Elon Musk Quotes to Defeat Obstacles and Inspire Innovation

By Last Updated: Leadership, Quotes Leave a comment
Elon Musk, SpaceX Chief Engineer, speaks with NASA International Space Station Program Manger Kirk Shireman, after the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket

These Elon Musk quotes will help you breakthrough obstacles and inspire innovation.

Elon Musk is one of the most influential CEOs and thinkers of our time.

His work with Tesla, SpaceX and The Boring Company are setting the stage for changes that will ripple through the future.

When he has something to say, people listen because what he says adds value to the world.

It’s why quotes by Elon Musk are so popular and plentiful!

Elon Musk quotes are inspiring

Elon Musk’s approach to being inventive has been a source of inspirational fuel for many entrepreneurs and dreamers alike.

His wise words encourage us to look beyond what’s available to us and use our imaginations to solve problems that may not have easy or immediate solutions.

Take a look at some of his most famous quotes to see how he’s inspiring people and spurring innovation in the world today.

1. “Really liking what you do…whatever area that you get into, even if you’re the best of the best, there’s always a chance of failure. So, I think it’s important that you really like whatever you’re doing, if you don’t like it, life is too short. If you like what you’re doing, you think about it even when you’re not working, it’s something that your mind is drawn to. And if you don’t like it, you really just can’t make it work.” — Elon Musk

Among the most motivational words from Elon Musk are these, which encourage us to do what we love and love what we do.

His reasoning is simple: When you have a passion for the things you’re doing, you’ll want to do them and enjoy making the most of them.

If you’re truly invested in solving a problem or making a product, there’s no way you can fail!

When your heart is in it, success is bound to follow.

2. “If you’re trying to create a company, it’s like baking a cake. You have to have all the ingredients in the right proportion.” — Elon Musk

Elon Musk quotes like this one are telling of how he rose to be one of the greatest CEOs of our time.

His ability to start and run companies comes from his focus on having all of the right ingredients.

Guiding the next generation of businesses

Teaching up-and-coming business owners through his wise words, Elon has been both an indirect and direct helping hand in guiding the next generation of businesses.

3. “Great companies are built on great products.” — Elon Musk

For entrepreneurs looking for inspirational words to build their business on, they need look no further than this quote from Musk.

It sums up everything that needs to be said about a good company.

A company that takes pride in the product it offers is one that will be successful.

Producing a good product means generating demand for quality, and that’s something anyone can get behind and be successful in.

4. “Persistence is very important. You should not give up unless you are forced to give up.” — Elon Musk

One of the best Elon Musk quotes, this one inspires perseverance and patience: Two of the fundamental traits needed for success in the cutthroat world of business.

The drive to succeed

If you don’t have the drive to succeed and the will to overcome, you won’t—it’s as simple as that.

Musk has experienced success enough to know what it takes to get there, and quotes like this are his way of passing on sound advice about what it takes to succeed.

5. “It’s OK to have your eggs in one basket as long as you control what happens to that basket.” — Elon Musk

This is an inspirational example of how Musk goes against the grain of traditional thinking.

We’ve all heard the phrase “don’t put all your eggs in one basket,” as a way to protect yourself from losing it all.

Go ALL in!

The key to succeeding and protecting yourself from loss is to protect the basket, not the eggs.

6. “I think it is possible for ordinary people to choose to be extraordinary.” — Elon Musk

Elon Musk quotes like this one argue that exceptionalism isn’t something that can be born and bred—it’s something we aspire to attain.

We’re in control of our actions and decisions, and we dictate our own work ethic.

These things will make us extraordinary above all else

And the best part is, no matter who you are or what your background is, when you decide to do great things, you will.

7. “When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor.” — Elon Musk

Looking for motivational words to keep you focused and on-track for success?

This quote from Musk reminds us that anything worth doing is something we shouldn’t wait to do.

Even if you’re up against the odds and the chances of success are slim to none, if it’s important to you, it’s always worth doing.

8. “Failure is an option here. If things are not failing, you are not innovating enough.” — Elon Musk

Again, going against the grain is a common theme among inspirational Elon Musk quotes.

This time, Musk says that instead of “failure is not an option,” it is!

Failing is a learning lesson and not the end

You can fail as much as you need to in order to get things right.

And, if you’re continually innovating, you’re going to keep failing.

It’s a learning process that requires constant evaluation.

Musk argues that failure is good because it breeds perfection.

9. “People work better when they know what the goal is and why. It is important that people look forward to coming to work in the morning and enjoy working.” — Elon Musk

Many Elon Musk quotes discuss the importance of being open and honest about what you’re trying to achieve—both with yourself and with others.

When you’re clear and honest about what you’re trying to achieve, everyone is on the same page and the expectation is clear for everyone.

Elon Musk on leadership

If you’re going to be a leader, keep this quote in mind when it comes to setting the standard for success.

10. “My biggest mistake is probably weighing too much on someone’s talent and not someone’s personality. I think it matters whether someone has a good heart.” — Elon Musk

Elon Musk quotes on leadership like this one encourage us to evaluate everything about a person when we’re choosing to work with them.

More than just their talent or their means, we need to see what kind of a person we’re doing business with.

Can we trust them?

Do they have good intentions?

Are they honest?

Looking beyond the skill to the person can yield another level of insight about what you can expect from them.

11. “Work like hell. I mean you just have to put in 80 to 100 hour weeks every week. [This] improves the odds of success. If other people are putting in 40 hour workweeks and you’re putting in 100 hour workweeks, then even if you’re doing the same thing, you know that you will achieve in four months what it takes them a year to achieve.” — Elon Musk

Elon Musk quotes about success are powerful because they put us being the mind of one of the age’s greatest thinkers.

Quotes like this one show us what lengths someone like Musk will go to in order to be successful, and his words have the power to inspire us towards our own success.

If you’re willing to put your nose to the grindstone, you’ll be rewarded with success sooner and more frequently than someone who isn’t willing to work as hard.

12. “Really pay attention to negative feedback and solicit it, particularly from friends…Hardly anyone does that, and it’s incredibly helpful.” — Elon Musk

No one wants to hear negative things about themselves.

The truth is, negativity can be motivational

When we know what our shortcomings are or what people perceive to be our failures, we can use them to our advantage.

Turning your flaws into assets and your failures into successes starts by understanding what they are.

13. “If you get up in the morning and think the future is going to be better, it is a bright day. Otherwise, it’s not.” — Elon Musk

This is a simple, inspirational example of how someone like Elon Musk thinks.

Capturing success is as simple as deciding today is going to be a good day.

That mindset and attitude makes a world of difference in how you perceive life and what you make of it.

Looking forward with optimism in your heart and mind can have a profound impact on what the future shapes up to be for you.

14. “Don’t delude yourself into thinking something’s working when it’s not, or you’re gonna get fixated on a bad solution.” — Elon Musk

This, among all Elon Musk quotes, might be the most important.

Realizing when something isn’t working or when the theory is bad is the first step in avoiding a negative outcome.

If you can recognize when you’re wrong and cut your losses, you’ll avoid the pain that comes with a bad outcome you’ve invested yourself in.

A great mind

Elon Musk is certainly one of the greatest minds of our generation and he has an immense amount of wisdom to share.

We hope you were inspired by the above Elon Musk quotes, which are part of our inspiring entrepreneur quotes series.

What are the best Elon Musk quotes you know? Share them with us in the comments below to inspire others to find the same positivity you’re working toward!

Image credit: NASA/Joel Kowsky / Public domain

Read Next: Failure is Not an Option Quotes Remind Us to Get Back Up

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