Quotes to Inspire Teamwork and Collaboration
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46 Better Quotes to Celebrate Teamwork and Collaboration

Inspo is so hot right now. Instagram coaches and social media groups are out there killing it with positivity, but the words that guide us at ClearVoice are more practical and targeted: They provide guidelines and mini-manifestos for improved collaboration and teamsmanship. And ClearVoice is all about putting together great teams to collaborate and build brands through building content. 

Do we want to out-rank our competition? Yes. But do we also want to support our peers and help our industry rise? Yes. For the selection of quotes, we borrow from generals and legislators, industry tycoons and spiritual leaders, podcasters and folk musicians. Take their guidance, find your tribe… and thrive.

Teamwork quotes to inspire trust, humility and growth:

'Sticks in a bundle are unbreakable.' - African proverb

1. “Sticks in a bundle are unbreakable.”

  • The source: African proverb often cited as Kenyan or from the Bondei people in neighboring Tanzania.
'Sticks in a bundle are unbreakable.' - African proverb | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

2. “None of us is as smart as all of us.”

  • The source: Ken Blanchard.
  • How did he lead: This unconventional management consultant authored international bestsellers including ‘The One Minute Manager’and ‘High Five’ — wherein this quote was the subtitle.
'None of us is as smart as all of us.' - Ken Blanchard | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

3. “Trust is knowing that when a team member does push you, they’re doing it because they care about the team.”

  • The source: Patrick Lencioni, in ‘The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable’
  • How did he lead: CEO consultant and founder of the Table Group, this prolific author has written 11 books that have sold over 5 million copies.
'Trust is knowing that when a team member does push you, they're doing it because they care about the team.' - Patrick Lencioni | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

4. “The leader can’t be the star player, scoring all the points.”

  • The source: Gary Burnison, in ‘The Leadership Journey: How to Master the Four Critical Areas of Being a Great Leader’
  • How did he lead: Business book author and CEO of organizational consulting firm Korn Ferry
'The leader can't be the star player, scoring all the points.' - Gary Burnison | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

 

'In teamwork, silence isn’t golden. It’s deadly.' - Mark Sanborn

5. “In teamwork, silence isn’t golden. It’s deadly.”

  • The source: Mark Sanborn in a 2014 Tweet
  • How did he lead: Bestselling author, in-demand keynote speaker, President of Sanborn & Associates, Inc.
'In teamwork, silence isn’t golden. It’s deadly.' - Mark Sanborn | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

6. “The greater the loyalty of a group toward the group, the greater is the motivation among the members to achieve the goals of the group, and the greater the probability that the group will achieve its goals.”

  • The source: Rensis Likert, in ‘The Human Organization’
  • How did he lead: Social scientist who was instrumental in allowing employees to be seen as stakeholders: He pioneered the concept of participative management.
'The greater the loyalty of a group toward the group, the greater is the motivation among the members to achieve the goals of the group, and the greater the probability that the group will achieve its goals.' - Rensis Likert | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

7. “One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man cannot make a team.”

  • The source: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  • How did he lead: The NBA’s all-time leading scorer and a 6-time NBA champion, over a 20-year NBA career
'One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man cannot make a team.' - Kareem Abdul Jabbar | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

8. “Your corn is ripe today; mine will be so tomorrow. ‘Tis profitable for us both, that I should labour with you today, and that you should aid me tomorrow.'”

  • The source: David Hume, in ‘A Treatise of Human Nature’
  • How did he lead: Historian, philosopher and essayist of the 18th century, Mr. Hume inspired more popularity posthumously for his empirical study of human nature — and conclusion that humans are driven by emotion, not so much reason.
'Your corn is ripe today; mine will be so tomorrow. ‘Tis profitable for us both, that I should labour with you today, and that you should aid me tomorrow.' - David Hume | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

 

Teamwork quotes to inspire trust, humility and growth:

9. “Why do you form a team? Because teamwork builds trust, and trust builds speed.”

