Everything is My Fault

Learn to take personal accountability for everything in your life = you making shit really happen in your life.

You’re in control of 100% of your life.

Yes, there are things that happen to you that you’re not in control of…

But no matter what you always control your reaction to them, and you control your mindset.

You decide if you are going to…

Play defense (complain).


Ply offense (attack)

It’s no surprise that the humans that shape or worlds play offense!


inspirational quotes for employee appreciation

17 Inspirational Quotes for Employee Appreciation

These inspirational quotes are going to be a bit different than what you would think.

It’s not going to be a bunch of RA-RA cheerleader stuff…hell no.

These quotes focus on building relationships that will raise performance and SHOW employees that you appreciate them. Not just some words that say it.

Let’s get right to it…

Top 3 Inspirational Quotes for Employee Appreciation

  1. The key to performance isn’t about trying push new conversations about strategy in, but rather clearing out the clutter.-Steve Zaffron and Dave Logan
  2. If you aren’t in over your head, then how do you know how tall you are? -T. S. Eliot
  3. Notice the difference between asking ‘Can I do this?’ And, ‘How am I going to do this?’Keep reading for the full list of all 17 Inspirational Quotes for Employee Appreciation…

How To Use These Quotes

These quotes are INSPIRATIONAL in that the goal is to inspire the employees to think for themselves, solve problems, and exploit opportunities!

They are not about cheering people on…

I call that kind of feedback MOTIVATIONAL because you’re trying to motivate people to try harder.

To use these inspirational quotes, you need a few things to be set up already:

  • Strong business relationships
  • Team of motivated individuals
  • Respect from the team

Let’s take a quick look at each of these…

Why Do You Care In the First Place?

Why do you want inspired employees and why do you want to show them appreciation?

If the answer is…

  • Morale is low
  • They don’t seem motivated, or
  • There’s a rumor that you don’t appreciate your employees

…then we’ve got bigger issues to tackle my friend!

So, listen closely…

The Toughest Work a Leader Can Do

There is no number of inspirational quotes to fix a dysfunctional relationship with an employee.

And fixing a strained relationship is the toughest work that a leader will ever have to do!

Before venturing any further I suggest you read this post. It’s about how impactful a leader’s words can be, for the better and for the worse!

When your relationships with your employees are all healthy, they begin to resemble more of a partnership.

If that describes your connection with your team, then we’re on the right track!

Before we talk about the inspiration quotes for employee appreciation, some food for thought…

Leaders Don’t Motivate, They Inspire

If your employees aren’t motivated, you’re going to need more than some badass quotes.

Here’s why…

Motivation = The Desire to Try
Inspiration = Feeling or Seeing the Leader’s Vision

Maybe you do the hiring, maybe you don’t…but this BONUS QUOTE cuts to the bone:

“If you want motivated people you have to find them, not motivate them.”

Let’s break that down a tad…

So, Why Can’t I Motivate?

Face it, you just can’t motivate someone.

I know, that’s not a very popular take, but it’s true, and here’s why…

It’s the employee’s responsibility to bring the motivation to you. This would mean they are SELF-MOTIVATED.

From there you can inspire, by helping them pinpoint their dreams and goals, and then pushing them to achieve those goals by teaching, training, holding them accountable, and following up on progress.

I actually have another BONUS QUOTE that I like to use to make this point…

“I’d rather inspire my varsity team to championships than motivate my JV team to try”

If they don’t want to try, you’re going to waste your time!

That’s why I say that leaders don’t motivate, they inspire.

OK one last thing…

Before we get to the list of inspirational quotes for employee appreciation, I’ve got one last thing that I want to touch on, and that is R E S P E C T.
(high five if you spelled that out like the song)…

People Work for People

How Much Do Your Employees Respect You?

People work for people.

That means when someone quits, they didn’t quit the company, THEY QUIT YOU. This is true 80% of the time.

Tough to hear? Find yourself getting defensive?

Sure, there are employees that quit that weren’t a good fit and are better off leaving, but a majority of them quit the leader, not the organization

More food for thought: That’s STILL the leader’s fault for hiring the wrong person!

Check out THIS oldie but goodie (which is actually the 1st thing I ever published to the internet!) about garnering more respect from your team.

