The Great Book of Peterisms

Just to be clear and give credit where due, none of these are original to me. These have been collected over the years from readings, conversations, speakers, presentations mentors, billboards, fortune cookies, friends, relatives, clients, employees, and co-workers. I have tried to give credit where I could.

By the way my pronoun is “whatever” and my tombstone will say “I told you I was sick” so I get the last word in.

“You don’t have to have an opinion about that. I think about that all the time—I don’t have to have an opinion about this, I can just let it be, I can ignore it, I can realize it doesn’t pertain to me, or I can just see it as it is. I don’t need to say that it’s good or bad, fair or unfair—it just is. I’m going to look at it as an objective piece of information. It doesn’t need me projecting my thoughts or beliefs or perceptions on it. You don’t have to have an opinion about this.” – Marcus Aurelius

“If you want a golden rule that will fit everybody, this is it: Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” — William Morris (I had to wiki him when I read this quote)

“Even a dead cat bounces once” – Economist Brian Beaulieu in reference to the Brandon stock market rebounds.

“Leadership consists of nothing but taking responsibility for everything that goes wrong and giving your subordinates credit for everything that goes well” – Eisenhower

“Be careful to leave your sons well instructed rather than rich, for the hopes of the instructed are better than the wealth of the ignorant.” – The Discourses, CXLV

“I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve (or save) the world and a desire to enjoy (or savor) the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.”-E.B. White

“A good plan, violently executed now, is better than a perfect plan next week” — George Patton

“Efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right thing.” – Team of Teams

“If you have to pick a side, you’ve already lost.’ -Rick Desens. 

“Learn to say “no” because every time you say yes to something you don’t really want to do, you are saying no to the things you are doing or want to do” – Tom Hanks

“9 women can’t give you a baby in 1 month.” – Ed Holmann

“No risk it, no biscuit.” – Bruce Ariens

“Nothing travels faster than the speed of light with the possible exception of bad news, which obeys its own special laws.” – Douglas Adams

“Don’t Panic”-Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy

“Confidence is going after Moby Dick in a row boat and packing the tartar sauce” – Zig Ziglar

“Our grass isn’t right for everyone”.-Ted Rolfs

“Take the time to do it right because we don’t have time to do it again.” – Carl Rathmann

“I would rather deal with harsh reality than living in false hope.”

“Never put yourself in a position where you are afraid of the truth”-Winston Churchill through Bob

“We’re paid to be productive, not busy.”

“There is no shortage of great ideas, but rather a shortage of initiative to use them”

“Good fences make good neighbors.”

“Stereotypes make things so much easier”-Unnamed mentor

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” -Churchill 

“If you see something wrong, you can either do something or nothing. Nothing’s already been tried.” – Wonder Woman

“Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered” – Jim Graff

“When starting at the bottom, be willing to learn from those at the top.”

“Never let a good crisis go to waste.”-Some dipshit in politics 

“The tail is only there to support the teeth.”-Rumsfeld

“If you want traction, you first need friction.”

“F-E-A-R has two meanings: ‘Forget Everything And Run’ or ‘Face Everything And Rise.’ The choice is yours.” – Zig Ziglar

“Government does two things well, nothing and overreact.” -Rumsfeld’s Rules

“Trouble with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.”

“What you see is what you get. What you don’t see gets you.”

“You go to war with the army you have, not the army you might wish to have.”

“Three kinds of people. Those that make things happen, those that watch things happen, and those that wonder what happened.”

“Leadership is by consent, not command. Leaders must persuade.”

“Don’t let the urgent crowd out the important.”

“Disagreement is not disloyalty.”

“The world is run by those who show up.”

“If you expect people to be in on the landing, include them in the takeoff.”

“Prune businesses, products, activities, and people annually.” 

“Anyone has the ability to review something and make it better, few are able to identify what is missing.”

“Talent hits a target no one else can hit, genius hits a target no one else can see.”

“Never hire anyone you can’t fire.”

“If you are coasting, you’re going downhill.” 

“Working from your inbox is working on other people’s priorities.” 

