I am pretty sure that there are more quotes about management on the internet than there are stars in our galaxy. Okay, that might be an exaggeration but there’s still no denying the fact that our world is flooded with tons of managerial quotes, jargon and philosophies.
Management is not rocket science. It is an art that is mastered through personal experience and observation. You can read every management book in the world but you need to look for firsthand experiences to master it. It is a baptism through fire.
The majority of management quotes that we read are nothing but common sense wrapped in glossy jargon. However, a few of them capture its essence and convey its meaning in a witty and straightforward manner. So I dug the vast realms of internet and found these ten management quotes. They inspired me and I hope they will inspire you too.
1. So much of what we call management consists in making it difficult for people to work. - Peter Drucker
Peter Drucker hits a bull’s eye here with this quote. Over decades of research, study and process of turning management into a discipline, somewhere down the line we have forgotten that management is anything but that. When you interact with people, you cannot use a preset assembly of theories to deal with them. It all comes down to understanding each other; which seems easy and too difficult at the same time.
2. To command is to serve, nothing more, nothing else. - Andre Malraux
This single quote separates despotism from leadership. When leaders command, they don’t do that for personal gains; they do that for a higher cause which is centered on the followers. A true leader places followers’ interests over his or her own.
3. Wise men though all laws are abolished, will lead the same lives. - Aristophenes
The managers don’t manage their team as part of conforming to the organizational structure; at least that’s not how they should look at it. Even if all the norms governing interpersonal relationships are removed in an organization, the way a manager goes about his daily business shouldn’t change. He should have the same affinity for his team and company.
4. The defining factor for success is never resources, it’s resourcefulness. - Tony Robbins
The dictionary definition of resourcefulness is the ability to act imaginatively and creatively in difficult situations. You might have access to priceless resources, but you still need to have the ability to utilize them in an effective manner. Apart from that, you need an environment which facilitates productive behavior. One notable example which comes to mind is the economy of DRC (formerly Zaire), which is the richest country in the world in terms of natural resources (approximately $ 24 trillion worth of raw material), but still remains one of the poorest countries in the world.
5. What’s measured improves. - Peter Drucker
Peter Drucker couldn’t have stated this one more clearly. If you can find a way to measure the discrepancy, quantify it; chances are you’ll end up solving it. Most businesses that fail turn a blind eye to their problems rather than analyzing them in an objective way.
6. Leaders can let you fail and not yet let you be a failure. - Stanley McChrista
Success doesn’t mean absence of failure. All good leaders understand that learning from your own mistakes is perhaps the most effective way of learning. They allow their teams to make mistakes and teach them to learn from past experiences.
7. When I have one week to solve a seemingly impossible problem, I spend six days defining the problem; then the solution becomes obvious. - Albert Einstein
A lot of managers are so eager to find the solution that sometimes they fail to understand the problem itself. The more specific the problem is, the easier it is to find its solution. Rather than hitting the panic button, it is always better to keep calm and understand the root of the problem.
8. Every threat to the status quo is an opportunity in disguise. – Jay Samit.
It’s a human tendency to resist change, mainly because of the ambiguity that follows it. However, every factor that causes a change in the current situation can be an opportunity if you plan for it. When computers were introduced in India on a large scale, many people were skeptical of their impact in a labor intensive environment. Little did they know that within two decades, IT sector would contribute almost 8% to the country’s GDP.
9. The conventional definition of management is getting work done through people, but real management is developing people through work. – Agha Hasan Abedi
Why do we do business, create products and services? Is it to get better numbers on a piece of paper or is it to enrich the lives of people? Managers should always remember that business is all about people. Enhancing the lives of your team should be the ultimate objective for every manager.
10. No man is good enough to govern another man without that other’s consent. - Abraham Lincoln
Here Abraham Lincoln stresses the importance of followership in management. Management is as much about the acceptance of leadership as it is about leadership. You can be the most informed manager in the world, but you can’t succeed in managing people unless they willingly accept your authority.
As always, we encourage you to give feedback. What’s your take on leadership? What do you think is the essence of management? Feel free to let us know.