52 Best Jocko Willink Quotes on Leadership and Success
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52 Best Jocko Willink Quotes on Leadership and Success

By Angelo Sorbello | Quotes

jocko willink quotes on leadership

I undervalued the power of Jocko Willink teaching until one of my mentors, a 6-figures business owner, told me that Extreme Ownership it’s one of the books he always brings with him.

That’s when I started to dive deep more onto Willink’s work, and I got mind-blown.

Jocko Willink is a former US Navy SEAL, who received the Silver Star and Bronze Star for his actions in the Iraq War. He’s now known for his best-selling books and podcast.

Thanks to his insightful and brilliant ideas coming from real life experience in the field, Jocko Willink quickly became one of the most sought of experts in leadership in the world.

Here are the best Jocko Willink quotes on leadership, discipline, and success.

52 Best Jocko Willink Quotes on Leadership and Success

  • “There is only hard work, late nights, early mornings, practice, rehearsal, repetition, study, sweat, blood, toil, frustration, and discipline.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Good leaders don’t make excuses. Instead, they figure out a way to get things done.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Discipline Equals Freedom” – Jocko Willink
  • “Don’t just think. Don’t just talk. Don’t just dream. None of that matters. The only thing that matters is that you actually do. So: DO.” – Jocko Willink
  • You have to do the work. You have to hold the line. You have to make it happen.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Get creative. Get aggressive. Get it done. When you are on the road, STAY ON THE PATH.” – Jocko Willink
  • Fear is normal. Every person feels fear at some point. Step aggressively towards your fear – that is the step into bravery.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Don’t expect to be motivated every day to get out there and make things happen. You won’t be. Don’t count on motivation. Count on Discipline.” – Jocko Willink
  • A leader must lead, but also be ready to follow. They must be aggressive, but not overbearing. A leader must be calm, but not robotic. They must be confident, but never cocky. A leader must be brave, but not foolhardy. They must have a competitive spirit, but be a gracious loser.” – Jocko Willink
  • ”Most of us aren’t defeated in one decisive battle. We are defeated one tiny, seemingly insignificant surrender at a time that chips away at who we should really be.” – Jocko Willink
jocko willink quotes
  • “Everyone wants some magic pill—some life hack—that eliminates the need to do the work. But that does not exist.” – Jocko Willink
  • “A leader must be attentive to details, but not obsessed with them. They must be strong but have endurance. A leader must be humble, but not passive. They must be close to subordinates, but not too close. A leader must exercise ‘extreme ownership’, but employ ‘decentralized command’. They must have nothing to prove, but everything to prove.” – Jocko Willink
  • “But my glory, it doesn’t happen in front of a crowd. It doesn’t happen in a stadium or on a stage. There are no medals handed out. It happens in the darkness of the early morning. In solitude. Where I try. And I try. And I try again. With everything I have, to be the best that I can possibly be.” – Jocko Willink
  • “In chaotic, dynamic, and rapidly changing environments, leaders at all levels must be empowered to make decisions. Decentralized Command is a key component to victory.” – Jocko Willink
  • “The Darkness cannot extinguish your light. Your WILL. Your determination. No matter what is happening—no matter how hard the fight is. As long as you keep fighting—you win.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Get up. Dust off. Reload. Re-calibrate. Re-engage – And go out on the attack. ” – Jocko Willink
  • “Overconfidence was risky in such a hostile environment, a mistake most often made by warriors who had never truly been tested.” – Jocko Willink
  • When you think you can’t take any more… Guess what? You can – It’s PROVEN by the stories of ORDINARY PEOPLE in war.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Human beings are generally not capable of managing more than six to ten people, particularly when things go sideways and inevitable contingencies arise.” – Jocko Willink
  • “It is essential to develop a standardized planning process.” – Jocko Willink
  • “When setting expectations, no matter what has been said or written, if substandard performance is accepted and no one is held accountable — if there are no consequences — that poor performance becomes the new standard. Therefore, leaders must enforce standards.” – Jocko Willink
jocko willink quotes on leadership
  • “The SEAL Teams and the U.S. military, much like militaries throughout history, are based around building blocks of four-to-six man teams with a leader.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Some of the boldest, most successful plans in history have not come from the senior ranks but from frontline leaders. Senior leaders simply had the courage to accept and run with them.” – Jocko Willink
  • “How do you become better? There is only one way – The way of discipline.” – Jocko Willink
  • “When setting expectations, no matter what has been said or written, if substandard performance is accepted and no one is held accountable — if there are no consequences — that poor performance becomes the new standard. Therefore, leaders must enforce standards.” – Jocko Willink
  • “I had to take complete ownership of what went wrong. That is what a leader does — even if it means getting fired. If anyone was to be blamed and fired for what happened, let it be me.” – Jocko Willink
  • “There can be no leadership when there is no team.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Curse the warmth of your bed instead of 48 reasons why you need to motivate yourself to get up in the morning. Glory in solitude instead of 10 ways you can stay on task and focus.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Get After It.” – Jocko Willink
  • The only person you can control is you. So focus on making yourself who you want to be: Faster. Smarter. Stronger. More humble. Less ego.” – Jocko Willink
  • “There can be no leadership when there is no team.” – Jocko Willink
  • “People who are successful decide they are going to be successful.  They make that choice. They decide to study hard. They decide to work hard. They decide to be the first person to get to work and the last to go home.” – Jocko Willink
  • “When your feelings are screaming that you have had enough when you think you are going to break emotionally, override that emotion with concrete logic and willpower that says one thing: I don’t stop.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Extreme Ownership is a mindset, an attitude.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Leadership requires belief in the mission and unyielding perseverance to achieve victory.” – Jocko Willink
jocko willink quotes
  • “Leading people is the most challenging and, therefore, the most gratifying undertaking of all human endeavors.” – Jocko Willink
  • “If frontline troops are unclear about the plan and yet are too intimidated to ask questions, the team’s ability to effectively execute the plan radically decreases.” – Jocko Willink
  • “There are no bad teams, only bad leaders.” – Jocko Willink
  • “The goal of all leaders should be to work themselves out of a job. When mentored and coached properly, the junior leader can eventually replace the senior leader, allowing the senior leader to move on to the next level of leadership.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Leading people is the most challenging and, therefore, the most gratifying undertaking of all human endeavors.” – Jocko Willink
  • “To implement real change, to drive people to accomplish something truly complex or difficult or dangerous — you can’t make people do these things. You have to lead them.” – Jocko Willink
  • “When personal agendas become more important than the team and the overarching mission’s success, performance suffers and failure ensues.” – Jocko Willink
  • “The leader is truly and ultimately responsible for everything.” – Jocko Willink
jocko willink quotes
  • “Once the wheels were in motion and the full resources of the team were engaged in that highest priority effort, I could then determine the next priority, focus the team’s efforts there, and then move on to the next priority.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Extreme ownership. Leaders must own everything in their world.  There is no one else to blame.” – Jocko Willink
  • “There is no such thing as a weekend.  This is an everyday gig: Every day is a Monday.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Hesitation is the enemy. It allows the moment to pass, the opportunity to be lost, the enemy to get the upper hand.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Set your alarm clock and get out of bed when it goes off.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Ego clouds and disrupts everything.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Those weights in the gym – they aren’t going to move themselves. You have to do it.” – Jocko Willink
  • “If you allow the status quo to persist, you can’t expect to improve performance, and you can’t expect to win.” – Jocko Willink
  • “Go down swinging. And I’ll tell you: If you fight with all you have, more often than not, you won’t go down at all. You will win.” – Jocko Willink

What are your favorite Jocko Willink Quotes? Comment below

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About the Author

Angelo Sorbello is an Entrepreneur and Growth Marketer. He started his first online business at 13 years old, and without any considerable marketing budget, he later sold it after having signed partnerships and contracts with companies such as Microsoft, DigitalBros, and 888. He now focuses on helping his other companies and budding entrepreneurs and marketers to grow their business and get results.

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