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A collection of thoughts and quotes by Sam Walton on business, money, management, belief, customer, leadership, trust, competition, success, vision and wisdom.

43 Motivational Quotes By Sam Walton That Will Guide Your Entrepreneurial Spirit

Quick Facts

Listed In

Famous As
Businessman

Born On

Died On

Born In
Kingfisher, Oklahoma

Founder / Co Founder
Wal-Marts, Sam’s Clubs

Died At Age

Samuel Moore Walton was a renowned American entrepreneur and the founder of iconic retail chains, Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club. Walton is regarded as one of the most iconic business magnates of all time for his contributions towards a range of innovations in the retail industry and the way he made large departmental store chains a common phenomenon. After having opened retail outlets since the time he was in his 20s, Walton opened the first Wal-Mart in 1962 and he never looked back then. His efforts as a capitalist also won him the ‘Presidential Medal of Freedom’ in 1992 and ‘TIME Magazine’ had also named him among the most influential people of the 20th century. Walton grew to be among the richest persons in the United States and was ranked by ‘Forbes Magazine’ as the richest person in the country during the 1980s. Walton was not only a rich and successful entrepreneur but a philanthropist who supported a number of charitable causes. During his high-profile public life and business endeavors, he delivered many lectures, gave interviews where Walton shared his thoughts and insights on a varied range of issues. We bring to you a compilation of quotes and sayings by Sam Walton on leadership, risk, customers, mistakes, fate, hard work, self-belief and more.

Outstanding leaders go out of their way to boost the self esteem of their personnel. If people believe in themselves it s amazing what they can accomplish.

- Sam Walton

There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.

- Sam Walton

Celebrate your successes. Find some humor in your failures.

- Sam Walton

We're all working together; that's the secret.

- Sam Walton

Swim upstream. Go the other way. Ignore the conventional wisdom.

- Sam Walton

The way management treats associates is exactly how the associates will treat the customers.

- Sam Walton

The key to success is to get out into the store and listen to what the associates have to say.

- Sam Walton

If everybody is doing it one way, there's a good chance you can find your niche by going exactly in the opposite direction.

- Sam Walton

I learned this early on in the variety business: You've got to give folks responsibility, you've got to trust them, and then you've got to check on them.

- Sam Walton

Control your expenses better than your competition. This is where you can always find the competitive advantage.

- Sam Walton

I probably have traveled and walked into more variety stores than anybody in America.

- Sam Walton

We let folks know we're interested in them and that they're vital to us. cause they are.

- Sam Walton

Capital isn't scarce; vision is.

- Sam Walton

All of us profit from being corrected - if we're corrected in a positive way.

- Sam Walton

Each Wal-Mart store should reflect the values of its customers and support the vision they hold for their community.

- Sam Walton

All that hullabaloo about somebody's net worth is just stupid, and it's made my life a lot more complex and difficult.

- Sam Walton

What am I supposed to haul my dogs around in, a Rolls-Royce?

- Sam Walton

I don't know what would have happened to Wal-Mart if we had laid low and never stirred up the competition. My guess is that we would have remained a strictly regional operator.

- Sam Walton

You can make a lot of mistakes and still recover if you run an efficient operation. Or you can be brilliant and still go out of business if you're too inefficient.

- Sam Walton

If you love your work, you'll be out there every day trying to do it the best you possibly can, and pretty soon everybody around will catch the passion from you - like a fever.

- Sam Walton

Maybe I was born to be a merchant, maybe it was fate. I don't know about that. But I know this for sure: I loved retail from the very beginning.

- Sam Walton

Appreciate everything your associates do for the business.

- Sam Walton

Exceed your customer's expectations. If you do, they'll come back over and over. Give them what they want - and a little more.

- Sam Walton

I've never been one to dwell on reverses.

- Sam Walton

I have always been driven to buck the system, to innovate, to take things beyond where they've been.

- Sam Walton

In the beginning, I was so chintzy I really didn't pay my employees well.

- Sam Walton

High expectations are the key to everything.

- Sam Walton

Loosen up, and everybody around you will loosen up.

- Sam Walton

Sam Walton: I had to pick myself up and get on with it, do it all over again, only even better this time.

- Sam Walton: Made In America, Sam Walton

Outstanding leaders go out of their way to boost the self-esteem of their personnel. If people believe in themselves, it’s amazing what they can accomplish.

- Sam Walton

Give ordinary folk the chance to buy the same things as rich people.

- Sam Walton

Most of us don't invent ideas. We take the best ideas from someone else.

- Sam Walton

One person seeking glory doesn't accomplish very much.

- Sam Walton

Everything I’ve done I’ve copied from somebody else—and

- Sam Walton: Made In America, Sam Walton

I got into retailing because I wanted a real job.

- Sam Walton

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

Share your profits with all your associates, and treat them as partners. In turn, they will treat you as a partner, and together you will all perform beyond your wildest expectations.

- Sam Walton

I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity an obligation; every possession a duty.” —JOHN D. ROCKEFELLER, JR.

- Sam Walton: Made In America, Sam Walton

Great ideas come from everywhere if you just listen and look for them. You never know who’s going to have a great idea.

- Sam Walton: Made In America, Sam Walton

The small stores were just destined to disappear, at least in the numbers they once existed, because the whole thing is driven by the customers, who are free to choose where to shop.

- Sam Walton: Made In America, Sam Walton

He proved that people can be motivated. The mountain is there, but somebody else has already climbed it.

- Sam Walton: Made In America, Sam Walton

What we guard against around here is people saying, ‘Let’s think about it.’ We make a decision. Then we act on it.

- Sam Walton: Made In America, Sam Walton

I learned early on that one of the secrets of campus leadership was the simplest thing of all: speak to people coming down the sidewalk before they speak to you. I would always look ahead and speak to the person coming toward me. If I knew them I would call them by name, but even if I didn't I would still speak to them.

- Sam Walton