“If you can’t list your top 3 priorities, you don’t have any.”

“No plan survives first contact with the enemy.” 

“Those who know don’t talk. Those who talk don’t know.” 

“Warning time not used is wasted time. It’s like a runway behind the pilot.”

“Never assume the other guy will never do something you would never do.”

Sometimes winners are the ones willing to do what others wouldn’t.” 

“First reports are often wrong.”

“Proper preparation prevents poor performance.”

“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”

“Speed kills (wins). It creates opportunity, denies options, and hastens the enemy’s collapse.” 

“Trust leaves on horseback but returns on foot.” 

“If it doesn’t go easy, force it.”

“Keep one in the clip.” – John Schira 

“You always have two choices: your commitment versus your fear.”

“If you don’t like change, you’re going to like irrelevance even less.”

“There are losers, users, and fusers.  How are you making the pie bigger for everyone to share.”

“God gave you two ears and one mouth for a reason.”

“Don’t confuse the success of the channel or activity with the contribution to the business.” – @Robert_Rose @BMA_Milwaukee

8 Things to Build a Business -Howard Trudell, CEO 1871

  1. Tell a simple story
  2. Keep raising the bar
  3. Get started! The screenplay is never the movie that is made but you need to start somewhere
  4. Make cheap mistakes
  5. Make room for people
  6. Can’t add value without values
  7. Run like the wind and don’t look back
  8. Don’t think for a minute that you’re doing it for someone else.

“Only winners decide what war crimes are.”

“Nail it then scale it.”

“Have in-game amnesia (short term memory) and focus forward and do what is right today.”

“If you are in a hole, stop digging!”

“You can put more steak sauce on your hot dog but it is still a wiener.”

“It’s a business not a romance.”

“Sometimes the baby actually is ugly (tell people when they have a bad idea)”

“Hope” is not ‘strategic’.”

“You get what you work for, not what you wish for.”

“Values change based on life stage and business stage so be careful not to serve too many masters.”

“Have a goal….If you do not know where you are going, any road will get you there.”

“You don’t build a lighthouse to go find ships.” – Heather Mangold

“2 different kinds of people…..Those that allow circumstances to change them and those that go change the circumstances.”

“If you have a 6 month sales cycle, then doing nothing today guarantees you will have nothing 6 months from now.”

“Mentoring can be two-way.”

“Don’t let the limitations of others define you.”

“I don’t know” used to mean you were dumb or ignorant, now it just means you are lazy…..Google it!

“The first thing you should do before starting a business is to go out and talk to 100 prospective customers.”

“Never teach a pig to sing…..It wastes your time and annoys the pig.”-From the office wall of Carl Rathmann

“If you want clear water, go to the head of the stream.”-Walter Goggins in Justified

“If all you have is a hammer, then every problem looks like a nail.”

“Do it or not. There is no try.” – Yoda, Jedi Master.

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese proverb.

“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” Henry Ford

“Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do, so throw off the bowlines, sail away from safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, Dream, Discover.” Mark Twain

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein

“I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.” – Steve Jobs

“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” – Walt Disney (before Wokahontus became a character)

“You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.” Wayne Gretzky

“There are no traffic jams on the extra mile.” – Zig Ziglar

“Do not be embarrassed by your failures, learn from them and start again.” – Richard Branson

“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius.

“It’s hard to beat a person who never gives up.” – Babe Ruth

“For all of the most important things, the timing always sucks. Waiting for a good time to quit your job? The stars will never align and the traffic lights of life will never all be green at the same time. The universe doesn’t conspire against you, but it doesn’t go out of its way to line up the pins either. Conditions are never perfect. “Someday” is a disease that will take your dreams to the grave with you. Pro and con lists are just as bad. If it’s important to you and you want to do it “eventually,” just do it and correct course along the way.”- Timothy Ferriss

“The media wants overnight successes (so they have someone to tear down). Ignore them. Ignore the early adopter critics that never have enough to play with. Ignore your investors that want proven tactics and predictable instant results. Listen instead to your real customers, to your vision and make something for the long haul. Because that’s how long it’s going to take, guys. – Seth Godin

“Don’t worry about funding if you don’t need it. Today it’s cheaper to start a business than ever.”- Noah Everett

“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” – Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft.

