50+ Elon Musk Quotes for Inspiration

Short Biography

  • Elon Musk is best known as the founder and part-owner of Tesla Motors and SpaceX. He is an American entrepreneur and businessman born in South Africa. He founded X.com in 1999, which later became PayPal, SpaceX in 2002, and Tesla Motors in 2003.
  • AKA: Elon Reeve Musk, Elon Musk
  • Birthday: June 28, 1971
  • Birthplace: Pretoria, Transvaal, South Africa
  • Educated At: The Wharton School, Pretoria Boys High School, Queen’s School of Business, University Of Pennsylvania School Of Arts And Sciences, Waterkloof House Preparatory School
  • Nationality: United States of America, South Africa, Canada
  • Occupations: Entrepreneur, Engineer, Inventor, Investor, Chairperson
  • Spouse: Talulah Riley

Elon Musk Quotes - I think ordinary people can choose to be extraordinary.

The Best Elon Musk Quotes

  • A company is a group organized to create a product or service. It is only as good as its people and how excited they are about creating. I do want to recognize a ton of super-talented people. I just happen to be the face of the companies.
  • As much as possible, avoid hiring MBAs. MBA programs don’t teach people how to create companies.
  • Being an entrepreneur is like eating glass and staring into the abyss of death.
  • A brand is just a perception, and perception will match reality over time. Sometimes it will be ahead; other times, it will be behind. But a brand is simply a collective impression some have about a product.
  • Disruptive technology where you really have a big technology discontinuity… tends to come from new companies.
  • Don’t delude yourself into thinking something’s working when it’s not, or you’re gonna get fixated on a bad solution.
  • A failure is an option here. If things are not failing, you are not innovating enough.

Elon Musk Quotes - The first step is to establish that something is possible; then probability will occur.

  • I always have optimism, but I’m realistic. It was not with the expectation of great success that I started Tesla or SpaceX… It’s just that I thought they were important enough to do anyway.
  • I constantly invest my own money in the companies that I create…. I’m not going to ask other people to invest in something if I’m not prepared to do so myself.
  • I could either watch it happen or be a part of it.
  • I think there are many potentials if you have a compelling product and people are willing to pay a premium for that. I believe that is what Apple has shown. You can buy a much cheaper cell phone or laptop, but Apple’s product is so much better than the alternative, and people are willing to pay that premium.
  • I don’t spend time pontificating about high-concept things; I spend my time-solving engineering and manufacturing problems.
  • I don’t believe in the process. In fact, when I interview a potential employee, and they say that ‘it’s all about the process,’ I see that as a bad sign. The problem is that the process becomes a substitute for thinking at many big companies. You’re encouraged to behave like a bit of gear in a complex machine. Frankly, it allows you to keep people who aren’t that smart, who aren’t that creative.
  • I don’t create companies to create companies but to get things done.
  • I don’t think it’s a good idea to plan to sell a company.

Elon Musk Quotes - I could either watch it happen or be a part of it.

  • I say something, and then it usually happens. Maybe not on schedule, but it usually happens.
  • I think ordinary people can choose to be extraordinary.
  • I think it’s very important to have a feedback loop, where you’re constantly thinking about what you’ve done and how you could be doing it better.
  • I think most of the important stuff on the Internet has been built. There will be continued innovation, for sure, but the significant problems of the Internet have essentially been solved.
  • I think the best way to attract venture capital is to try and come up with a demonstration of whatever product or service it is and ideally take that as far as you can. Then, just see if you can sell that to real customers and generate some momentum. The further along you can get with that, the more likely you will get funding.
  • I think we have a duty to maintain the light of consciousness to make sure it continues into the future.
  • I would just question things… It would infuriate my parents… That I wouldn’t just believe them when they said something ’cause I’d ask them why. And then I’d consider whether that response made sense given everything else I knew.

Elon Musk Quotes - If you get up in the morning and think the future will be better, it is a bright day. Otherwise, it's not.

