Inspirational Quotes from Marshall Goldsmith

By | July 10, 2016

One of the most important actions, things a leader can do, is to lead by example. If you want everyone else to be passionate, committed, dedicated, and motivated, you go first!

Marshall Goldsmith

The last thing I say on most phone calls is not, ‘Goodbye,’ but, ‘Thank you.’

Marshall Goldsmith

All of us have people in our lives who drive us crazy. We’ve spent hours reliving the unfair, unappreciative, inconsiderate treatment they have inflicted on us. But getting mad at this person makes just about as much sense as getting mad at a chair for being a chair.

Marshall Goldsmith

Gratitude is not a limited resource, nor is it costly. It is abundant as air. We breathe it in but forget to exhale.

Marshall Goldsmith

Life is short. Do whatever you can to help people – not for status, but because the 95-year-old you will be proud if you did help people and disappointed if you didn’t.

Marshall Goldsmith

If we become aware of what’s happening before we act, behaviour becomes a function of choice rather than a result of an impulse or trigger. You begin to control your world more as opposed to the outside world controlling you.

Marshall Goldsmith

Put your goals on paper, or an Excel spreadsheet. Measure every day, ‘Did I do my best to…?’ Your problems won’t disappear, but you will exist in a different relation to them, and you will improve.

Marshall Goldsmith

To me, the #1 key to success is ‘creating lasting positive change in yourself and others.’ That is what is most rare, most difficult, and most valuable about leading people.

Marshall Goldsmith

Active questions are the alternative to passive questions. There is a huge difference between, ‘Do you have clear goals?’ and ‘Did you do your best to set clear goals for yourself?’ The former is trying to determine the employee’s state of mind; the latter challenges the employee to describe or defend a course of action.

Marshall Goldsmith

Our inner beliefs trigger failure before it happens. They sabotage lasting change by canceling its possibility. We employ these beliefs as articles of faith to justify our inaction and then wish away the result. I call them belief triggers.

Marshall Goldsmith

I regard gratitude as an asset and its absence a major interpersonal flaw.

Marshall Goldsmith

I have a lot of deficiencies, but gratitude is not one of them.

Marshall Goldsmith

We deify willpower and self-control – and mock its absence. People who achieve through remarkable willpower are ‘strong’ and ‘heroic.’ People who need help or structure are ‘weak.’ This is crazy – because few of us can accurately gauge or predict our willpower.

Marshall Goldsmith

A leader who is self-aware enough to know that he or she is not adept at everything is one who has taken the first step toward being a great leader.

Marshall Goldsmith

The people I coach are very successful people, so it’s very hard for winners to not constantly win. Even if it’s trivial and not worth it, we still want to win – because we love winning. It’s a very deep habit.

Marshall Goldsmith

Once you get a reputation for emotional volatility, it can take years of model behavior to change how others see you.

Marshall Goldsmith

When we presume that we are better than people who need structure and guidance, we lack one of the most crucial ingredients for change: humility.

Marshall Goldsmith

If somebody is going in the wrong direction, behavioral coaching just helps them get there faster. It doesn’t turn the wrong direction into the right direction.

Marshall Goldsmith

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve gotten simpler – my level of aspiration has actually gone down and down. But my level of impact has gone up and up.

Marshall Goldsmith

One of the greatest mistakes of successful people is the assumption, ‘I behave this way, and I achieve results. Therefore, I must be achieving results because I behave this way.’ This belief is sometimes true, but not across the board.

Marshall Goldsmith

Be happy now. It’s a great Western disease that we’ll be happy in the future – when we get higher status or that BMW or that promotion or this project finished. Instead, be happy now.

Marshall Goldsmith

I do three things: speaking or teaching, which I enjoy the most, coaching is where I learn everything, and writing is where I reach people.

Marshall Goldsmith

An excuse is the handy explanation we offer when we disappoint other people.

Marshall Goldsmith

Americans get fatter and fatter and buy more and more diet books, but you don’t lose weight by buying diet books – you go on a diet. It’s easy to read a diet book, but it’s hard to go on a diet.

Marshall Goldsmith

In our world, we have this huge focus on vicarious living – politicians, movie stars, athletes, coaches, all these people. What our research has shown very clearly is that people who are really happier and have more meaningful lives are people that focus on living their own lives.

Marshall Goldsmith

People that have integrity violations should be fired, not coached. How many integrity violations does it take to ruin the reputation of your company? Just one. You don’t coach integrity violations. You fire them.

Marshall Goldsmith

In our world, we have this huge focus on vicarious living – politicians, movie stars, athletes, coaches, all these people. What our research has shown very clearly is that people who are really happier and have more meaningful lives are people that focus on living their own lives.

Marshall Goldsmith

People that have integrity violations should be fired, not coached. How many integrity violations does it take to ruin the reputation of your company? Just one. You don’t coach integrity violations. You fire them.

Marshall Goldsmith

Coaching works best with high potential people who are willing to make a concerted effort to change, not as a religious conversion activity.

Marshall Goldsmith

If the CEO is not going to give you a fair chance, you’re probably not going to win.

Marshall Goldsmith

I don’t get paid if my clients don’t get better by a certain time period. And sure, I have not been paid before. We all fail sometimes; it’s okay.

Marshall Goldsmith

One of the most dysfunctional beliefs of successful people is our contempt for simplicity and structure. We believe that we are above needing structure to help us on seemingly simple tasks.

Marshall Goldsmith

When we stop thinking about ourselves, when we stop being so devoted to ‘me,’ we can start behaving in a way that actually benefits others!

Marshall Goldsmith

If we can sacrifice something comfortable, that we’re ‘too good at,’ that might even be holding us back, we’ll have more room to grow into the person we want to be.

Marshall Goldsmith

When we prolong negative behavior – the kind that hurts the people we love or the kind that hurts us in some way – we are leading a changeless life in the most hazardous manner. We are willfully choosing to be miserable and making others miserable, too.

Marshall Goldsmith

If we really want to make change, we have to make peace with the fact that we cannot self-exempt every time the calendar offers us a more attractive alternative.

Marshall Goldsmith

Remember that when criticism is difficult to accept, there is probably some truth to it.

Marshall Goldsmith

I was at UCLA when John Wooden was the basketball coach. The next coach was Gene Bartow, who got fired for winning 90 percent plus of his games. He wasn’t John Wooden. It’s incredibly difficult to replace someone who has been seen as an icon.

Marshall Goldsmith

The only thing I don’t think people don’t understand about good leaders is that they’re both good and lucky. A lot of it is timing.

Marshall Goldsmith

It’s not appropriate to pass judgment when we specifically ask people to voice their opinions… even if you ask a question and agree with the answer.

Marshall Goldsmith

Understanding the past is perfectly admissible if your issue is accepting the past. But if your issue is changing the future, understanding will not take you there.

Marshall Goldsmith

When you say, ‘I’m sorry,’ you turn people into your allies, even your partners.

Marshall Goldsmith

My job is to show my clients that their anger is rarely someone else’s fault. It’s their flaw.

Marshall Goldsmith

It can be more productive to help people learn to be ‘right’ than prove they were ‘wrong.’

Marshall Goldsmith

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