OK, OK…And now, without further adieu…

17 Inspirational Quotes for Employee Appreciation

The key to performance isn’t about trying push new conversations about strategy in, but rather clearing out the clutter. -Book: 3 Laws of Performance by Steve Zaffron and Dave Logan
This is one of my favorite quotes because in business, we almost always look to ADD when we want to affect performance, yet most often we need to REMOVE so we can focus on what’s important.


There are no bad teams, only bad leaders. -Jocko Willink
This one is in here because it’s all about ownership. If you have employees that feel under appreciated, or uninspired, you need to own up to your mistakes before you can move on. This is in direct correlation with the 1st quote, as that “clutter” COULD be gossip about you!


Notice the difference between asking ‘Can I do this?’ And, ‘How am I going to do this?’ -Book: Will it Make the Boat Go Faster? By Ben Hunt-Davis and Harriet Beveridge.
In both questions there is an unsure nature of how to start, but one comes with confidence and the other communicates doubt and fear.


Many people are more comfortable with old problems than with new solutions. -Charles H. Brower
This quote is perfect for a time when a teammate is complaining about a process and not adding any value to the situation.


Tough times don’t last forever. Tough people do. – Robert H. Schuller
quote for showing appreciation when an employee as working super hard, or the work gets super hard. (Busy season, corporate visit, high pressure deadline, etc.)


If it’s worth doing, then it’s worth doing wrong. What holds us back is fear of failure. Just try…go…fail, and then adjust!! -Joe Calloway 
Joe wrote the book Be the Best at What Matters Most and it’s a book that I suggest. This quote means that if you’re going to screw up, do it with 100% conviction. I’d rather see an employee comitted to their dream and do it wrong, than do nothing at all.


Most people have a desire to look for the exception instead of a desire to be exceptional. -John Maxwell, 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership
One of the most important leadership books ever written, and a quote that speaks volumes. Most people would rather find the excuse or reason they failed instead of working to be a success.


No matter how bad things are, you can always make them worse.
This is a funny one because it’s a positive statement said in a negative way. It’s a great reminder that things really aren’t that bad, even when they seem desperate. Stop worrying and go fix it!


If you aren’t in over your head, then how do you know how tall you are? –T. S. Eliot
The reason I LOVE this quote so much is because I’m a hustler. I like a lot on my plate and when I’m not working like a maniac, then I ask for more. You can’t grow unless you’re pushed!


Your abilities say win. What does your attitude say? -Nick Glassett (me!)
Smart, driven, and talented means nothing when the person is negative and toxic!


The essence of competitive advantage is doing different things, and doing things differently. -Book: 3 Laws of Performance by Steve Zaffron and Dave Logan
This is a great reminder that when “they” zig, you’ve got to zag! And the second quote from this book (it’s that good of a read, I suggest it to all leaders!)


Short term easy means long term difficult and short term difficult means long term easy. -Book: Take The Stairs by Rory Vaden
This is a discipline quote. Do what’s easy now, and you’re going to have to kill yourself later to catch back up. Do what’s hard now, and you’ll be ahead of schedule.


Successful people do what others don’t want to do and they in turn get extraordinary results. -Book: Take The Stairs by Rory Vaden
Another one from Rory! I call this, The Winning Formula: Do the things that cause winning. Simple, but not easy. It’s the studying, the practice, the rehearsal, and the work that causes great things to happen.


Get good at being a trouble maker and saying sorry when you really screw up. –Book: 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss
This may seem like an odd quote to tell your employees…after all, you don’t want trouble makers do you? I don’t just say yes, I say HELL YES. It’s an empowerment and a trust thing. Nothing communicates “I trust you” like this Tim Ferriss Quote.


Courage is not the absence of fear. Courage is taking action in the presence of fear. – David Cunningham, Landmark Forum Leader
I heard this when I did the incredibly powerful Landmark Forum, and I use it often. Anytime there is a situation that has one of my teammates nervous, this quotes causes action to take place (especially public sharing at a meeting).


Find the sense of who you are, then it will translate into an ease and confidence in how you come off to others. -Unsure of where I got this from
I firmly believe that when you help people be themselves, and not some “improved” or different version is when you truly get inspired action!


