Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Seth Godin

American Author, Entrepreneur, Marketer and Public Speaker

"100 people doing something at the same time has far more power than 300 people doing it over time."

"A bully is playing a game, one that he or she enjoys and needs. You're welcome to play this game if it makes you happy, but for most people, it will make you miserable."

"A brilliant author or businesswoman or senator or software engineer is brilliant only in teeny bursts. The rest of the time, they?re doing work that most any trained person could do."

"A fundamentalist is a person who considers whether a fact is acceptable to his religion before he explores it. As opposed to a curious person who explores first then considers whether or not he wants to accept the ramifications. A curious person embraces the tension between his religion and something new, wrestles with it and through it, and then decides whether to embrace the new idea or reject it."

"A change in attitude: What separates successful people from those who languish is exactly what separates the innovative and growing those organizations stagnate and die. The winners have turned the initiative into a passion and practice. Go ahead, make a list of people and organizations that you admire. I bet the seventh imperative is what makes them stand out. You see, the challenge is not to improve your ability to know when to start or when to stay out, but take the usual start."

"A genius looks at something that others are stuck on and gets the world unstuck. So the question is: Have you ever done that?"

"A crowd is a tribe without a leader."

"A gift always creates a surplus as it spreads."

"A movement is thrilling. It?s the work of many people, all connected, all seeking something better."

"A long walk and calm conversation are an incredible combination if you want to build a bridge."

"A great use of the connection economy is to put together circles of people who challenge each other to be wronger and wronger still ? until we find right."

"A transaction, even-steven, pushes people apart. A gift creates an imbalance; it strengthens the tribe; it moves the game forward."

"A lifetime spent noticing begins to turn into the ability to see what others can't."

"A tribe is a group of people connected to one another, connected to a leader, and connected to an idea. For millions of years, human beings have been part of one tribe or another. A group needs only two things to be a tribe: a shared interest and a way to communicate."

"A product for everyone rarely reaches much of anyone."

"A woodpecker can tap twenty times on a thousand trees and get nowhere, but stay busy. Or he can tap twenty-thousand times on one tree and get dinner."

"A woodpecker can tap 20 times on 1,000 trees & get nowhere, but stay busy. Or he can tap 20,000 times on 1 tree & get dinner."

"Abandoning your worldview in order to try on someone else?s is the first step in being able to see things as they are."

"Acknowledge to yourself that the factory job is dead. Having a factory job is not a natural state. It wasn?t at the heart of being human until very recently. We?ve been culturally brainwashed."

"Advertising is just a symptom, a tactic. Marketing is about far more than that."

"All around you are platforms, opportunities, and entire organizations that will come to life once you are driven enough and brave enough to contribute the initiative they are missing."

"All marketers are storytellers. Only the losers are liars."

"All one has to do to understand new marketing is to start a blog. Write stuff that people want to read instead of dictating to them. You learn the lesson quickly!"

"All our successes are the same. All our failures, too. We succeed when we do something remarkable. We fail when we give up too soon. We succeed when we are the best in the world at what we do. We fail when we get distracted by task we don?t have the guts to quit."

"After people have ?enough? what they crave is dignity."

"All of us are geniuses sometimes. The tragedy is that our society keeps drumming the genius part out."

"All great programmers learn the same way. They poke the box. They code something and see what the computer does. They change it and see what the computer does. They repeat the process again and again until they figure out how the box works."

"All the creativity books in the world aren?t going to help you if you?re unwilling to have lousy, lame and even dangerously bad ideas."

"An artist is someone who does something for the first time, something human, something that touches another."

"Almost no one goes home eagerly anticipating junk mail in their mailbox. Almost no one read People magazine for the ads. Almost no one looks forward to a three-minute commercial interruption on must see TV. Advertising is not why we pay attention. Yet marketers must make us pay attention for the ads to work. If they don't interrupt our train of thought by planting some sort of seed in our conscious or subconscious, the ads fail. Wasted money. If an ad falls in the forest and no one notices, there is no ad."

"Almost all growth that?s available to you exists when you aren?t like most people and when you work hard to appeal to folks who aren?t most people."

"Anatomy of a Movement: Senator Bill Bradley defines a movement as having three elements: (1) A narrative that tells a story about who we are and the future we're trying to build. (2) A connection between and among the leader and the tribe. (3) Something to do - the fewer limits the better. Too often organizations fail to do anything but the third."

"An individual artist needs only a thousand true fans in her tribe. It's enough."

"An artist is someone who uses bravery, insight, creativity, and boldness to challenge the status quo. And an artist takes it personally. That's why Bob Dylan is an artist, but an anonymous corporate hack who dreams up Pop 40 hits on the other side of the glass is merely a marketer. That's why Tony Hsieh, founder of Zappos, is an artist, while a boiler room of telemarketers is simply a scam. Tom Peters, corporate gadfly and writer, is an artist, even though his readers are businesspeople. He's an artist because he takes a stand, he takes the work personally, and he doesn't care if someone disagrees. His art is part of him, and he feels compelled to share it with you because it's important, not because he expects you to pay him for it."

"And yet the real success goes to those who obsess. The focus that leads you through the Dip to the other side is rewarded by a marketplace in search of the best in the world. A woodpecker can tap twenty times on a thousand trees and get nowhere, but stay busy. Or he can tap twenty-thousand times on one tree and get dinner."

"And it?s this between-the-frame action that makes poking the box so powerful. Action is easy once you have a plan. Formulating a plan, however, is a rare and valuable skill."

"Anticipated, personal and relevant advertising always does better than unsolicited junk"

"Anil Dash has discovered that having ten times as many Twitter followers generates approximately zero times as much value. The goal shouldn?t be to have a lot of people to yell at, the goal probably should be to have a lot of people who choose to listen. Don?t need a bullhorn for that."

"And it turns out that tribes, not money, not factories, that can change our world, that can change politics, that can align large numbers of people. Not because you force them to do something against their will. But because they wanted to connect."

"Anxiety is needless and imaginary. It?s fear about fear, fear that means nothing."

"Anxiety doesn?t protect you from danger, but from doing great things."

"Any project worth doing involves invention, inspiration, and at least a little bit of making stuff up."

"Anxiety is nothing but repeatedly re-experiencing failure in the future."

"Anyone who says failure is not an option has also ruled out innovation."

"Any project, if broken down into sufficiently small, predictable parts, can be accomplished for awfully close to free."

"Apple has already crossed that Dip, big time. Not the ?personal computer Dip? but the Dip of ?style-conscious, designer?s, multimedia, student, family computer.? They?re the best in the world at that. They own it. They profit from it. Sure, if Steve hadn?t been arrogant, they could have been best in the world at a much bigger, much juicier market. But they?re not. Once they deal with that?and I think they mostly have?then they can erect a wall behind them, a bigger dip, one that prevents others from following. Over time, personal computers become a profitless commodity while Apple?s market just gets sexier, more fun, and more profitable."

"Are you chasing or being chased? Are you leading or following? Are you fleeing or climbing?"

"Are you a serial idea-starting person? The goal is to be an idea-shipping person."

"Apple and other are laying the groundwork for a generation of job creation ? but not exclusively by big companies. They create environment where people like you can create jobs instead."

"Art changes posture and posture changes innocent bystanders."