'Why do you form a team? Because teamwork builds trust, and trust builds speed.' - Russel Honoré | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

10. “If you can laugh together, you can work together.”

  • The source: Robert Orben, to the Houston Chronicle
  • How did he lead: This multi-talent’s long and illustrious career began as a magician and included a stint as speechwriter to Gerald R. Ford when the politician was veep. In latter decades he focused more on comedy.
'If you can laugh together, you can work together.' - Robert Orben | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

11. “Cursed is the man who has found some other man’s work and cannot lose it.”

  • The source: Mark Twain, The New York Times, November 26, 1905
  • How did he lead: The quintessential writer, novelist and humorist of the Gold Rush days… still as celebrated and studied 150 years after his passing.
'Cursed is the man who has found some other man's work and cannot lose it.' - Mark Twain | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

12. “People who work together will win, whether it be against complex football defenses, or the problems of modern society.”

  • The source: Vince Lombardi
  • How did he lead: Pro ice hockey player with 2018 Stanley Cup-winning team the Washington Capitals.
'People who work together will win, whether it be against complex football defenses, or the problems of modern society.' - Vince Lombardi | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

 

'Until all of us have made it, none of us have made it.' - Rosemary Brown

13. “Until all of us have made it, none of us have made it.”

  • The source: Rosemary Brown
  • How did she lead: Feminist and voice for equal rights, elected official in Canada and the first black woman in the country to attain provincial legislative seat.
'Until all of us have made it, none of us have made it.' - Rosemary Brown | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

14. “The biggest thing I have realized was that you have to choose your collaborators very carefully, and that not everybody can like you.”

  • The source: Peter Capaldi, to Variety
  • How did he lead: Director and actor who has played, among other things, Dr. Who.
'The biggest thing I have realized was that you have to choose your collaborators very carefully, and that not everybody can like you.' - Peter Capaldi | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

15. “Unless our standards are high in everything, the entire group will retrogress to the lowest level. We’ll try to look the neatest and be the cleanest and the smartest. In every possible ramification, we’re going to try to shoot for the moon.”

  • The source: Bud Wilkinson, to Sports Illustrated
  • How did he lead: College Football Hall of Fame coach and commentator.
'Unless our standards are high in everything, the entire group will retrogress to the lowest level. We'll try to look the neatest and be the cleanest and the smartest. In every possible ramification, we're going to try to shoot for the moon.' - Budd… Click To Tweet

16. “There is not a single leaf which is a mere ornament; all contribute to the fruitfulness of the earth, and the support of its inhabitants.”

  • The source: Christoph Christian Sturm, from ‘Beauties of Nature Delineated’
  • How did he lead: Author and preacher late 18th century Germany.
'There is not a single leaf which is a mere ornament; all contribute to the fruitfulness of the earth, and the support of its inhabitants.' - Christoph Christian Sturm | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

 

'When you sing with a group of people, you learn how to subsume yourself into a group consciousness' - Brian Eno

17. “When you sing with a group of people, you learn how to subsume yourself into a group consciousness… That’s one of the great feelings — to stop being me for a little while and to become us. That way lays empathy, the great social virtue.”

  • The source: Brian Eno, to NPR
  • How did he lead: English record producer, humanitarian and artist.
'When you sing with a group of people, you learn how to subsume yourself into a group consciousness... That's one of the great feelings — to stop being me for a little while and to become us. That way lays empathy, the great social virtue.' - Brian eno… Click To Tweet

18. “The fundamental law of human beings is interdependence. A person is a person through other persons.”

  • The source: Archbishop Desmond Tutu (attributed)
  • How did he lead: Religious and societal leader who won the Nobel Peace Prize for his anti-apartheid work.
'The fundamental law of human beings is interdependence. A person is a person through other persons.' - Archbishop Desmond Tutu | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

19. “It is only as we develop others that we permanently succeed.”

