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Get Motivated

25 Quotables from the 99U Conference

Pithy wisdom on putting ideas into action from Jack Dorsey, John Maeda, Seth Godin, Jill Greenberg, and many more.

In just a few weeks on May 3-4, 2012 in New York City, we’ll be presenting Behance’s fourth annual 99U Conference, two days fully focused on exploring the mechanics of making ideas happen. We’ve curated an incredible speaker lineup for 2012, and it’s going to be an absolute knockout event.

For those of you who won’t be joining us live, we’ll be rolling out loads of awesome coverage during & afterwards, including a firehose of tweets from @99U, podcasts and stories from WNYC’s Radiolab, illustrations from Wendy MacNaughton, and, of course, videos of all the 20-minute speaker talks.

In the meantime, we compiled a shortlist of quotables from the past three years’ worth of 99% Conferences to get into the idea execution spirit.

“We’re not meant to operate like computers. Human beings are designed to pulse between spending/renewing energy.” Tony Schwartz


“Groundbreaking innovators generate and execute far more ideas.” Frans Johansson


“You can’t get to wonderful without passing through alright.”
Andrew Zuckerman (via Bill Withers) #99conf


“‘Luck’ is recognizing when the situation encourages build out and execution.” Jack Dorsey #99conf


“What you do for a living is not be creative, what you do for a living is ship.” Seth Godin #99conf


“When you give something, just for the joy of creating, it always comes back on a much larger scale.” Ji Lee #99conf


“If you find something that you feel you belong to, become a groupie and a fan, and then a critic.” Starlee Kine #99conf


“The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.” Fred Wilson (via Nassim N Taleb) #99con


“All artists yearn to struggle, when they struggle they know they’re alive.” John Maeda #99conf


“Reduce everything you want to do, to an action you can do right now.” Jason Randal #99conf


“If you’re not creating waves, then you’re not pushing enough.” Jared Cohen #99conf


“Prototype as if you are right. Listen as if you are wrong.” Diego Rodriguez #99conf


“Your work is your own private megaphone to tell the world what you believe.” Simon Sinek #99conf


“Instead of reflecting on the past, predict the future.” Chris Guillebeau #99conf


“Align your inner vision with your outer work.” Martin Ping #99conf


“When fear and doubt come into play, lead with possibility.” Laura Guido-Clark #99conf


“Figure out what’s realistic, and then just do it.” Jake Nickell #99conf


“Experts step outside their comfort zone and study themselves failing.” Josh Foer #99conf


“Crazy is a compliment.” Linda Rottenberg #99conf


“The problem contains the solution.” Michael Bierut #99conf


“A good partnership is more than the sum of its parts.” Sigi Moeslinger #99conf


“Controversy gets your work out there.” Jill Greenberg #99conf


“Think big, and act small.” Leslie Koch #99conf


“Our mantra: brutal prioritization, maniacal focus.” Jeffrey Kalmikoff #99conf

Jocelyn K. Glei

A writer and the founding editor of 99U, Jocelyn K. Glei is obsessed with how to make great creative work in the Age of Distraction. Her latest book is Unsubscribe: How to Kill Email Anxiety, Avoid Distraction, and Get Real Work Done. Her previous works include the 99U’s own bestselling book series: Manage Your Day-to-Day, Maximize Your Potential, and Make Your Mark. Follow her @jkglei.

Comments (16)
  • April Blankenship

    Some great words of wisdom! Linda Rottenberg’s and Fred Wilson’s are my favorites!

  • электромонтажный инструмент

    Pretty interesting site you’ve got here. Thanks for it. I like such topics and anything that is connected to them.

  • cktygrett

    is there a misspelling in Seth Godin’s quote? (“ship”?)

    If not, the guy is even more brilliant than previously acknowledged.

  • jkglei

    No, that’s accurate. Seth means “shipping” the final products of our creative endeavors. Watch his 99% talk for more info:

  • Matthew

    So many wonderful tidbits. Thank you!

  • dissertation online help

    “Think big, and act small.” (c)

  • research paper

    Oh… Cool! Thank you! I love this post!

  • resume writers

    Amaizing wonderfull!

  • Jason Z

    Truly inspiring. I plan to read/meditate on this list every day for a week, burn the concepts into my subconscious and make them my own …

  • Frankie John™

    Great post, I like this!.

  • Bill Nigh

    Good stuff.

  • Barefootdesigns

    Excellent insight.   Study everything you can about something and then proceed as if you knew nothing, had found no limitations in tradition or tools.   You can do virtually anything if you want it bad enough, working fearlessly, with love and total dedication.  

  • dia

    What an insight .! I am speechless here,every next quote is complementary. We just need to focus once on the words and then in our lives and there we would be i guess reall sucessfull ..great Lines:)

  • James

    Love This!

    I always link back to your articles on my website –

    However, I think I’m gonna be snagging a few of these for my daily insights/quotes page –

    Don’t you worry though. I’m totally keeping the hashtags!

    Thanks for all your great ideas 99% and actually making them happen 🙂

    PS – I think this one is my favorite 

    “Instead of reflecting on the past, predict the future.” – Chris Guillebeau 

  • fiap

    want a ticket to this years conference ?? contact me @

  • alohaglobal

    Very inspirational…
    Too bad your conference name was hijacked by the Communists.

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