Change what you do so you can change how you feel. -Nick Glassett (me)
When people are failing, you would thing they would change what they are doing, but they don’t. Instead they double down and try harder instead of trying something else.

Put in the Time With the People

So there you have it, 17 of my favorite inspirational quotes for employee appreciation.

Many of them are different than your ordinary, optimistic, cheerleader stuff.

I hope you enjoyed it, and would love if you dropped a comment with your opinion and if you used any of these 🙂




Offense or Defense (The 2 Mindsets)

Good Tuesday Morning!

There are 2 mindsets in life. Just 2…


Offense is about “scoring points”.

Think about the person being on attack.
It’s acting on an idea, it’s making a move when you see an opportunity, it’s waking up early to grind, it’s staying late to grind, it’s taking action.

There is an ASSERTIVE nature to being on offense. You execute and you ask for apologies when you’re wrong. It’s positivity and action.

Defense is about “blocking points”.

Think about the person being defensive, or having a defense mechanism.
It’s hesitation on an idea. They talk about a move when they see the opportunity. It’s having a reason to sleep in, it’s finding the excuse to leave early, it’s complaining.

There is a PASSIVE nature to being on defense. They tell you why it won’t work or why they can’t do it. It’s negativity and excuses.

Offense is Positive

The people on offense undoubtedly MAKE things happen, and they have a more uplifting attitude about them, a CAN DO attitude, a WILL DO attitude. It sounds like positivity and the conversations enroll others to join them.

My friends, this epiphany of offense and defense is a powerful one, and when playing offense is a core value to you, opportunities really start to open up…over and over and over and over.

If You’re on Defense…

When you find yourself on defense, there are two things that can help immensely;

1. Give thanks – When you think about it, what do we REALLY have to complain about? We work in a great district, in a great region, for a fantastic company, in the country of opportunity, on a fine of a kind planet.

2. Mind sweep – Stress can bring on defense. Get that stuff OFF your mind and on to paper. Let it live in your planner, or your journal, or a note in your phone, and NOT in your brain. Then, look at the list, and get back on offense…ATTACK IT.

Here’s to LESS comfort zone, and MORE offense 🙂


Crazy Lucky (The Lottery of Life)

It’s mind boggling how lucky we are to be here.
The odds of being born a human are 400,000,000,000 to 1.
That’s so unlikely to happen that it’s practically impossible…yet here we are!
It’s like winning the ultimate lottery!!


So then what do we do with it??
Do you have any idea the amount of time I spent my ONE life complaining???
Do you have any idea how much time I spent working on things that add no value to anyone?
Or how much time I spent sitting on a couch doing something unproductive?


Someone said to me the other day that I never seem to relax. I’m working on SOMETHING at all times.
Most of that time is business related…why?
Because I love business? Yeah that’s a part of it.
Because I want to do a good job. Of course that’s part of it.


The main reason…it’s because being a business man gives me the opportunity to be a positive influence in other peoples lives.
That epiphany that I wrote about yesterday? I want to spread that message.
I am lucky enough to have hit the 400 Billion to one lottery that is LIFE.
And I realized recently how special that is.
And I don’t want to waste a freaking second of it now that I know what I’ve got!


Crazy Lucky… So I work hard doing what I love…building! 🙂


Thank you, and good morning!

Find What You Value (The Epiphany)

My opinion is…

Values vs Tactics, values will always win!

Quick Reminder:
Tactic = A tip. An action. A life hack.
Values = A religion. A ritual. An overall philosophy on everything
Without a doubt the most powerful lesson in this has been that when I follow my Values (my heart), all the things that I used to add tactics to solve have started to take care of themselves…Examples:

Conversion –

I don’t track it, send it out, worry about it, or even talk about it!
     It’s UP 5% over the last 6 weeks w/ a 13% traffic increase.

Inventory  –

I don’t have extra things that I do this year, I don’t talk about it, and inventory audits are getting better and better.

