25 Homer Simpson Quotes You Should Never Follow If You Want To Succeed In Business

25 Homer Simpson Quotes You Should Never Follow If You Want To Succeed In Business

We all know who Homer Simpson is. He’s the goofy, simple-minded character from “The Simpsons.” A serial entrepreneur, Homer has tried and failed at many businesses; he’s tried to start an Internet company, a snow removal company, become a day-trader, a traveling “snake oil” salesman, a door-to-door-salesman and more. Through all his attempts, he’s doled out his best business advice proving his lessons learned. He’s even been included in the “Book of Business Quotations” alongside other business-savvy fictional characters like Don Draper and Gordon Gekko. Here are some of his more notable quotes:

1. “Okay, the trampoline was a bad idea. But you know what? At least I’m out there trying new things.”

In this episode, Homer starts a trampoline business where people pay to jump on the trampoline. The problem is, people keep getting hurt and it becomes a liability. Trying new things is not the problem, but making sure everything is in order beforehand is.

2. “The three little sentences that will get you through life. Number 1: Cover for me. Number 2: Oh, good idea, boss. Number 3: It was like that when I got here.”

Despite what Homer thinks, you actually can’t go through life making up excuses for yourselves and trying to get away with things. Eventually, it will catch up to. Just ask Bernie Madoff.

3. “How is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some of the old stuff out of my brain. Remember when I took that home wine making course, and I forgot how to drive?”

Contrary to popular belief, you can learn multiple things at the same time—and you should. This is especially true for business. If you’re a programmer, it doesn’t hurt to learn a bit of marketing, and vice versa. Being well-rounded can only help in the long run.

4. “Son, if you really want something in this life, you have to work for it. Now quiet! They’re about to announce the lottery numbers.”

Ahhh, preaching one thing and doing another. The odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are 1 in 175,223,510. The odds of getting what you want in life by working hard are probably, much, much greater.

5. Marge: “The plant said if you don’t come in tomorrow, don’t bother coming in Monday.”

Homer: “Woo-hoo! Four day weekend!”

Homer clearly doesn’t get it. A bit of our own advice: If you’re told to not come in Monday if you don’t come in tomorrow, you should probably come in tomorrow. And then work really hard.

6. “Marge, don’t discourage the boy! Weaseling out of things is important to learn. It’s what separates us from the animals! Except the weasel.”

You shouldn’t try to “weasel” your way of things. Stick it through, and do the right thing. There’s a difference between knowing when to pull out of, say, a deal, and weaseling your way out of, say, explaining to your boss why your register is short.

7. “Lisa, if you don’t like your job, you don’t go on strike. You just go in every day and do it really half-assed. That’s the American way.”

Not the best way of getting a recommendation. Strikes aren’t always going to be effective, but they can definitely get your voice heard and may even provide balance between the workers and the company.

8. “Oh, people can come up with statistics to prove anything, Kent. 14% of people know that.”

Yes, there are a lot of statistics out there. But you can’t just go popping them from thin air. Statistics are statistics because there is research behind them to back it up. So before you go attributing statistics to your business, make sure you have means to prove it.

9. “All my life I’ve had one dream, to achieve my many goals.”

We advise you to focus on one dream at a time, especially during the startup stage. Until you’ve got enough money to hire a bunch of other people to build an idea for you, your attention should be on just one of your goals.

10. “Don’t struggle! You’ll only sink faster.”

Sometimes you need to struggle to get where you want to be. Struggling builds character and shows just how much you want your business to succeed. There are countless startup founders out there, quitting their jobs and devoting all of their time to building their product or service. Struggling is just a part of the process.

11. “I think Smithers picked me because of my motivational skills. Everyone says they have to work a lot harder when I’m around.”

If others have to work harder when you’re around, it’s probably because they’re picking up your end of the work. The more people there are in a company, the easier it should be on everyone. If that’s not the case, you should probably take another look at your hiring process.

12. “Can I have some money now?”

If only it were that easy. In this scene, Homer starts up an internet company, and before he can even help his customer, he wants money. Before you go venturing into an industry because you think it will yield a profit, you have to be well-versed in the business. People aren’t just going to hand you money.

13. “Bart, you’re saying butt-kisser like it’s a bad thing!”

Being a butt-kisser may or may not help you with your boss, but it definitely won’t help you with your employees.

14. “I can’t believe it! Reading and writing actually paid off!”

Of course it did. This is a given. Even Einstein read and wrote.

15. “Mr. Scorpio says productivity is up 2%, and it’s all because of my motivational techniques, like donuts and the possibility of more donuts to come.”

While most employees probably would love to have donuts, it’s not a primary motivational technique. It makes you happy while you eat (and for some, maybe regretful after), but then, that moment is over. If you’re trying to inspire or motivate your team, approach it a different way. There are plenty of books on the subject.

16. “Now go on, boy, and pay attention. Because if you do, someday, you may achieve something that we Simpsons have dreamed about for generations: You may outsmart someone!”

Paying attention means not only paying attention in school, but paying attention to the failures and successes of other businesses. Learn from them. Emulate the positive things, and avoid strategies that didn’t work.

17. “Trying is the first step towards failure.”

It’s actually the first step towards success.

18. “Hello, Jerry? Homer Simpson. Remember last month when I paid back that loan? Well now I need YOU to do a favor for ME.”

Once you pay back a loan, that’s it. No one owes you anything. And if you wan’t something, you have to give something. This is a give-and-take world.

19. “This year I invested in pumpkins. They’ve been going up the whole month of October and I got a feeling they’re going to peak right around January. Then bang! That’s when I’ll cash in.”

If only one million other people weren’t thinking similarly. Keep in mind that if you’re getting into a seasonal business, you’ll be competing with a lot of other people who have the same idea. Therefore, you have to be unique and offer something a little different.

20. “Kids, you tried your best, and you failed miserably. The lesson is: never try.”

If you never try, you’ll never know whether or not you’ll succeed. If Homer Simpson were the father of Bill Gates or Steve Jobs, we’d be living completely differently.

21. “The code of the schoolyard, Marge! The rules that teach a boy to be a man. Let’s see. Don’t tattle. Always make fun of those different from you. Never say anything, unless you’re sure everyone feels exactly the same way you do.”

Speaking up about something when other people aren’t is a courageous feat. Homer’s code of the schoolyard might work in the playground, but eventually, you’re going to have to learn the right way. And since how you think as an adult is shaped by your experience as a child, you probably shouldn’t give your kid this advice.

22. “No matter how good you are at something, there’s always about a million people better than you.”

Maybe, maybe not. If you’re good at something, and you enjoy doing it — just do it. Don’t let the number of people who are potentially better than you affect your decision.

23. “Stupid risks make life worth living.”

Taking a strategic risk is one thing, but a stupid risk is another. They don’t make life worth living; they make life harder. And when you take a stupid risk, you’ll probably be met with failure, and then left to clean up the mess.

24. “Well, I’m not one for taking new jobs on a whim. But as we say in the snow plow business, I’m your astronaut.”

It’s okay to take chances, or to even take a job on a whim, so long as you know what your doing. If you’re an astronaut, you probably shouldn’t take a job in the snow plow business on a whim. Even new jobs should be suited to fit your skills.

25. “Books are useless! I only ever read one book, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” and it gave me absolutely no insight on how to kill mockingbirds! Sure it taught me not to judge a man by the color of his skin… but what good does that do me?”

If you can’t pull the greater message out of a book, you’ll probably be unable to pull the bigger lessons from your business. Not everything will be black and white, so it’s important to understand the underlying meaning.

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