The Power of Adam Grant Quotes: Inspiring Change and Innovation

Adam Grant
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Adam Grant is a renowned psychologist, author, and speaker who has inspired millions of people with his insights on work, creativity, and leadership.

He is the host of the popular podcast WorkLife and the author of best-selling books such as Give and Take, Originals, and Think Again.

In this article, we have compiled some of his most memorable quotes that will challenge you to rethink your assumptions, embrace your curiosity, and become a more generous and original thinker.

Summary Of Adam Grant’s Life

Name Adam Grant
Profession Organizational psychologist, author, and professor
Birth Year 1981
Birthplace Michigan, United States
Education Bachelor’s degree from Harvard University; Ph.D. in organizational psychology from the University of Michigan
Career Joined the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania as a professor of management
Research Focus Workplace motivation, leadership, and success
Approach Blends academic insights with practical applications
Notable Books “Give and Take,” “Originals”
Book Topics Giving and taking in the workplace, fostering creativity and innovation
Recognition Recognized as one of the world’s top management thinkers; received multiple awards
Industry Involvement Sought-after speaker and consultant; worked with Fortune 500 companies
Influence TED Talks and podcasts with millions of views and downloads
Contributions Significant contributions to the understanding of work, motivation, and success
Prominence Prominent figure admired for bridging academic knowledge and real-world application

5 Facts About Adam Grant

  • He was one of only two undergraduate students in Wharton history to earn three majors, studying psychology, operations and information management, and economics.
  •  He is the youngest-ever tenured professor in Wharton’s history.
  •  He published his first book when he was only 24, making him the youngest professor ever to receive a major book advance, at the time.
  •  He’s a five-time TED speaker.
  •  He has been listed by Fortune as one of the world’s top forty business professors, and by the Huffington Post as one of the world’s top fifty leaders.

Adam Grant Related Book Summaries

Give and Take

Adam M. Grant

An image of a book: Give and Take
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Do you think success depends on talent, effort, or luck? Well, you’re right, but you might have ignored a fourth crucial element: interaction with people. And when you’re dealing with people, should you try to squeeze everything you can get out of them, or should you contribute to their well-being regardless of what you’ll get in return? Which method can best pave your way to success? This book will shatter your misconceptions and show you that only through giving can you truly achieve lasting success.

Option B

Sheryl Sandberg, Adam Grant

An image of a book: Option B
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In 2015, Business Executive Sheryl Sandberg suffered the unexpected loss of her husband. She tried to come to terms with her grief, but its surprising intensity and persistence caused her prolonged suffering. With the aid of her friend and psychologist Adam Grant, Sandberg experienced the tremendous power of resilience and emerged from her plight with a renewed sense of joy. She shares her experience of using resilience to help herself and, in doing so, shows us how to cultivate resilience in our own lives and achieve growth after a traumatic event.

Think Again

Adam Grant

Adam Grant Quotes
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Most of us see mistakes as something to be avoided and being wrong as something undesirable. In this book, however, Adam Grant explores the importance of rethinking in our lives and shows us why embracing the art of being wrong is the only way to get closer to the truth. In addition to urging us to practice the art of rethinking in our own lives, Grant also provides tips on how to influence others to re-examine their beliefs and how to foster a culture of continuous relearning in our organizations.


Adam M. Grant

Adam Grant Quotes
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Originality means subversion. Even the activity of innovation itself also needs to be subverted. Where do original ideas come from? How do we identify an original idea that can be accepted by the market? How do we turn an original idea into reality? This book introduces a complete set of strategies for the creation, selection, and implementation of original ideas, allowing us to better take on and manage risks during the innovation process and become non-conformists who change the world.

Most Famous Adam Grant Quotes

  • “The most meaningful way to succeed is to help others succeed.” – Adam Grant

  • “Focus attention and energy on making a difference in the lives of others, and success might follow as a by-product.” – Adam Grant
  • “Highly successful people have three things in common: motivation, ability, and opportunity.” – Adam Grant
Adam Grant Quotes
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  • “A hallmark of wisdom is knowing when it’s time to abandon some of your most treasured tools — and some of the most cherished parts of your identity.” – Adam Grant
Adam Grant Quotes
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  • “If we want to forecast whether the originators of a novel idea will be successful, we need to look beyond the enthusiasm they express about their ideas and focus on the enthusiasm for execution that they reveal through their actions.” – Adam Grant
  • “Changing your mind doesn’t make you a flip-flopper or a hypocrite. It means you were open to learning.” – Adam Grant
Adam Grant Quotes
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  • “Focusing on results might be good for short-term performance, but it can be an obstacle to long-term learning.” – Adam Grant
  • “I think of productivity as using your time to accomplish things of value to you and others.” – Adam Grant
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  • “It’s ironic that when you go through a tragedy, you appreciate more. You realize how fragile life is and that there are so many things to still be thankful for.” – Adam Grant

Adam Grant Quotes About Leadership

What is leadership according to Adam Grant.? Know it through some of his quotes.