Staffing –

Same as above, and the quality is better, there are less rehires, and we’re building something special!
       *Of course there is always exceptions, and those are the times where we DID have a 1 on 1 about some of these things.
Think hard and identify. That’s important, because you need to have the “goal” to hit.
From there you can get there with Values or Tactics…I suggest using BOTH…but just know the POWER comes from Values, the tweaks come from Tactics.
What do you value? What is so important that you can’t imagine working without it?
Another way that I’ve been saying it lately…What’s the POWER SOURCE that you plug into? What turns things kinda gray when its missing, and when it’s there, things are electric!
Mine was hard to find because I was looking for obvious things like; winning, or teaching. It wasn’t until this year, through a series of small epiphanies that I finally had MY REAL LEADERSHIP EPIPHANY, and I realized that…
-To focus on “winning” is to win small. To focus on people builds a legacy.
-Positivity has a halo effect. People can FEEL that halo and they want in on it.
-I talk less, and listen more.
-I’m more patient as I listen
-I’m more deliberate with my feedback
-I’m going to stay on the damn phone with you until you get it.
-I don’t say “my phone is always on” b/c you don’t care about phones…I tell you I am always on…and I am!
-Everything I try to do now is for others.
-Ego has evaporated.
-Anxiety for what others think has gone and we can just work on building something amazing 🙂
     I’m still adjusting to this btw!
SO I ask you again….What do you value? What is so important that you can’t imagine living without it? Start there, and GO HARD because no matter how many hours you spend on that thing, the work is never done, and it’s ALWAYS enjoyable!
Thank you!
Employee Motivation Quotes

31 Killer Employee Motivation Quotes (That are Actually Impactful)

Before you get going on these quotes, read this: Leaders Don’t Motivate. They Inspire.

I’ve got 31 Employee Motivation Quotes for you, but First…

I want to be sure to state my belief that I strongly feel employees need to be SELF motivated. It would be a bit hypocritical for me to post this and not state that.

Now Inspiration, that’s a different story!

The two words, motivation and inspiration, they get swapped in and out a lot, and they are NOT the same thing.

  • Motivation is an internal trait
  • Inspiration is an outward force that can be applied

That said, there is times that you do need to add some employee motivation with some quotes and speeches.

  • Maybe you just took over some new employees that were de-motivated by a prior manager.
  • Or you realized that you have de-motivated your employees and need to change the momentum.
  • What if you have lost YOUR motivation and need a spark?

Show the team that you care! Your words are powerful when delivered with passion and from the heart. Use these quotes to inspire and, of course, HAVE FUN!

Ok, so here we go…

31 Killer Employee Motivation Quotes (that are actually impactful!)

Change what you do so you can change how you feel.


If it feels like it’s you vs the world, chances are it’s really you vs yourself.


Gimme a reason to fight for you and I’ll fight to the death for free.


The people who are going to be successful are going to find advantages in any situation.


Thinking is NOT doing I post this because I struggle with it, not because I’ve mastered it and not because I’m immune to it. . . . Thinkers are brilliant people but we can sometimes get bogged down by over analyzing. Or like in my case, I think that because I asked a great question that it will do something. It won’t. That’s because THINKING IS NOT DOING. . . . The secret to success lies in ACTION. And that sounds obvious, but ponder the amount of great ideas that you’ve had that you didn’t do anything with…Invention, app, website, business, GOING TO THE GYM… . . . Every second matters. So waste none, take action, get started!! Employee Motivation Quotes
Thinking is NOT doing.


I don’t need more time. What I need is a deadline.


It isn’t enough to think outside the box. Thinking is passive. Get used to acting outside the box.


If knowledge is power, then learning is your superpower.


If you argue for your limits, you get to keep them.


Find the sense of who you are, then it will translate into an ease and confidence in how you come off to others.


Courage is not the absence of fear.
Courage is taking action in the presence of fear.


Jocko Willink is a former United States Navy SEAL and author of Extreme Ownership - How US Navy SEALS Lead and Win. He teaches leadership techniques that he used in battle to apply to business teams. Jocko is INTENSE and inspirational. Here are his most memorable quotes...


Bold words don’t cover lazy actions, just like good frames won’t save bad paintings.


Fear is a fictional story written in our mind. False Evidence Appearing Real.


Today’s work turns into tomorrow’s success.


