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Decision Making Quotes


Top 50 Decision Making Quotes


No 1 (Best quote!)Decision Making Quotes

No decision can be better than the people who have to carry it out.

- Peter Drucker, pictured right, in Practice of Management (1954)


In Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices (1973), Drucker also said:

The effective decision maker...organizes dissent.



No 2Decision Making Quotes

When you cannot make up your mind which of two evenly balanced courses of action you should take, choose the bolder.

- William (Bill) Slim (1891-1970), leader of the British army in Burma 1943-5, pictured right.



Decision Making Quotes

No 3

We only think when we are confronted with problems,

- John Dewey (1859-1952), American educational philosopher, pictured right.

 Decision Making Quotes

Henry Kaiser (1882-1967), the American businessman, pictured right, also comments:

Problems are only opportunities in work clothes.

 Decision Making Quotes

Stephen Covey, pictured right, in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (1989) adds:

The way we see the problem is the problem.



No 4Decision Making Quotes

There are two things to be considered with regard to any scheme... is it good in itself?...can it be easily put into practice?”

- Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-78) Swiss philosopher, pictured right.



No 5Decision Making Quotes

We must take things as we find them, and not as we wish them to be.

- Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821), pictured right, French leader.

 Decision Making Quotes

Albert Einstein (1879-1955), German-born American scientist,pictured right, says something similar:

A man should look for what is, and not for what he thinks should be.



No 6Decision Making Quotes

Truly successful decision making relies on a balance between deliberate and instinctive thinking.

-Malcolm Gladwell, pictured right, in Blink (2005)



No 7Decision Making Quotes

A wrong decision isn't forever; it can always be reversed. The losses from a delayed decision are forever; they can never be retrieved.

- J. K. Galbraith (1908–2006). Canadian economist, pictured right.



No 8Decision Making Quotes

If things are to move upward, someone must take the first step and assume the risk of it.

- William James (1842–1910), American philosopher, pictured right.



No 9Decision Making Quotes

Today’s problems come from yesterday’s solutions.

-Peter Senge, pictured right, in The Fifth Discipline (1990)



No10Decision Making Quotes

The heart has its reasons which reason knows nothing of.

- Blaise Pascal (1623–62) French scientist and philosopher, pictured right.



No 11Decision Making Quotes

It isn't that they can't see the solution. It is that they can't see the problem.

- G. K. Chesterton (1874–1936), English writer, pictured right.



No 12Decision Making Quotes

The best decision makers are willing to suffer the most over their decisions but still retain the ability to be decisive.

-M. Scott Peck (1936-2005), American psychiatrist, pictured right.



No 13Decision Making Quotes

There is no harm in being sometimes wrong - especially if one is promptly found out.

- John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946), English economist, pictured right..


Keynes also comments:

It’s better to be roughly right than precisely wrong.



No 14Decision Making Quotes

Action is eloquence.

(Corialanus in Corialanus)

- William Shakespeare (1564-1616), English playwright, pictured right


Two other thinkers agree:

 Decision Making Quotes

One’s feelings waste themselves in words. They ought to be distilled into actions and into actions which bring results,

- Florence Nightingale (1820-1910), the English nurse,pictured right

 Decision Making Quotes

Human beings ... must have action; and they will make it, if they cannot find it.

(Jane in Jane Eyre)

- Charlotte Brontë (1816-55), English writer, pictured right



No 15Decision Making Quotes

Good reasons must of force give place to better.

(Brutus in Julius Caesar)

- William Shakespeare (1564-1616), English playwright, pictured right



No 16Decision Making Quotes

We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.

- Albert Einstein (1879-1955) German-born American scientist, pictured right.



No 17Decision Making Quotes

Effective decision makers are distinguished not so much by the superior extent of their knowledge as by the recognition of its limitations.

John Kay, pictured right, Obliquity (2010)

 Decision Making Quotes


No 18

Delay is preferable to error

- Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) American president, pictured right above.

Decision Making Quotes

J. R. R. Tolkien (pictured right) in The Lord of the Rings agrees:

Short cuts make long delays (said by Pippin)



No 19Decision Making Quotes

It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, it is because we do not dare that they are difficult.

- Seneca (4BC-65 AD) Greek philosopher, pictured right.



No 20Decision Making Quotes

Things do not happen. They are made to happen.

- John F. Kennedy (1917-63) American president, pictured right.

 Decision Making Quotes

No 21

Choices are the hinges of destiny.

- Pythagoras (c.570-495 BC),Greek philosopher, pictured right.



No 22Decision Making Quotes

History teaches us that men and nations behave wisely once they have exhausted all other alternatives,

- Abba Eban 1915– 2002) Israeli diplomat, pictured right.



No 23Decision Making Quotes

The man who is denied the opportunity of taking decisions of importance begins to regard as important the decisions he is allowed to take.

- C. Northcote Parkinson 1909–93 English writer, pictured right.



