Henry Ford Quotes
22 Jun 2015
American inventor and industrialist Henry Ford was a true pioneer in many different ways. Not only did he invent one of the earliest internal combustion engines to become commercially viable, he also came up with the 'moving assembly line' concept that paved the way for the mass production that picked up where the Industrial Revolution left off.
Even more importantly, Henry Ford understood how to motivate people to work hard for the benefit of themselves and their employers. His philosophy of how to treat workers was very instrumental in building corporate America.
As such an iconic figure, Ford is often quoted as having said some very profound things. Some of those quotes are accurate while others are not.
At the Benson Ford Research Center in Dearborn, Michigan, researchers have spent decades sorting out fact from fiction. Below is just a selection of some of the more important quotes attributed to Henry Ford and verified through a variety of sources.
Some you may agree with, others you may not.
"That man is best educated who knows the greatest number of things that are so, and who can do the greatest number of things to help and heal the world." (1/1/1924)
"Education is pre-eminently a matter of quality, not amount" (1/1/1924)
"Any man can learn anything he will, but no man can teach except to those who want to learn."(1/1/1924)
On Organised Labour:
"People are never so likely to be wrong as when they are organised. And they never have so little freedom. Perhaps that is why the people at large keep their freedom. People can be manipulated only when they are organised." (9/15/1922)
"The most closely organised groups and movements in the world are those which have been the least friendly to the people's progress and liberty." (9/15/1922)
"The remains of the old must be decently laid away; the path of the new prepared. That is the difference between Revolution and Progress." (5/15/1922)
"Many people are busy trying to find better ways of doing things that should not have to be done at all. There is no progress in merely finding a better way to do a useless thing." (11/15/1922)
"Progress is a new season and the rule of progress is everything in its season." (5/15/1923)
"Politics in the true sense have to do with the prosperity, peace, and security of the people." (12/15/1922)
"If a young man wants to fit himself for the Politics of tomorrow, let him fit himself into essential industry for the purpose of learning how best to conduct it for the whole public good." (12/15/1922)
"If the people really set their minds on anything it is impossible to prevent their getting what they want." (8/15/1923)
On Truth, Integrity, and Character:
"We live in an era of tremendous facts. And the facts are facts. They are also unpleasant facts, which does not decrease their factual percentage one bit. Our job is to understand them, to recognise their presence, to learn if we can what they signify and not to fall into the error of minimising facts because they have a bitter flavour." (6/15/1923)
"The world is held together by the mass of honest folk who do their daily tasks, tend their own spot in the world, and have faith that at last the Right will come fully into its own.” (1/15/1924)
"The only true test of values, either of men or of things, is that of their ability to make the world a better place in which to live." (10/1/1924)
"The satisfaction that arises from honest accomplishment is of far more value in the promotion of human happiness than the thrill that comes with the realisation of materialistic aspirations." (10/1/1924)
It is easy to see that Henry Ford was a bit of a unique thinker, at least in relation to how most of us tend to think today. Understanding how this man thought provides a clearer picture of how he managed to succeed in so many ways.
Henry Ford was one-of-a-kind, that's for sure.
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