  • The source: Harvey S. Firestone (attributed)
  • How did he lead: The American businessman and industrialist who founded Firestone Tire.
'It is only as we develop others that we permanently succeed.' - Harvey S. Firestone | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

20. “The way a team plays as a whole determines its success.”

  • The source: Babe Ruth
  • How did he lead: Legendary American baseball player.
'The way a team plays as a whole determines its success.' - Babe Ruth | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

21. “Things work well when a group of people know each other, and things break down when it’s a bunch of random people interacting.”

  • The source: Jimmy Wales to the New Yorker
  • How did he lead: Cofounder of Wikipedia.
'Things work well when a group of people know each other, and things break down when it's a bunch of random people interacting.' - Jimmy Wales | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

22. “People have been known to achieve more as a result of working with others than against them.”

  • The source: Dr. Allan Fromme, to The New York Times
  • How did he lead: American psychologist, writer and media personality known for his “warmhearted” approach to tough topics like marriage, sex and family.
'People have been known to achieve more as a result of working with others than against them.' - Dr. Allan Fromme | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

23. “Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.”

  • The source: Oprah Winfrey (attributed)
  • How did she lead: An American talk show host, actress, author, billionaire, and global icon who built a media empire.
'Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.' - Oprah Winfrey | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

24. “We can see that all the desirable experiences that we cherish or aspire to attain are dependent upon cooperation and interaction with other sentient beings.”

  • The source: The Dalai Lama
  • How did he lead: Spiritual leader of the Tibetan Buddhists.
'We can see that all the desirable experiences that we cherish or aspire to attain are dependent upon cooperation and interaction with other sentient beings.' - The Dalai Lama | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

 

'One way to remember who you are is to remember who your heroes are.' - Walter Isaacson

25. “One way to remember who you are is to remember who your heroes are.”

  • The source: Walter Isaacson, interviewing Steve Jobs for ‘Steve Jobs’
  • How did he lead: Steve Jobs’ biography author held many other positions including the Managing Editor of Time magazine at the dawn of the digital news age, which was where he first met and interviewed Steve Jobs. He is former CEO and current Distinguished Fellow of think tank The Aspen Institute.
'One way to remember who you are is to remember who your heroes are.' - Walter Isaacson | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

26. “He had orange hair and he was white; I had an Afro and I was black. The first thing I did was say, ‘Come over to my house, have some food and let’s just talk,’ because he was a curious guy, he was interesting, and he wasn’t the usual type of guy that I was used to working with. Next thing I knew he took me up on the invitation.”

  • The source: Carlos Alomar, in ‘A Portrait of Bowie: A Tribute to Bowie by his Artistic Collaborators & Contemporaries’
  • How did he lead: David Bowie was a musical icon; after meeting him this way, Puerto Rican composer and guitarist Alomar collaborated with him on and off for approximately 30 years — from the mid-1970s to the Aughts.
'He had orange hair and he was white; I had an Afro and I was black. The first thing I did was say, ‘Come over to my house, have some food and let’s just talk,’ because he was a curious guy, he was interesting, and he wasn’t the usual type of guy that… Click To Tweet

27. “Teams share the burden and divide the grief.”

  • The source: Doug Smith (attributed)
  • How did he lead: Former professional ice hockey enforcer.
'Teams share the burden and divide the grief.' - Doug Smith | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

28. “If you are able to communicate your feelings, you can speak an international, very articulate language.”

  • The source: Henry Winkler, in a speech to the 1988 Conference of Orton Dyslexia Society in Los Angeles — later quoted in a profile for Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity 
  • How did he lead: Iconic actor who overcame dyslexia and a poor academic record to attain huge fame as “The Fonz” in the ‘70s. He didn’t win an Emmy till 2018, for an unforgettable performance in HBO’s ‘Barry’. He actually won the United Nations Peace Prize for his dedicated philanthropy and activism related to children’s causes.
'If you are able to communicate your feelings, you can speak an international, very articulate language.' - Henry Winkler | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

29. “We’re in this together, and if we united and we inter-culturally cooperated, then that might be the key to humanity’s survival.”