Successful people do what others don’t want to do and they in turn get extraordinary results.


The essence of competitive advantage is doing different things, and doing things differently. 


Employee Motivation Quotes
Losers focus on winners.
Winners focus on winning.


You’re not missing your target because it’s harder. You’re missing it because your softer.


People tend to become what you encourage them to be not what you nag them to be.


Your abilities say WIN. What does your attitude say?


Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.


Don’t count hours worked, track impact made.


Leaders think and talk solutions.
Followers think and talk problems.


If you aren’t in over your head, then how do you know how tall you are?


Motivation Quotes for
Don’t water the root, water the apple.


If you want to do something you’ll find a way. If you don’t you’ll find and excuse.


If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing wrong.


Tough times don’t last forever. Tough people do.


You deserve the life you tolerate.


How to never lose…never quit.


Notice the difference between asking “can I do this, and how am I going to do this?


Use these great employee motivation quotes to rally our team, and be sure that you speak it from the heart and be refreshing honest!



Leaders Change Lives

I’ve worked at Journeys a long time. I’ve got asked why 1000 times. I’ve had a few different answers over the years, but now when someone asks me why I love it at Journeys, the true reason comes out of my mouth naturally, effortlessly, and POWERFULLY.

My answer…

“The leadership. Yeah, I love shoes. Yeah, Journeys is pretty cool store and we play loud music, and I’m embraced for having tattoos and stuff…but it’s because of how much the people above me care about me. I’ve been through two rough patches in my career, and both times it was because I had friction with my leader. The rest of the time, I’m not just expected to do great, I’m TRUSTED to do great.”

You’re quote of the day…STAND AND FEEL YOUR WORTH

As leaders, we change lives. 

Worth saying again because it’s so powerful. WE CHANGE LIVES. 

Now, is the change you create POSITIVE? That’s a question you have to answer 😉 

Thank you!


Lao Tzu Quotes

27 Mind Expanding Quotes by Lao Tzu

Who was Lao Tzu?
You could also ask “Who was Laozi?”

Lao Tzu was an ancient Chinese philosopher and writer, and has also has been referred to as Lao-Tze, and Laozi.

His given name was actually named Li Er. Laozi is a honorary title, which was romanized in many different ways leading to our name-confusion.

Either way, it’s all the same guy!

He is the author of the Tao Te Ching, the founder of philosophical Taoism….However, in the mid-twentieth century, an argument was made by scholars that the person known as Laozi is doubtful to have actually existed and that that the Tao Te Ching was “a compilation of Taoist sayings by many hands”. 

Of course, many others argue the opposite, and there is actually no way to know for sure!

What we do know is, no matter what name he goes by, and whether or not he actually existed, there are some INCREDIBLE quotes that he’s credited for.

These quotes are all simple and elegant, but at the same time make you think about yourself and your own views in a very deep way.

Expand Your Mind with this Essential Collection of Lao Tzu Quotes 

When the best leader’s work is done the people say, ‘We did it ourselves.’ -Lao Tzu


If you do not change direction, you may end up where your are heading. -Lao Tzu


Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. -Lao Tzu


A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step. -Lao Tzu


He who knows that enough is enough will always have enough. -Lao Tzu


The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. -Lao Tzu


Great acts are made up of small deeds. -Lao Tzu



He who conquers others is strong; He who conquers himself is mighty. -Lao Tzu


The snow goose need not bathe to make itself white. Neither need you do anything but be yourself. -Lao Tzu


He who talks more is sooner exhausted. -Lao Tzu


Act without expectation. -Lao Tzu


Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished. -Lao Tzu


Sincere words are not fine; fine words are not sincere. -Lao Tzu


More quotes from Jocko Willink, Navy SEAL and all around badass


If you would take, you must first give, this is the beginning of intelligence. -Lao Tzu


Happiness is the absence of striving for happiness. -Lao Tzu


I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures. -Lao Tzu


A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving. -Lao Tzu


Fill your bowl to the brim and it will spill. Keep sharpening your knife and it will blunt. -Lao Tzu


