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Getting Started

  1. One sees great things from the valley; only small things from the peak.K. Chesterton (1874-1936) British novelist, poet and critic. The Innocence of Father Brown (1911)


  1. Launching a start-up is tough in any country. In Mexico, it’s something else.

Miguel Angel Davila (b.1966) Mexican entrepreneur. Forbes (May 1998)


  1. The challenge in a start-up is that you always have to spread your wings pretty far to see what will work.

Michael Dell (b.1965) U.S. chairman and C.E.O. of Dell Computer Corporation. Quoted in In the Company of Giants (Rama Dev Jager; 1997)


  1. We were all 25 years old, none of us had run a business and none of us had worked in retail. You can’t get a much harder start.

Charles Dunstone (b.1964) British business executive and founder of Carphone Warehouse. Sunday Times (London) (June 2000)


  1. I do know people who have got these life plans and if they haven’t got there by 12 o’clock on Friday then they’re going to resign.

Belinda Earl (b.1961) British retail executive. Sunday Times (London) (September 2000)


  1. Each venture is a new beginning, a raid on the inarticulate.
  2. S. Eliot (1888-1965) British poet, dramatist, and critic. “East Coker,” Four Quartets (1943)


  1. It is kind of difficult to mess things up if you have the right people in the right place.

Tony Elliott (b.1947) British publisher. Sunday Times (London) (May 2000)


  1. When I got my hands on Unit, I took the decision that I would be going nowhere fast if I just printed 500 copies to circulate around the university, so I printed 4000 copies.

Tony Elliott (b.1947) British publisher. Referring to his transformation of a university magazine to a national publication. Sunday Times (London) (May 2000)


  1. I had this great urge…I had it the day I was born. Some may call it destiny. My parents and friends called it dismaying.

Dian Fossey (1932-85) U.S. conservationist. Gorillas in the Mist (1983)


  1. In a campaign, first you put up the façade, then you go around and build the building.

Newt Gingrich (b.1943) U.S. politician. New Yorker (October 1995)


  1. To start a business and to run it successfully, you have to like people. You have to care about them.

Bud Hadfield (b.1923) U.S. entrepreneur and founder of Kwik Kopy. Wealth Within Reach: Winning Strategies for Success from the Unconventional Wisdom of Bud Hadfield (1995)


  1. Give me six months to prove myself, then if you don’t like what I’m doing, you can give me the shittiest job you’ve got.

Rob Herson (b.1952) South African business executive. Marketing (July 2000)


  1. He who has begun, has half done. Dare to be wise; begin!

Horace (65-8 B.C.) Roman poet and satirist. Epistles (20? B.C.), bk. 1,no. 2


  1. An accidental business person.

Heather Killen (b.1959) Australian Internet executive. Fortune (October 2000)


  1. In business for yourself, not by yourself.

Ray Kroc (1902-84) U.S. founder of McDonald’s. Referring to franchising opportunities with McDonald’s. Quoted in McDonald’s-Behind the Arches (John F. Love; 1986)


  1. Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.

Ray Kroc (1902-84) U.S. founder of McDonald’s. Quoted in The Fifties (David Halberstan; 1993)


  1. Rally, I wanted to work in the movie business. But that was like saying I wanted to go to the moon.

Sherry Lansing (b.1944) U.S. chairman of Paramount Motion Picture Group. “The 50 Most powerful Women in American Business,” Fortune (Patricia Sellers and Cora Daniels; October 1999)


  1. If you are going to start a company, it takes so much energy that you’d better overcome your feeling of risk.

Michael C. Lynch (b.1946) Scottish historian. Interview, Fortune (July 1998)


  1. I can have a big say because I am the owner, the sole shareholder. I don’t get involved in half measures.

Peter Mandelson (b.1953) British politician. Referring to the Millennium Dome project. Observer (London) (July 1997)


  1. I have never avoided the influence of others. I would have considered this a cowardice and lack of sincerity toward myself.

Henri Matisse (1869-1954) French painter and sculptor. Interview (1907)


  1. I always had to battle with that confidence thing…I was postponing or delaying the moment of truth.

Paul Merton (b.1957) British comedian. Observer (London) (October 2000)


  1. We want to manage and grow our companies ourselves. If we give up 51 percent, we might as well get out of the business.

Sunil Mittal (b.1948) Indian software entrepreneur. Sunday Times (London) (May 2000)


  1. The whole thing is fire, ready, aim and I love it.

Chris Moore (b.1960) British marketing director of Domino’s Pizza. Referring to businesses. Marketing (June 2000)


  1. I think what we have in Portugal is perhaps what the Mexicans and the Africans have. We don’t have a lot of facilities. We need to work very hard to get things done.

Rosa Mota (b.1958) Portuguese athlete. Quoted in Running with the Legends (Michael Sandrock; 1996)


  1. You do not have to be the son of a rich man to be an entrepreneur. Today kids are far more willing to take risks because they’ve seen high rewards.

Narayana Murthy (b.1946) Indian founder and C.E.O. of Infosys. Forbes (June 2000)



  1. Launching your own business is like writing our own personal declaration of independence from the corporate beehive.

Paula Nelson (b.1944) U.S. educator. The Joy of Money (1975)


  1. All we need is an old cigar box and someone to talk notice.

Laurence Olivier (1907-89) British actor and director. Referring to acting. Interview (1986)


  1. Poverty provided the hunger and I’m still hungry today. My glass is always half empty.

Vijay Patel (b.1950) Kenyan entrepreneur. Sunday Times (London) (September 2000)


  1. I was scared of failing.

Pele (b.1940) Brazilian soccer player. Referring to his first professional soccer game. Press conference (1956)

  1. Perhaps one of the greatest advantages I have is that I am not educated in the academic sense.

Jack Petchey (b.1925) British investor. Sunday Times (London) (September 2000)


  1. Start small. If you succeed with a few thousand pounds, then you can do much better with bigger sums.

Reuben Singh (b.1977) British entrepreneur and author. Management Today (September 1999)


  1. Remember that on day one, when you go in as the boss, you’ll feel a mixture of exhilaration that you’ve made it and fatigue with all the effort.

Barbara Thomas (b.1947) U.S. banker. Management Today (October 1999)


  1. I only started acting out of fearless ignorance and a side order of stupidity.

Uma Thurman (b.1970) U.S. actor. Sunday Times (London) (October 2000)


  1. The best thing I had going for me was my knowledge of women. I certainly didn’t have much money…But I had respect in the market place I was entering-and that was better than a business degree.

Lise Watier (b.1942) Canadian proprietor of a cosmetics chain. Quoted in Looking Good (Rosa Harris-Adler; 1997)