Training and Development Quotes to Motivate Your L&D Team

training and development quotes

Since it’s the beginning of a new year, it’s time to stoke the flames of inspiration in your training team. From philosophers and great thinkers to today’s leading eLearning experts, we’ve rounded up some motivational training and development quotes to get your team fired up.

Some of these quotes will inspire you to think differently about learning. Others will get you thinking about how you design training, your learning strategy, and how you work as a team to deliver the best training possible.


Instructional Design Quotes

Instructional designers are the bridge between knowledge and learning for the workforce. The courses they design, whether it’s eLearning or ILT, are pivotal to the success of the organization. So, here are some training and development quotes to inspire your instructional designers to do their best work:

training quotes
  1. “We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.” – Peter Drucker
  1. “You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.” –Richard Branson
  1. “Change is the end result of all true learning.” ― Leo Buscaglia
  1. Instructional designers need to run, not walk, away from classroom-based thinking and get to the point of providing short, quick, business-focused learning points that are easily accessible when and where our learners need them. This means leveraging new technologies to deliver non-traditional instruction.” – Karl M. Kapp
  1. “Spoon feeding in the long run teaches us nothing but the shape of the spoon.” – E.M. Forster
  1. “In the end we retain from our studies only that which we practically apply.” – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
  1. “Practice design, not decoration: Don’t just make pretty talking points. Instead, display information in a way that makes complex information clear.” —Nancy Duarte
  1. “Every student can learn, just not on the same day, or the same way.” –George Evans
  1. “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” – W.B. Yeats
  1. “Best way to respect learners: Use techniques that research has proven to work. Help people reach their goals without wasting their time.” —Cathy Moore
  1. “He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
  1. “If knowledge is a power, then learning is a superpower.” – Jim Kwik
  1. “Think about what your learners need to do with that information after the course is finished and design around that.” —Matthew Guyan
  1. “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin
  1. “You can’t teach people everything they need to know. The best you can do is position them where they can find what they need to know when they need to know it.” —Seymour Papert
  1. “Boring to make is boring to take.” —Lisa Stortz

Agile Learning Quotes

Agile Learning is the new frontier for L&D. While many have already begun to adopt Agile or Agile Learning frameworks, it’s the core philosophy at the heart of Agile that is the key to successful implementation. With that in mind, here are some training and development quotes to help keep Agile values at the heart of your learning design processes:

quotes about learning and development
  1. “In a time of drastic change it is the learners who inherit the future. The learned usually find themselves equipped to live in a world that no longer exists.” – Eric Hoffer
  1. “Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.” – Stephen Hawking
  1. “There is a way to do it better — find it!” – Thomas A. Edison
  1. “Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.” – John Wooden
  1. “The important thing is not your process. The important thing is your process for improving your process.” –  Henrik Kniberg
  1. “The world is moving so fast these days that the man who says it can’t be done is generally interrupted by someone doing it” – Elbert Hubbard
  1. “Be prepared to cut your losses – Canceling bad projects early is success because you save time, money and resources that can be applied to better opportunities.” – Ian Spence and Kurt Bittner (Agile authors)
  1. “Let’s execute along this strategy, but know that we’ll probably get some of this wrong, so be open to changing it.“ – A.G. Lafley

Learning Strategy

Developing a learning strategy is one thing – implementing it (and doing so successfully) is another. It’s easy to get lost in the weeds when it comes to your learning strategy, so here are some wise words from the best strategists around to make sure your training and development plans stick:

learning quotes for business
  1. “If you think education is expensive, try estimating the cost of ignorance.” — Howard Gardner
  1. “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” –Alvin Toffler
  1. “Knowing is not enough; We must apply. Willing is not enough; We must do.”  –Bruce Lee
  1. “No matter how good the team or how efficient the methodology, if we’re not solving the right problem, the project fails.” – Woody Williams
  1. “The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do.” – Michael Porter
  1. “However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.” – Winston Churchill
  1. “Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” – Sun Tzu
  1. “The only thing worse than training your employees and having them leave is not training them and having them stay.” — Henry Ford
  1. “If you continue training the same way you’ve always trained, don’t expect to get better results.” —Jim Crapko
  1. “Learn to ask of all actions, “Why are they doing that?” Starting with your own.” –  Marcus Aurelius

Inspirational Quotes About Learning

Last but not least, it’s easy to forget the true value of your work when deadlines are looming and you can’t do things exactly the way you would like. But the design and delivery of learning deserves to be appreciated, so here are some training and development quotes to inspire instructional designers, learning developers, and learners alike:

  1. “The beautiful thing about learning is that nobody can take it away from you.” – B.B. King
  1. “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” – Mahatma Gandhi
  1. “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr.  Seuss
  1. “Learning never exhausts the mind.” – Leonardo da Vinci
  1. “Curiosity is the wick in the candle of learning.” ―William Arthur Ward
  1. “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” – Henry Ford
  1. “Try to learn something about everything and everything about something.” – Thomas H. Huxley
  1. “Those people who develop the ability to continuously acquire new and better forms of knowledge that they can apply to their work and to their lives will be the movers and shakers in our society for the indefinite future.” – Brian Tracy
  1. “Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors.” — African Proverb
  1. “Anything worth doing well is worth doing poorly at first.” — Ray Congdon
  1. “When you learn, teach. When you get, give.” – Maya Angelou
  1. “I never lose. I either win or learn.” –  Nelson Mandela
  1. “I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it.” –  Pablo Picasso

These pearls of wisdom serve as great pick-me-ups when you need a spark of inspiration. Hopefully, these training and development quotes will help put the joy and creativity back into your learning design!

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Training and Development Quotes to Motivate Your L&D Team