To lead people, walk behind them. -Lao Tzu


Lao Tzu Quotes | New Beginnings are often disguised as painful endings


The further one goes, the less one knows. -Lao Tzu


He who knows, does not speak. He who speaks, does not know. -Lao Tzu


When you accept yourself, the whole world accepts you. -Lao Tzu


Remind yourself daily, there is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way. -Lao Tzu


He, who tries to shine, dims his own light. -Lao Tzu


Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny. -Lao Tzu


13 Bad Ass Connor McGregor Quotes



Leaders Don’t Motivate, They Inspire (and the difference between the 2)

A long time ago I had a conversation with a District Manager about motivating people. They had this big explanation as to why it was SO important.
At the end of the explanation, I aggressively disagreed…
I don’t motivate. I don’t teach others how to motivate. It’s not our job, and it’s not an effective form of leadership.
Let me explain…
I believe it is our job to FIND motivated people. Self-motivated. Driven. Ambitious.
See, motivation, to me, is an internal trait. You gotta bring it to me so I can help you do something with it.
When it’s missing, then we have to motivate people to do their job…in short, we have the wrong people.
I came up with an analogy to explain my argument:
I’d rather inspire my Varsity Team to win championships than motivate my JV Team to try harder.
Ahhhhhh, now inspiration…THAT’S the business we’re in!
We inspire Action. Change. Growth.
Our conversations should make people want to go do the things they struggle with.
      Maybe we add clarity…and then they see it.
      Maybe we add urgency…and they go do it.
      Maybe we show them we care, so they know we’re her to catch them if they fall.
      Maybe we teach them an easier way, so they can overcome it.
Let me explain the difference in these 2 real quick:
Motivating = Talking people into trying harder. They don’t WANT IT, and you try convince them they do. You want it for them more than they want it for themselves.
Inspiring = Challenging people to see more. They WANT IT, (bad!) and are on the right track, but on the wrong train. You help them find the right train.
If you want motivated people, you have to find them, not motivate them.
And you should check out my 7 Employee Motivation Quotes to Shake Things Up…they are NOT what you think!
Thanks 🙂

5 Memorable Jocko Willink Quotes from Discipline Equals Freedom

31 Phenomenal Jocko Willink Quotes from Discipline Equals Freedom. Get [Infographic] #infographic

Here is an infographic featuring 5 Memorable Jocko Willink Quotes from Discipline Equals Freedom.


Jocko Willink is a former United States Navy SEAL commander, and author of six books:

  1. Discipline Equals Freedom – Field Manual
  2. Extreme Ownership – How Navy SEALS Lead and Win
  3. Way of the Warrior Kid
  4. Way of the Warrior Kid – Marc’s Mission
  5. The Dichotomy of Leadership
  6. Mikey and the Dragons

He focuses on teaching the leadership principles that he learned as the Commander of the SEAL Task Unit Bruiser, where he was stationed in Iraq fighting in the Battle of Ramadi. He is the co-owner of the leadership consulting company, Echelon Front where he, along with Extreme Ownership and The Dichotomy of Leadership Co-Author Leif Babin, provide practical solutions to create high performance success in professional teams.

Jocko’s Incredible book, Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual

In Discipline Equals Freedom, Jocko hones in more on his personal methods for life, and leadership.

The book is separated into 4 parts:

  • Thoughts – This is where Jocko covers his personal views on many things
  • Actions – This is where Jocko goes more pragmatic in how he attacks life
  • Fuel – Feeding the Machine – Jocko’s take on food
  • The Workouts – Here Jocko outlines his personal workouts, and breaks them into Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced with 4 tiers of difficulty in each

Discipline Equals Freedom is a phenomenal read, and it’s also a bad ass design.

The book is all black, with no dust cover. The pages are all black with white type, and each page has a black and white backdrop behind it.

The writing style of Discipline Equals Freedom is like no book I’ve ever read…It’s almost written in poems.

The writing style is incredible, and as you read each passage, the whole book is practically narrated in Jocko’s distinct surly voice.

While Jocko is very well known for his aggressive style, rough exterior, and assertive attitude, he actually has a bachelors degree in English. This, combined with his extensive leadership experience, and take-action attitude, make him a phenomenal motivator and a role model for many.

Enjoy the Quotes. Enjoy the Book!