60 short motivational quotes for employees to engage and inspire

Written by: the Officevibe Content Team
Updated on: Published on: June 26, 2018 |  Reading time: 7m

Inspiration doesn’t always come naturally, and even the most motivated employees occasionally need a boost.

Employee motivation is a complex process and, as a manager, you are sometimes too busy to take the time to implement exhaustive motivation techniques. In this case, these quotes might give your employees a well-needed boost.

Sometimes all we need is to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. A little bit of perspective can go a long way, and quotes from inspirational figures can be just the thing to bring it.

Whether you want to enhance an email, make your next presentation more impactful, or give your employees a morale boost before a big week, we’ve got a quote for you. Set the tone and get your employees motivated with this diverse selection of inspirational quotes for any occasion.

Why you should motivate your employees

Employee motivation is a critical aspect of employee engagement. Because each employee is different, it’s part of your responsibility as a manager to find out what motivates each team member. A motivated employee will be willing to go the extra mile to ensure the success of your team. Also, motivation inspires. If an employee is motivated, the behavior might spread to other members of your team.

On the other hand, a demotivated employee can also spread negativity to others. Be wary of the signs of disengagement before it’s too late.

According to Officevibe data, 22% of employees feel that their work is not fulfilling.

Motivating your team members will create a sense of belonging in your team. Since employee motivation is so important, you should work towards implementing long-lasting engagement initiatives. These will make you stand out as a great leader and help to improve relationships with your employees.

60 short and inspiring employee motivation quotes to share with your team

Here is a list of our favorite office motivational quotes. You can use these as motivational messages for employees or simply encouraging words for employees in your team.

  1. If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat! Just get on. – Sheryl Sandberg
  2. To win in the marketplace you must first win in the workplace. – Doug Conant
  3. When people are financially invested, they want a return. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute. – Simon Sinek
  4. Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn. – Benjamin Franklin
  5. I always did something I was a little not ready to do. I think that’s how you grow. When there’s that moment of ‘Wow, I’m not really sure I can do this,’ and you push through those moments, that’s when you have a breakthrough. – Marissa Mayer
  6. Every strike brings me closer to the next home run. – Babe Ruth
  7. Focus on the journey, not on arriving at a certain destination.” – Chris Hadfield
  8. We must all learn not only to not fear change, but to embrace it enthusiastically and, perhaps even more important, encourage and drive it. – Tony Hsieh
  9. Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible! – Audrey Hepburn
  10. Always treat your employees exactly as you want them to treat your best customers. – Stephen R Covey
  11. Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment – Oprah Winfrey
  12. Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try. – John F. Kennedy
  13. Research indicates that workers have three prime needs: Interesting work, recognition for doing a good job, and being let in on things that are going on in the company. – Zig Ziglar
  14. If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything. – Malcolm X
  15. If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced. – Vincent Van Gogh
  16. When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be. – Lao Tzu
  17. When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it. – Henry Ford
  18. You can have all the potential in the world, but unless you have confidence, you have nothing. – Tyra Banks
  19. It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years. – Abraham Lincoln
  20. Appreciate everything your associates do for the business. Nothing else can quite substitute for a few well-chosen, well-timed, sincere words of praise. They’re absolutely free and worth a fortune. – Sam Walton
  21. Don’t limit yourself. Many people limit themselves to what they think they can do. You can go as far as your mind lets you. What you believe, remember, you can achieve. – Mary Kay Ash
  22. The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team. – Phil Jackson
  23. There are only three measurements that tell you nearly everything you need to know about your organization’s overall performance: employee engagement, customer satisfaction, and cash flow. – Jack Welch
  24. You can’t let your failures define you. You have to let your failures teach you. – Barack Obama
  25. Some companies don’t have an engagement problem, they have a hiring problem. – Bob Kelleher
  26. Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work. – Thomas Edison
  27. If you don’t understand, ask questions. If you’re uncomfortable about asking questions, say you are uncomfortable about asking questions and then ask anyway. It’s easy to tell when a question is coming from a good place. Then listen some more. – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  28. The first thing that has to be recognized is that one cannot train someone to be passionate–it’s either in their DNA or it’s not. – Richard Branson
  29. If it scares you, it might be a good thing to try. – Seth Godin
  30. In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different. – Coco Chanel
  31. When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor. – Elon Musk
  32. If you don’t give people a chance to fail, you won’t innovate. If you want to be an innovative company, allow people to make mistakes.– Indra Nooyi
  33. The only way to do great work is to love what you do. – Steve Jobs
  34. Failure is not the opposite of success; it’s part of success. – Arianna Huffington
  35. Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection. – Mark Twain
  36. Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships. – Michael Jordan
  37. In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not. – Albert Einstein
  38. Success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose. – Bill Gates
  39. If people are doubting how far you can go, go so far that you can’t hear them anymore. – Michele Ruiz 
  40. A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty. – Winston Churchill
  41. People do not decide to become extraordinary. They decide to accomplish extraordinary things. – Edmund Hillary
  42. The one thing I learned is to just give everything a shot. You don’t want to live in regret. – Chloe Kim
  43. The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing. – Walt Disney
  44. Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them. – Madam C. J. Walker
  45. Often any decision, even the wrong decision, is better than no decision.– Ben Horowitz
  46. Remember that just because you hit bottom doesn’t mean you have to stay there – Robert Downey Jr.
  47. Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration. – Thomas Edison
  48. The three things that motivate creative people – autonomy, mastery, purpose!
  49. You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have. – Maya Angelou
  50. Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.– Jim Rohn
  51. Your story is what you have, what you will always have. It is something to own. – Michelle Obama
  52. Getting the right people and the right chemistry is more important than the right idea. – Ed Catmull
  53. It’s the job that’s never started as takes longest to finish. – J.R.R. Tolkien
  54. The best way to predict the future is to invent it. – Mark Cuban
  55. The true competitors, though, are the ones who always play to win. – Tom Brady
  56. You can’t be afraid to fail. It’s the only way you succeed. You’re not gonna succeed all the time and I know that. – LeBron James
  57. Always work hard on something uncomfortably exciting. – Larry Page
  58. The most important investment you can make is in yourself. – Warren Buffett
  59. If you think you’re too small to have an impact, try going to bed with a mosquito. – Anita Roddick
  60. You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take. – Wayne Gretzky

The employee motivation quotes shown above can be used as a quick pick-me-up or a simple motivation boost. Encouraging and inspirational quotes for coworkers are not a long-term solution to employee engagement issues in your team.

Sending weekly quotes for employees is a simple way to help keep your team motivated.

These inspirational quotes for employees can be used for a short motivational speech or a “Monday motivational quote” tradition you can start with your team. Using one per week will give you more than a year’s worth of quotes to share.

Check out Officevibe to find out how your team really feels. Officevibe provides an easy solution to measuring and improving employee engagement. Our Pulse Survey tool helps managers see the whole picture and take action.