30 Superb Ashlee Vance Quotes

Ashlee Vance is an American business columnist whom is best known for the authoring of his book, ‘Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future.’ Released just this year, Vance spent over 40 hours talking with Elon and interviewed more than 300 people for his book. Check out some of the best Ashlee Vance quotes shared below.

“And it may well be the case that this is exactly the type of person it takes to make a freaking space Internet real.”

“As his ex-wife, Justine, put it, “He does what he wants, and he is relentless about it. It’s Elon’s world, and the rest of us live in it.”

“Everyone knew that the person who starts a company is not necessarily the right person to lead it in the long term, but whenever that is the case, it’s not easy.”


“Good ideas are always crazy until they’re not.”

“He seems to feel for the human species as a whole without always wanting to consider the wants and needs of individuals.”

“He will pick the most aggressive time schedule imaginable assuming everything goes right, and then accelerate it by assuming that everyone can work harder.”

“He would place this urgency that he expected the revenue in ten years to be ten million dollars a day and that every day we were slower to achieve our goals was a day of missing out on that money.”

“He’s been known to obsess over typos in e-mails to the point that he could not see past the errors and read the actual content of the messages. Even in social settings, Musk might get up from the dinner table without a word of explanation to head outside and look at the stars, simply because he’s not willing to suffer fools or small talk.”

“I came to the conclusion that really we should aspire to increase the scope and scale of human consciousness in order to better understand what questions to ask.”

“I just look at it as ‘What grades do I need to get where I want to go?”

“I knew I could stay at Mazda for ten years and get very comfortable or take a huge leap of faith.”

“I really like computer games, but then if I made really great computer games, how much effect would that have on the world.”

“I’d rather play video games, write software, and read books than try and get an A if there’s no point in getting an A.”

“If the rules are such that you can’t make progress, then you have to fight the rules.”

“If you told him that you made a particular choice because ‘it was the standard way things had always been done,’ he’d kick you out of a meeting fast.”

“Musk’s vision, and, of late, execution seem to combine the best of Henry Ford and John D. Rockefeller.”

“One thing that Musk holds in the highest regard is resolve, and he respects people who continue on after being told no.”

“Really smart people sometimes don’t understand that not everyone can keep up with them or go as fast.”

“Surely Musk did not have the gall to try to revamp the very idea of the automobile and build an energy network at the same time with a budget equivalent to what Ford and ExxonMobil spend on their annual holiday parties.”

“That’s my lesson for taking a vacation: vacations will kill you.”

“The best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads.”

“The company would pick a plan of attack, and when it failed at something, it failed fast and then tried a new approach.”

“The key test for an acronym is to ask whether it helps or hurts communication.”

“The two men continue to despise each other today, although they must do so in private, as legally required.”

“There needs to be a reason for a grade. I’d rather play video games, write software, and read books than try and get an A if there’s no point in getting an A.”

“They were smart, needed to get things done, and didn’t always have time to wait for things like city permits.”

“To me, Elon is the shining example of how Silicon Valley might be able to reinvent itself and be more relevant than chasing these quick IPOs and focusing on getting incremental products out.”

“What’s fascinating is that Musk remains willing to lose it all.”

“When you have scarcity, it naturally reinforces greed and leads to more interest.”

“You’re twenty-four or twenty-five, and they’re trusting you with so much. It was very empowering.”

Ashlee Vance shares this inside look into the mind of Elon Musk. As the first person to run three companies worth more than a billion dollars, Musk shares some of his unique perspectives and outlooks on his life.

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