  • The source: Jeremy Gilley, TED Talk lecture
  • How did he lead: Filmmaker, founder of Peace One Day.
'We're in this together, and if we united and we inter-culturally cooperated, then that might be the key to humanity's survival.' - Jeremy Gilley | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

30. “A leader is someone who steps back from the entire system and tries to build a more collaborative, more innovative system that will work over the long term.”

  • The source: Robert Reich (attributed)
  • How did he lead: American Democratic political pundit and professor; former Secretary of Labor who was later on Barack Obama’s economic transition advisory board.
'A leader is someone who steps back from the entire system and tries to build a more collaborative, more innovative system that will work over the long term.' - Robert Reich | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

 

Famous quotes about teamwork and collaboration

31. “Rock never meant the same thing to everyone, but when I was growing up in the late seventies, everyone could identify the five, ten bands that formed the center.”

  • The source: Chris Cornell, to Details magazine2012
  • How did he lead? Vocalist and musician at the epicenter of the grunge movement as lead vocalist of Soundgarden.
'Rock never meant the same thing to everyone, but when I was growing up in the late seventies, everyone could identify the five, ten bands that formed the center.' - Chris Cornell | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

32. “If two men on the same job agree all the time, then one is useless. If they disagree all the time, both are useless.”

  • The source: Darryl F. Zanuck
  • How did he lead: Old-school Hollywood studio kingpin and movie producer.
'If two men on the same job agree all the time, then one is useless. If they disagree all the time, both are useless.' - Darryl F. Zanuck | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

33. “As a leader your job is to do everything in your power to create the perfect conditions for success by benching your ego and inspiring your team to play the game the right way.”

  • The source: Phil Jackson, in ‘Eleven Rings: The Soul of Success’
  • How did he lead: The winner of the most NBA championships in the league’s history, Jackson was also a great player and an NBA executive — currently the President of the New York Knicks.
'As a leader your job is to do everything in your power to create the perfect conditions for success by benching your ego and inspiring your team to play the game the right way.' - Phil Jackson | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

34. “Individually we are one drop; but together we are an ocean.”

  • The source: Ryunosuke Satoro
  • How did he lead: Beloved writer known as the “father of the Japanese short story.”
'Individually we are one drop; but together we are an ocean.' - Ryunosuke Satoro | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

 


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Quotes to inspire collaboration and creativity:

Quotes to inspire collaboration and creativity:

1. “I like the idea of collaboration (with people like that) —  it pushes you. It’s a richer experience.”

  • The source: Frank Gehry, TED 2002
  • How did he lead: The most famous postmodern architect.
'I like the idea of collaboration (with people like that) — it pushes you. It's a richer experience.' - Frank Gehry | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

2. “Despair shows us the limit of our imagination. Imagination shared creates collaboration, and collaboration creates community, and community inspires social change.”

  • The source: Terry Tempest Williams, from ‘Moonrise: The Power of Women Leading from the Heart’
  • How did she lead: Conservationist and voice for social change.
'Despair shows us the limit of our imagination. Imagination shared creates collaboration, and collaboration creates community, and community inspires social change.' - Terry Tempest Williams | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

3. “I like working with people. I believe change can only come through collaboration.”

  • The source: Alain de Botton, interview with The Independent
  • How did he lead: Philosopher, historian and author who helped found London’s School of Life.
'I like working with people. I believe change can only come through collaboration.' - Alain de Botton | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

4. “Collaboration allows us to know more than we are capable of knowing by ourselves.”

  • The source: Paul Solarz, in a Tweet
  • How did he lead: Leading the little children first, this Westgate Elementary School educator and teacher-influencer is the author of ‘Learn Like a PIRATE: Empower Your Students to Collaborate, Lead, and Succeed’.
'Collaboration allows us to know more than we are capable of knowing by ourselves.' - Paul Solarz | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

5. “Collaboration is the essence of life. The wind, bees and flowers work together, to spread the pollen.”

