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Peter Drucker Quotes

Peter Drucker Tips

Peter Drucker quotes: here’s a list of must-read quotes from one of the best business minds ever, the late Peter F. Drucker.

“Doing the right thing is more important than doing the thing right.”

“People who don’t take risks generally make about two big mistakes a year.  People who do take risks generally make about two big mistakes a year.”

“If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old.”

“Successful careers are not planned.  They develop when people are prepared for opportunities because they understand their strengths, their method of work, their values.  Knowing where one belongs can transform an ordinary person – hardworking and competent but otherwise mediocre – into an outstanding performer.”

“The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well that the product or service fits her and sells itself.”

“What gets measured gets improved.”

“The purpose of information is not knowledge.  It is being able to take the right action.”

“Profit for a company is like oxygen for a person.  If you don’t have enough of it, you’re out of the game.  But if you think your life is about breathing, you’re really missing something.”

“The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence; it is to act with yesterday’s logic.”

“Listening is not a skill; it is a discipline.”

“A man should never be appointed to a managerial position if his vision focuses on people’s weaknesses rather than on their strengths.  The man who always knows what people cannot do, but never sees what they can do, will undermine the spirit of the organization.”

“Business has only two functions: marketing and innovation.”

“An employer has no business with a man’s personality.  Employment is a specific contract calling for a specific performance.  Any attempt to go beyond that is usurpation.  It is immoral as well as an illegal intrusion of privacy.  It is abuse of power.  An employee owes no loyalty, he owes no love, and no attitudes.  He owes performance and nothing else.  The task is not to change personality, but to enable a person to achieve and to perform.”

“The problem in my life and other people’s lives is not the absence of knowing what to do but the absence of doing it.”

“Meetings are by definition a concession to a deficient organization.  For one either meets or one works.  One cannot do both at the same time.”

“So much of what we call management consists of making it difficult for people to work.”

“The best way to predict your future is to create it.”

“The only real difference between one organization and another is the performance of its people.”

“Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes; but no plans.”

“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”

“The better a man is, the more mistakes he will make, for the more things he will try.”

“There is an enormous number of managers who have retired on the job.”

“We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change.  And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.”

“It takes far less energy to move from first-rate performance to excellence than it does to move from incompetence to mediocrity.”

“Results are gained by exploiting opportunities, not by solving problems.”

“Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision.”

“There is nothing quite so useless as doing with great efficiency something that should not be done at all.”

“Long-range planning does not deal with the future decisions, but with the future of present decisions.”

“We know nothing about motivation.  All we can do is write books about it.”

“Time is the scarcest resource, and unless it is managed, nothing else can be managed.”

“All one has to do is to learn to say no if an activity contributes nothing.”

“My greatest strength as a consultant is to be ignorant and ask a few questions.”

“When a subject is totally obsolete we make it a required course.”

Knowledge has to be improved, challenged, and increased constantly, or it vanishes.”

“The really important things are said over cocktails and are never done.”

“The relevant question is not, ‘What shall we do tomorrow?’  But rather, ‘What shall we do today to get ready for tomorrow?'”

“What you have to do and the way you have to do it is incredibly simple.  Whether you are willing to do it, that’s another matter.”

“Plans are only good intentions… unless they immediately degenerate into hard work.”

“Everything requires time.  It is the only truly universal condition.  All work takes place in time and uses up time.  Yet most people take for granted this unique, irreplaceable, and necessary resource.  Nothing else, perhaps, distinguishes effective executives as much as their tender loving care of time.”

“The entrepreneur always searches for change, responds to it, and exploits it as an opportunity.”

“The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.”

“Concentration is the key to economic results.  No other principles of effectiveness is violated as constantly today as the basic principle of concentration.”

“The computer is a moron.”

“Only three things happen naturally in organizations: friction, confusion, and underperformance.  Everything else requires leadership.”

“Strategy is a commodity; execution is an art.”

“Quality in a product or service is not what the supplier puts in.  It is what the customer gets out and is willing to pay for.  A product is not quality because it is hard to make and costs a lot, as manufacturers believe.  This is incompetence.  Customers pay only for what is of use to them and gives them value.  Nothing else constitutes quality.”

“Culture eats strategy for breakfast.”

“Cultivate a deep understanding of yourself.  Not only what your strengths and weaknesses are but also how you learn, how you work with others, what your values are, and where you can make the greatest contribution.  Because only when you operate from strengths can you achieve true excellence.”

“There are two types of people in the business community: those who produce results and those who give you reasons why they didn’t.”

“There is the risk you cannot afford to take, and there is the risk you cannot afford not to take.”

“If you have more than five goals, you have none.”

“The only skill that will be important in the 21st century is the skill of learning new skills.  Everything else will become obsolete over time.”

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