  • I wouldn’t say I have a lack of fear. In fact, I’d like my fear emotion to be less because it’s very distracting and fries my nervous system.
  • Suppose something has to be designed and invented, and you have to figure out how to ensure that the value of the thing you create is greater than the cost of the inputs. In that case, that is probably my core skill.
  • If you get up in the morning and think the future will be better, it is a bright day. Otherwise, it’s not.
  • If you go back a few hundred years, what we take for granted today would seem like magic-being able to talk to people over long distances, to transmit images, flying, accessing vast amounts of data like an oracle. These are all things that would have been considered magic a few hundred years ago.
  • If you’re co-founder or CEO, you have to do all kinds of tasks you might not want to do… If you don’t do your chores, the company won’t succeed… No task is too menial.
  • If you’re trying to create a company, it’s like baking a cake. First, you have to have all the ingredients in the right proportion.
  • I’m interested in things that change the world or affect the future and wondrous, new technology where you see it, and you’re like, ‘Wow, how did that even happen? How is that possible?’
  • Hiring considerable people to get a complicated job done is a mistake. Numbers will never compensate for talent in getting the right answer (two people who don’t know something are no better than one), will tend to slow down progress, and will make the task incredibly expensive.

Elon Musk Quotes - It's OK to have your eggs in one basket as long as you control what happens to that basket.

  • It’s OK to have your eggs in one basket as long as you control what happens to that basket.
  • It’s essential to like the people you work with; otherwise, life [and] your job will be pretty miserable.
  • I’ve actually not read any books on time management.
  • 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.
  • People should pursue what they’re passionate about. That will make them happier than pretty much anything else.
  • People work better when they know what the goal is and why. Therefore, it is important that people look forward to coming to work in the morning and enjoy working.
  • Persistence is very important. You should not give up unless you are forced to give up.

Elon Musk Quotes - Some people don't like change, but you need to embrace change if the alternative is a disaster.

  • Really pay attention to negative feedback and solicit it, particularly from friends. … Hardly anyone does that, and it’s incredibly helpful.
  • Some people don’t like change, but you need to embrace change if the alternative is a disaster.
  • Starting and growing a business is as much about the innovation, drive, and determination of the people behind it as the product they sell.
  • Talent is essential. It’s like a sports team; the team that has the best individual player will often win, but then there’s a multiplier from how those players work together and the strategy they employ.
  • The first step is to establish that something is possible; then probability will occur.
  • The path to the CEO’s office should not be through the CFO’s office, and it should not be through the marketing department. It needs to be through engineering and design.
  • There are really two things that have to occur in order for a new technology to be affordable to the mass market. One is you need economies of scale. The other is you need to iterate on the design. So you need to go through a few versions.

Elon Musk Quotes - It's essential to like the people you work with; otherwise, life and your job will be pretty miserable.

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  • There have to be reasons that you get up in the morning, and you want to live. Why do you want to live? What’s the point? What inspires you? What do you love about the future? I find that incredibly depressing if the future does not include being out among the stars and being a multi-planet species.
  • There’s a tremendous bias against taking risks. Everyone is trying to optimize their ass-covering.
  • We’re going to make it happen. As God is my bloody witness, I’m hell-bent on making it work.
  • What makes innovative thinking happen?… I think it’s really a mindset. You have to decide.
  • When Henry Ford made cheap, reliable cars, people said, ‘Nah, what’s wrong with a horse?’ That was a huge bet he made, and it worked.

Elon Musk Quotes - Persistence is very important. You should not give up unless you are forced to give up.

  • When somebody has a breakthrough innovation, it is rarely one little thing. Very rarely is it one little thing. It’s usually a whole bunch of things that collectively amount to a huge innovation.
  • When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor.
  • 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.
  • You have to say, ‘Well, why did it succeed where others did not?’
  • You shouldn’t do things differently just because they’re different. They need to be… better.

Elon Musk Quotes - When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor.

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