  • The source: Amit Ray, in ‘Mindfulness Living in the Moment — Living in the Breath’
  • How did he lead: Scientist turned spiritual thinker. His area of scientific research deals with great existential questions like the nature of consciousness.
'Collaboration is the essence of life. The wind, bees and flowers work together, to spread the pollen.' - Amit Ray | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

6. “Collaboration allows teachers to capture each other’s fund of collective intelligence.”

  • The source: Mike Schmoker
  • How did he lead: Educator and student writing advocate, mostly active now as a speaker and bestselling author.
'Collaboration allows teachers to capture each other’s fund of collective intelligence.' - Mike Schmoker | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

7. “Some collaboration has to take place in the mind… before the art of creation can be accomplished. Some marriage of opposites has to be consummated.”

  • The source: Virginia Woolf, in ‘A Room of One’s Own’
  • How did she lead: English modernist novelist; one of the leading literary lights of the 20th century.
'Some collaboration has to take place in the mind... before the art of creation can be accomplished. Some marriage of opposites has to be consummated.' - Virginia Woolf | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

 

'Collaboration is the best way to work… Everyone's there because they have a set of skills to offer across the board' - Antony Starr

8. “Collaboration is the best way to work… Everyone’s there because they have a set of skills to offer across the board.”

  • The source: Antony Starr
  • How did he lead: This versatile Kiwi actor went from a hit comedy in New Zealand to the gritty Cinemax pulp crime drama ‘Banshee’and is about to take on yet another genre in Amazon Prime superhero show ‘The Boys’.
'Collaboration is the best way to work… Everyone's there because they have a set of skills to offer across the board.' - Antony Starr | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

9. “Collaboration is much like a birth. The song that springs forth resembles each one of us to a degree, but it’s the kind of thing that would never be born from just one of us sitting down with a guitar.”

'Collaboration is much like a birth. The song that springs forth resembles each one of us to a degree, but it’s the kind of thing that would never be born from just one of us sitting down with a guitar.' - Grant-Lee Phillips | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

10. “Collaboration is a key part of the success of any organization, executed through a clearly defined vision and mission and based on transparency and constant communication.”

'Collaboration is a key part of the success of any organization, executed through a clearly defined vision and mission and based on transparency and constant communication.' - Dinesh Paliwal | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

11. “Collaboration is an important part of the process, and ego is never a part of it.”

  • The source: Mack Wilberg, interview with Broadway World
  • How did he lead: Conductor and arranger Mack Wilberg helps shape the celestial choral music of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. He’s been music director there since 2008.
'Collaboration is an important part of the process, and ego is never a part of it.' - Mack Wilberg | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

12. “Life is a collaboration, it’s not a solo act.”

  • The source: Tim Gunn to The New York Times2010
  • How did he lead: Fashion guru and television host with a much anticipated new show on Amazon.
'Life is a collaboration, it's not a solo act.' - Tim Gunn | #Teamwork | #Quotes Click To Tweet

And a bonus for the ages… “It’ll be just like senior year except funner.”

And number 47 would be... 'It'll be just like senior year except funner.' - Elle Woods in 'Legally Blonde' | #Teamwork | #Collaboration Click To Tweet

Even a little more inspiration…

Teamwork and collaboration come in all forms. Still one of the biggest parenting wins of the past decade, this father-kid trio’s cover of Depeche Mode’s “Everything Counts” should help anyone find and understand the joy of how working together can make something magical.

Lena Katz

About Lena

Lena Katz's credits as a development producer, casting producer and locations manager include cable TV (WEtv, Revolt, HGTV), and digital-first productions (WhaleRock, mikeroweWORKS, Tastemade). She worked directly for major brands including Suzuki, Hormel and Brown-Forman. Learn more about her company at Variable Content.

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