No 24Decision Making Quotes

Not only is there but one way of doing things rightly, but there is only one way of seeing them, and that is, seeing the whole of them.

- John Ruskin (1819–1900), English writer and philosopher, pictured right.



No 25Decision Making Quotes

Facts alone are wanted in life,

(Thomas Gradgrind in Hard Times, 1854).

- Charles Dickens (1812-70), English writer, pictured right


Three other thinkers also emphasize the importance of facts:

 Decision Making Quotes

Facts are to the mind what food is to the body.

- Edmund Burke (1729-97), pictured right,  the Irish-born British Member of Parliament

 Decision Making Quotes

When the facts change, I change my mind. 

- John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946), English economist, pictured right.

 Decision Making Quotes

Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that’s even remotely true!

- Homer Simpson, American cartoon character, pictured right,



No 26Decision Making Quotes

Divide each difficulty into an many parts as is feasible and necessary to resolve it.

- René Descartes (1596-1650), French philosopher, pictured right.



No 27Decision Making Quotes

But above all try something.

- Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), American president, pictured right.



No 28Decision Making Quotes

All my life, whenever it comes time to make a decision, I make it and forget about it.

- Harry S. Truman (1884-1972), American president, pictured right,


No 29Decision Making Quotes

The only real failure in life is not to be true to the best one knows.

- Gautama Buddha (563-483 BC), founder of Buddhism, pictured right.



No 30Decision Making Quotes

Risk comes from not knowing what you are doing,

- Warren Buffett (1930-), American share investor, pictured right.



No 31Decision Making Quotes

Bedside manners are no substitute for the right diagnosis.

- Alfred Sloan (1875-1966), American boss of General Motors 1923-46, pictured right, .



No 32Decision Making Quotes

You have to pretend you’re 100 percent sure. You have to take action; you can’t hesitate or hedge your bets.

- Andrew Grove (1936- ), American boss of Intel,1987-98, pictured right, .



No 33Decision Making Quotes

I am here to make decisions, and whether they prove right or wrong, I am going to make them,

- Harry S. Truman (1884-1972), American president, pictured right, .



No 34Decision Making Quotes

If you don’t take risks, you won’t achieve anything.

- Richard Branson (1950- ), English founder of Virgin, pictured right, .



No 35Decision Making Quotes

To delay action is the same as death,

- Lenin (1870-1924), pictured right, Russian leader



No 36Decision Making Quotes

There is only one quality worse than hardness of heart and that is softness of head.

- Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919), pictured right, American president



No 37Decision Making Quotes

Take risks. Ask big questions. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes; if you don’t make mistakes, you’re not reaching far enough.

- David Packard (1912-96), American co-founder of Hewlett-Packard (HP), pictured right,



No 38Decision Making Quotes

All business proceeds on beliefs, or judgements of probabilities, and not on certainties.

- William (Bill) Hewlett (1919-2001), American co-founder of Hewlett-Packard (HP), pictured right.



No 39Decision Making Quotes

Don’t be afraid to make a mistake. But make sure you don’t make the same mistake twice.

- Akio Morita (1921-1999), co-founder of Sony, pictured right,



No 40Decision Making Quotes

The ancestor of every action is a thought.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), American writer and philosopher, pictured right,



No 41Decision Making Quotes

A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence.

- David Hume (1711-76), Scottish philosopher,pictured right.



No 42Decision Making Quotes

The problems can be solved, not by giving new information, but by arranging what we have always known.

- Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951), Austrian-born British philosopher, pictured right.



No 43Decision Making Quotes

You must do the things you think you cannot do.

- Eleanor Roosevelt (1884–1962) American civil rights campaigner, pictured right.



No 44Decision Making Quotes

The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook.

- William James (1842-1910), American psychologist and philosopher, pictured right.



No 45Decision Making Quotes

Take nothing on its looks, take everything on evidence,

(Mr. Jaggers in Great Expectations)

- Charles Dickens (1812-70), pictured right, English novelist



No 46Decision Making Quotes

Colonel Cathcart was indefatigable that way, an industrious, intense, dedicated military tactician who calculated day and night in the service of himself.

(from Catch-22)

- Joseph Heller (1923-99), American writer, pictured right.



No 47Decision Making Quotes

It's the job that's never started as takes longest to finish,

(Sam in The Lord of the Rings)

- J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973), English writer, pictured right



No 48Decision Making Quotes

The art of our necessities is strange and can make vile things precious,

(King Lear in King Lear)

 - William Shakespeare (1564-1616), English playwright, pictured right



No 49Decision Making Quotes

The quality of any decision depends very much on the alternatives that are available to the decision maker.

- Edward de Bono, pictured right, Six Thinking Hats (1985)



No 50Decision Making Quotes

Our world is dominated by the extreme, the unknown, and the very improbable,

- Nassim Nicholas Taleb, pictured right, in The Black Swan (2007)



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