. But the victories are sweet, just the same.
16. I don’t work with a stylist, I don’t work with a glam squad to get me together for the red carpet, I really enjoy the time it takes to do it myself, to choose my clothes and do my own makeup and my own hair.
-Dita Von Teese
Don’t lose touch with the little things no matter how much you grow. Remembering how to mop a floor or mow a yard and actually getting out there and doing it can help you keep your victories in perspective and never forget where you came from.
17. No man ever got very high by pulling other people down. The intelligent merchant does not knock his competitors. The sensible worker does not knock those who work with him. Don’t knock your friends. Don’t knock your enemies. Don’t knock yourself.
-Alfred Lord Tennyson
You only pull others down to your level. You do not reach the level they were at or any higher than where you drag them to when you go against this philosophy.
18. Enjoy your sweat because hard work doesn’t guarantee success, but without it you don’t have a chance.
Enjoying the sweat. Not focusing on when or where your ship will come in, but rather loving the process. These moves tend to pay off big-time when they do go your way. It’s worth the risk!
19. The brain is a wonderful organ; it starts working the moment you get up in the morning and does not stop until you get into the office.
Clever way of saying that we can get side-tracked too easily. That’s especially true when we don’t love what we do or we lack the passion for it.
The Drive to Prepare for the Workforce Is Important
If you aren’t trying to prepare for the workforce, what the heck do you plan to get out of life? Let the 20 quotes above motivate you to kick it into high gear. And while you’re at it, why not share some of your favorite quotes about work and success in the comments section below?
[Featured Image by Inc Magazine]