These innovation quotes are part of a specialised collection of workplace and team building quotes.

You can use them to help inspire an atmosphere of creativity in your team, and a willingness to push boundaries.

Perhaps you’re stuck for a way to overcome a problem, and need a fresh perspective.

Or maybe the team’s ideas are opposed by others and you need encouragement to persevere.

(the video to the left is a simple story that may just make you and your team members look at the world differently).

The team quotes below provide some words of wisdom on the importance of innovation. My wish is that they give you some ideas how to nurture it with teams in the workplace … and set your team on the path to long-term success.

Innovation Quotes – the Power of Ideas and Invention

It is difficult to say what is impossible, for the dream of yesterday is the hope of today and the reality of tomorrow. ~Robert Goddard

Ideas control the world.~James A. Garfield

Just as energy is the basis of life itself, and ideas the source of innovation, so is innovation the vital spark of all human change, improvement and progress. ~Ted Levitt

The best way to predict the future is to invent it.~Alan Kay

There is no doubt that creativity is the most important human resource of all. Without creativity, there would be no progress, and we would be forever repeating the same patterns. ~ Edward de Bono

All human development, no matter what form it takes, must be outside the rules; otherwise we would never have anything new. ~ Charles Kettering

You can’t do today’s job with yesterday’s methods and still be in business tomorrow. ~Unknown

Innovation Quotes – Persisting in the Face of Opposition and Failure

Well, when you’re trying to create things that are new, you have to be prepared to be on the edge of risk. ~Michael Eisner

If you’re not failing every now and again, it’s a sign you’re not doing anything very innovative. ~Woody Allen

The essential part of creativity is not being afraid to fail.~ Edwin H. Land

When you innovate, you’ve got to be prepared for everyone telling you you’re nuts. ~Larry Ellison

The most successful people are those who are good at Plan B.

~James York

It’s the same each time with progress. First they ignore you, then they say you’re mad, then dangerous, then there’s a pause and then you can’t find anyone who disagrees with you.

~ Tony Benn, British politician, in the Observer

If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.~ Sir Ken Robinson

Innovation Quotes about the process of innovation

To have a great idea, have a lot of them.~Thomas Edison

Chance favours the prepared mind. ~ Louis Pasteur

Anyone can look for fashion in a boutique or history in a museum. The creative explorer looks for history in a hardware store and fashion in an airport. ~ Robert Wieder

Innovation is not the product of logical thought, although the result is tied to logical structure. ~Albert Einstein

Doing the same thing over and over, yet expecting different results, is the definition of crazy. ~ Unknown

The winner is the chef who takes the same ingredients as everyone else and produces the best result. ~Edward de Bono

Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought. ~Albert von Szent-Gyorgy

Once we rid ourselves of traditional thinking we can get on with creating the future.~ James Bertrand

Replace either/or thinking with plus thinking. ~ Craig Hickman

Genius is one percent inspiration, and ninety-nine percent perspiration. ~Thomas Edison

Some men look at things the way they are and ask why? I dream of things that are not and ask why not? ~ Robert Kennedy

Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties. ~ Erich FrommThe uncreative mind can spot wrong answers, but it takes a very creative mind to spot wrong questions. ~ Anthony Jay

Encouraging Innovation – Quotes for Leaders

Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.~Steve Jobs

The things we fear most in organizations — fluctuations, disturbances, imbalances — are the primary sources of creativity.
~ Margaret J. Wheatley

These next two innovation quotes are quite long, but I really like the messages they contain:

  • When Alexander the Great visited Diogenes and asked whether he could do anything for the famed teacher, Diogenes replied:
    “Only stand out of my light.” Perhaps some day we shall know how to heighten creativity. Until then, one of the best things we can do for creative men and women is to stand out of their light.
    ~ John W. Gardner
  • Innovation is fostered by information gathered from new connections; from insights gained by journeys into other disciplines or places; from active, collegial networks and fluid, open boundaries. Innovation arises from ongoing circles of exchange, where information is not just accumulated or stored, but created. Knowledge is generated anew from connections that weren’t there before. ~ Margaret J. Wheatley, Leadership and the New Science

Innovation Quotes for Leaders (continued)

A person might be able to play without being creative, but he sure can’t be creative without playing. ~ Kurt Hanks and Jay Parry

Innovation— any new idea—by definition will not be accepted at first. It takes repeated attempts, endless demonstrations, monotonous rehearsals before innovation can be accepted and internalized by an organization. This requires courageous patience. ~Warren Bennis

Creative thinking is not a talent, it is a skill that can be learnt. It empowers people by adding strength to their natural abilities which improves teamwork, productivity and where appropriate profits.
~ Edward de Bono

Discoveries are often made by not following instructions, by going off the main road, by trying the untried. ~ Frank Tyger

More Innovation Quotes

All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered. The point is to discover them.~Galileo Galilei

The world really boils down to two kinds of people: those that see shapes in cloud formations, and those that just see clouds. ~Danzai Pace

Don’t confuse the art of the possible with the art of the profitable.
~David Tansley

When all think alike, then no one is thinking.~Walter Lippman

It’s easy to come up with new ideas; the hard part is letting go of what worked for you two years ago, but will soon be out of date.
~ Roger von Oech

We shall not cease from exploration, and at the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.
~ T. S. Eliot

Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things.
~ Theodore Levitt

If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.~Milton Berle

Do or do not. There is no try.~Yoda (Empire Strikes Back)

The most effective way to cope with change is to help create it.
~I W Lynett

Innovation! One cannot be forever innovating. I want to create classics.~Coco Chanel

Don’t worry about people stealing your ideas. If your ideas are any good, you’ll have to ram them down people’s throats. ~ Howard Aiken

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