Motivational Quotes for HR, Recruiting and Leadership

We all need motivation from time to time, and for myself, I have found that sometimes visual quotes and aids are the best way to get me fired up, motivated, and ready to go quickly without a lot of time spent reading, listening to podcasts or talking to a peer or mentor. I’m not saying that those things are not important, however, sometimes you just need a little kick in the pants to help push you through the day. Maybe it’s just enough to help you sludge through the pile of emails you have or working through that ever-growing to-do list.

I like to start my day with a motivational quote, and every day I arrive at my coworking space, Duo Works, I see the above quote from Vince Lombardi. It’s hard not to be motivated as I walk through the door giving myself a gentle nudge that in order to meet and achieve my personal or professional goals, I’m going to have to work and work hard. It’s over the last year or so I’ve been collecting my favorite quotes which I thought given that today is a milestone for me (it’s my 40th birthday), I thought I would share with you.

Best Inspirational Quotes for HR, Leadership, and Recruiting

These are some of my favorite quotes that I use to push through the day, give a little extra, and inspire me to keep grinding a project whether it’s for myself, a client, or for my family.


“If you think hiring professionals is expensive, try hiring amateurs.” – Anonymous


“Human Resources isn’t a thing we do. It’s the thing that runs our business.” – Steve Wynn, Wynn Las Vegas


“Time spent on hiring, is time well spent.” – Robert Half


“The hardest challenge being an HR is that sometimes you have to be the LAWYER, the JUDGE and the HANGMAN.” – Hassan Choughari


“Without the right succession planning put to play in human resources, we build for the future without a future.” – Mmanti Umoh


“Children imitate their parents, employees their managers.” – Amit Kalantri


“The body may be bought with a paycheck but the heart is earned with a purpose.” – Angela Lynne Craig


“If you fulfill the wishes of your employees, the employees will fulfill your visions.” – Amit Kalantri


“If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys.”— Chinese Proverb


The Science Behind Why Quotes Motivate Us

Some of the appeal of quotes as points of inspiration are likely rooted in biology. In fact, one media psychology expert and communications consultant Scott Sobel, founder of Media & Communications Strategies, Inc. in Washington, D.C says, “Humans are aspirational. We want to look up to role models and leaders and follow what they ask,” he says. “Leaders and their words–inspirational quotes–affect us on a primal level.”

Below is a collection of 45  quote images of my favorite HR, workplace and leadership quotes I’ve been collecting these last couple of years. You are welcome to save the images, share on social media, and keep for when you are in need of some inspiration of your own. What’s your favorite quote? Leave a comment with your favorite in the comments section below.

Be on the lookout on Twitter as I kick off #workologyquotes. It’s an ongoing series of human resources, recruiting and leadership quotes in image form like you see below. I’ll be posting and you are welcome too as well. Looking forward to inspiring each other together.


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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.

Reader Interactions


  1. Beth says

    This is a great idea, Jessica! I’m always looking for motivational HR quotes. I’m looking up the hashtag as I type this, and Recruitee ( will partake in #workologyquotes. We post some of our own sometimes, so check ’em out! 🙂

  2. Ademar says

    Great job!!, they are amazing!!, I like this quote ‘Children imitate their parents, employees their managers’, because it tells us that we must be a good leader so that the people who follow us also follow the path we have set to reach our goals.

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