  • “Complex problems like pandemics, climate change, and political polarization call on us to stay mentally flexible.” – Adam Grant
  • “We live in a rapidly changing world, where we need to spend as much time rethinking as we do thinking.” – Adam Grant
  • “My favorite bias is the ‘I’m not biased’ bias, in which people believe they’re more objective than others.” – Adam Grant
  • “What distinguishes the greatest leaders of our time, it’s that success is very rarely a goal for them; it’s a byproduct of other goals that they have.” – Adam Grant
  • “Your ‘should self’ puts the alarm clock across the room at night so your ‘want self’ can’t reach the snooze button in the morning.” – Adam Grant
  • “No one wants to hear everything that’s in your head. They just want you to live up to what comes out of your mouth.” – Adam Grant
  • “When you’re dealing with an ambivalent relationship, you’re constantly on guard, grappling with questions of trust.” – Adam
  • “Rather than looking outward in an attempt to predict the outcome, you turn inward to your identity. You base the decision on who you are – or who you want to be.” – Adam Grant
  • “Strong leaders engage their critics and make themselves stronger. Weak leaders silence their critics and make themselves weaker.” – Adam Grant
  • “A good debate is not a war. It’s not even a tug-of-war… it’s more like a dance that hasn’t been choreographed.” – Adam Grant
  • “For startups, there’s so much pivoting that’s required that if you have a bunch of sheep, you’re in bad shape.” – Adam Grant
  • “The most effective leaders score high in both confidence AND humility.” – Adam Grant

Adam Grant Short Quotes

  • “Don’t criticize yourself while you’re creating.” – Adam Grant
  • Arrogance leaves us blind to our weaknesses.” – Adam Grant
  • “It’s never too late to become original.” – Adam Grant
  • “Everyone knows more than you about something.” – Adam Grant
  • “There’s a wealth of evidence that people want to do meaningful work.” – Adam Grant
  • “Passions are developed, not just discovered.” – Adam Grant
  • “Our identities are open systems, and so are our lives.” – Adam Grant
  • “Conformity is dangerous.” – Adam Grant
  • “Stop asking kids what they want to be when they grow up.” – Adam Grant
  • “Enemies make better allies than frenemies.” – Adam Grant
  • “It takes confident humility to admit that we’re in a work in progress.” – Adam Grant

Givers and Takers: Adam Grant Quotes

Adam Grant describes the two personality types—the givers and the takers—in the quotes that follow.

  •  “If you want to be a generous giver, you have to watch out for selfish takers.”  Adam Grant
  •  “I spend a lot of my time trying to help leaders build cultures of productive givers.” Adam Grant
  •  “Takers are self-serving in their interactions. It’s all about what you can do for me.” Adam Grant
  •  “Successful givers secure their oxygen masks before coming to the assistance of others. Although their motives may be less purely altruistic, their actions prove more altruistic because they give more.” Adam Grant
  • “The opposite of an underminer is a supporter. When colleagues are supportive, they go out of their way to be givers rather than takers, working to enhance our productivity, make us look good, share ideas, and provide the timely help.” Adam Grant

Quotes From Think Again by Adam Grant

Below are quotes that were particularly insightful in this helpful book:

  • “Rethinking is a skill set, but it’s also a mindset (16).” – Adam Grant
  • “If knowledge is power, knowing what we don’t know is wisdom (28).” – Adam Grant
  • “Our convictions can lock us in prisons of our own making. The solution is not to decelerate our thinking—it’s to accelerate our rethinking (29).” – Adam Grant
  • “If we’re certain that we know something, we have no reason to look for gaps and flaws in our knowledge—let alone fill or correct them (42).” – Adam Grant
  • “Uncertainty primes us to ask questions and absorb new ideas (53).” – Adam Grant
  • “A key step is getting them to do some counterfactual thinking: helping them consider what they’d believe if they were living in an alternative reality (136).” – Adam Grant
  • “When we try to convince people to think again, our first instinct is usually to start talking. Yet the most effective way to help others open their minds is often to listen (151).” – Adam Grant
  • “Many communicators try to make themselves look smart. Great listeners are more interested in making their audiences feel smart (158).” – Adam Grant
  • “Psychologists find that people will ignore or even deny the existence of a problem if they’re not fond of the solution (175).” – Adam Grant


I hope you enjoyed reading these inspiring and insightful Adam Grant quotes.

His books and podcasts are full of valuable lessons and stories that can help you grow personally and professionally.

If you want to learn more from him and other influential thinkers, check out my website for more content about quotes.







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