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” – Thomas Edison, inventor.

“Entrepreneurship is neither a science nor an art. It is a practice.” – Peter Drucker, management consultant, educator, and author.

“In the modern world of business, it is useless to be a creative, original thinker unless you can also sell what you create.” – David Ogilvy

“It doesn’t matter how many times you fail. It doesn’t matter how many times you almost get it right. No one is going to know or care about your failures, and neither should you. All you have to do is learn from them and those around you because all that matters in business is that you get it right once. Then everyone can tell you how lucky you are.” – Mark Cuban

“Success is how high you bounce after you hit bottom.” – General George Patton.

“Positive thinking will let you do everything better than negative thinking will.” – Zig Ziglar, author, salesman, and motivational speaker.

From Mark Rodgers – The Persuasion Equation

5 Characteristics of Persuasion (Scale of 1 to 10, you should be a …..)

  1. Assertiveness (7)
  2. Empathetic (8)
  3. Communication (10)
  4. Tenacious (5)
  5. Resilient (5)

80% of people are idealists, 20% are pragmatists……Guess what Peter is?

Users of persuasion: Mindless, Machiavellian, Savvy

“You need to have congruence in selling….can’t sell it if you don’t believe in it…….Shouldn’t sell motorcycles if you think they are dangerous and overpriced.”

“Where a person stands depends on where they sit.”

When talking to a new person, use the (FORM) framework to structure the conversation (F) Family (O) Occupation (R) Recreation (M) Motivation

ART: Acknowledge, Respond, Transition – OVERCOMING OBJECTIONS

Use the “Triad” to prove your point….Rule of 3’s.  3 examples of things…NOT 4.  3 is the charm, 4 is the harm.

“Can you show them what the price of doing nothing is?”

“Progress…..not perfection”

“When you pray for rain, you are going to have to deal with the mud too.”

“Every assassin needs a bullet maker.”-Bill King

“Anyone can lead in peacetime…..Real leadership comes through hard decisions in the battle.”

“You’re not superior, you’re not inferior, you’re just you.” – Psycho Cybernetics 

“Time is your biggest enemy.”

“Attunement, Buoyancy, Clarity” (New ABC’s of selling)

“40% of your time is already selling” (24 minutes of every hour)

“Givers Get. Takers kiss up and kick down”

“Don’t confuse the success of the activity with the contribution to the business.”

“Sell low and close high” – Jerry Lynn

“A hammer doesn’t swing itself” – Brad Van Damm

“The things that can be counted may not be worth counting.”

“Nobody knows until you expose” Jerry Lynn ( I ended up firing this guy!!!)

“Autopsies shouldn’t be conducted by the murder” – Ann Coulter after the RNC was investigating why they could not get anyone other than Trump on their ticket.

‘You don’t know your limits until you exceed them” – Rob Bob

“Profit is an attitude.” – Ted Rolfs

There is no more exhilarating of a feeling than being shot at and missed”- Maddog Mattis

”When tyranny becomes law, rebellion becomes duty.”-Thomas Jefferson

“What we do in life echoes in eternity.”-Maximus

“Destiny may ride with us today, but there is no reason for it to interfere with lunch”-Peter the Great (not me)

“The world suffers a lot. Not because of the violence of the bad people, but rather the silence of the good people.”-Napoleon

“Not everything that counts can be counted and not everything that is counted counts.”- Einstein

‘Iron Maiden has our field and that’s what we plow. We can only plow one field at a time; we don’t care what anyone else is doing with their field.’-Bruce Dickinson

Peter 3:16 – I actually flipped John 3:16 being the contrarian I am and made a play on Austin 3:16. I get that God so loved the world that he have his only son but Peter 3:16 states “I so love my son that I am trying to give him the world and all those who support him shall be given gratitude.”


About Peter C. Rathmann

Pirate Captain at Allis Tool & Machine Corp. and Warrior for The Neurodiverse in Manufacturing.

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