8 Larry Ellison Quotes to Inspire Success and Innovation

Oracle's billionaire co-founder has a few things to teach you on being a business leader.

learn more about Rose Leadem

By Rose Leadem

Bloomberg | Getty Images

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Oracle's Larry Ellison's rag-to-riches story is one of inspiration and motivation. Before becoming an incredibly successful tech entrepreneur and one of the wealthiest people in the world, Ellison was raised by his aunt and uncle in Chicago, where he eventually went to college. After he dropped out, Ellison packed his bags and moved to Berkeley, Calif., where he worked various jobs and picked up important tech skills at companies including Wells Fargo and Amdahl Corporation.

Related: The Best 25 Motivational Quotes To Kick Start Every Morning

After Ellison landed a programming job at Ampex Corporation, Ellison and his team were asked to develop a database management system for the CIA under the codename "Oracle." Ellison and two of his colleagues eventually broke off from Ampex to launch Software Development Labs in 1977, which would soon become Oracle.

Fast forward 40 years, and Oracle is one of the most successful technology companies in the world. Ellison, its chairman and chief technology officer, is the seventh wealthiest person in the U.S. In addition to his success, Ellison is also a major philanthropist and investor, pledging to give a portion of his wealth to charity and helping to use his money to launch startups.

Related: 9 Motivational Quotes from Serena Williams

Here are eight Larry Ellison quotes to inspire success, leadership and innovation.


On motivation

"Great achievers are driven, not so much by the pursuit of success but by the fear of failure." -- Larry Ellison

On innovation

"When you innovate, you've got to be prepared for everyone telling you you're nuts." -- Larry Ellison

On mindset

"See things in the present, even if they are in the future." -- Larry Ellison

Related: 50 Inspirational Quotes to Motivate You


On money

"Wealth isn't the same thing as intelligence." -- Larry Ellison

On confidence

"Always have a vision. Be passionate. Act confident, even when you're not." -- Larry Ellison

On success

"You have to believe in what you do in order to get what you want." -- Larry Ellison

Related: 10 Barack Obama Quotes on Hard Work, Success, Motivation and More


On leadership

"To model yourself after Steve Jobs is like, 'I'd like to paint like Picasso, what should I do? Should I use more red?" -- Larry Ellison

On growth

"Life's a journey. It's a journey about discovering limits." -- Larry Ellison
Rose Leadem
Rose Leadem is a freelance writer for Entrepreneur.com. 

Related Topics

Editor's Pick

Have More Responsibilities at Work, But No Pay Bump? Use This Script to Get the Raise You Deserve.
Black and Asian Founders Face Opposition at All Levels — Here's Why That Has to Change

Invest in Yourself: 10 Things Every Working Woman Should Do This Year

When striving for success, it is easy to forget about your mental and physical health. But without health, you cannot fully succeed. Follow these ten lifestyle strategies for success in your personal and professional life.

Business News

This OnlyFans Star Was Once Part of a Fanatical MLM Cult. "I Was Forced Into Celibacy."

Cami Strella was lured into a multilevel marketing scheme but escaped to start her own six-figure-a-month business.


This Is the Overlooked Tool Your Business Needs to Reach Your Target Audience

Voice search is growing, and your business can utilize this important functionality to get more customers. Here's how.

Thought Leaders

5 Small Daily Habits Self-Made Millionaires Use to Grow Their Wealth

We've all seen what self-made millionaires look like on TV, but it's a lot more subtle than that. Brian Tracy researched what small daily habits these successful entrepreneurs adopted on their journey from rags to riches.

Business Ideas

How to Make Thousands of Dollars on the Side As a Virtual Assistant

Apply your skills and experience to create a lucrative virtual assistant side hustle or full-time business.