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Entrepreneurs / Inspirational Quotes

12 Inspiring Quotes From the Inventor of the Telephone, Alexander Graham Bell

March 10 marks the day the inventor made the first telephone call.
12 Inspiring Quotes From the Inventor of the Telephone, Alexander Graham Bell
Image credit: Science Source | Getty Images
Alexander Graham Bell
3 min read
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Here’s a quick history lesson: On March 10, 1876, inventor Alexander Graham Bell -- the man behind the telephone -- successfully made the first phone call in history. The call was to his assistant, Thomas Watson, who was sitting in the next room. Bell famously said through the phone, “Mr. Watson, come here, I want to see you.”

Related: 10 Resources for Today's Inventors

Sure, the first words ever spoken through the phone may not have been the most exciting, but Bell’s invention changed the world. And it turns out, Bell had many other things to share during his lifetime. On top of his breakthrough invention, there are a number of things entrepreneurs and inventors can learn from him.

To celebrate the day Bell’s invention proved to be a success, check out these 12 quotes attributed to him that will inspire you to change the world.

On success

“Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.”

On focus

“Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work at hand. The sun’s rays do not burn until brought to focus.”

On opportunity

“When one door closes, another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.”

On development

“A man, as a general rule, owes very little to what he is born with -- a man is what he makes of himself.”

On collaboration

“Great discoveries and improvements invariably involve the cooperation of many minds.”

Related: How to Find Your Profitable Idea

On growth

“The most successful men in the end are those whose success is the result of steady accretion.”

On ideas

“You cannot force ideas. Successful ideas are the result of slow growth.”

On goals

“The achievement of one goal should be the starting point of another.”

On failure

“The only difference between success and failure is the ability to take action.”

On risk

“Leave the beaten track behind occasionally and dive into the woods. Every time you do you will be certain to find something you have never seen before.”

Related: The 10 Must-Have Ingredients for a Successful Invention

On entrepreneurship

“The inventor … looks upon the world and is not contented with things as they are. He wants to improve whatever he sees, he wants to benefit the world; he is haunted by an idea. The spirit of invention possesses him, seeking materialization.”

On the future

“The day will come when the man at the telephone will be able to see the distant person to whom he is speaking.”

9 Quotes on Entrepreneurship and Starting a Business from Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian