Reputation Quotes | Citations on Both Character and Reputation

Wise Words on Reputation


Wisdom is everywhere, especially when it comes to how to build your reputation. Whether it’s in your personal life or in business, you can’t go wrong with these words of advice from the wise, famous, and experienced throughout history. Here are 25 quotes on reputation to inspire you as you build and grow your own in a positive direction.


“Be more concerned with character than reputation. Character is what you are, reputation is what people think you are.” 
– John Wooden


From the record-setting late UCLA basketball coach, this is one of the most often repeated quotes about character and reputation, and it is as true for business as it is your personal life. While reputation is how the public sees you, it can go hand in hand with character. Your reputation comes from the authenticity of character in your life, business, and brand. Be of good character and it will shine through in your reputation.


“Reputation is like fine china: Once broken it’s very hard to repair.”
– Abraham Lincoln


People will forgive you if they see that you made a mistake and own up to it, but it can take a long time for them to forget, if ever. It’s better to zealously guard a reputation and work to keep it as positive as possible. But if it does falter, it is vital to fix your reputation as soon as possible.



“Work is the price which is paid for reputation.”

– Baltasar Gracian

Keeping a reputation positive, especially in business, requires a watchful eye. You need to make sure you stay on top of how people see you by interacting with your stakeholders and being keenly aware of how you are viewed by the public. Give it focus and your hard work will pay off.




“The greater the difficulty the more glory in surmounting it. Skillful pilots gain their reputation from storms and tempests.”

– Epictetus


When you face difficulties in your business, stay the course and push on. Your reputation will grow and the public will see your business for the strong entity it is and respond accordingly.



“All you have in business is your reputation – so it’s very important that you keep your word.”

– Richard Branson


Make sure that you not only have a positive reputation with the public but follow it up with actions and facts that support the public view. If you say something, make sure you mean it and keep your word.



“You can’t buy a good reputation; you must earn it.”

– Harvey Mackay


There are no shortcuts to a good reputation. It takes hard work and authentic action.



“Your personal brand is a promise to your clients… a promise of quality, consistency, competency, and reliability.”

– Jason Hartman


Your brand and reputation are uniquely yours. No other company can exactly replicate the relationship you have with your stakeholders. The best way to connect and foster a positive reputation is to be authentic and then back it up with action.


Arnold Bennett quote reputation


“It is difficult to make a reputation, but is even more difficult seriously to mar a reputation once properly made – so faithful is the public.”

– Arnold Bennett


If stakeholders know that you have a history of doing the right things and the reputation you have developed comes from an authentic place, the public will often be more forgiving if your company makes a misstep. This is why it is vital to foster a positive reputation.



“It is better to be alone than in bad company.”

– George Washington


Be careful who you associate with, whether it is personal or business. The public will measure you by who you work with, even in the corporate world.


Socrates quote reputation

Regard your good name as the richest jewel you can possibly be possessed of.”

– Socrates


The reputation of your business is one of your most important assets . Guard it carefully and work diligently to grow it in a positive direction.



“A reputation once broken may possibly be repaired, but the world will always keep their eyes on the spot where the crack was.”

– Joseph Hall


Reputations can be recovered, but it takes time and effort (and sometimes a bit of help). It may be a while before the public forgets what happened, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t fix it. In fact, it’s vital that you do and do so quickly.




“You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do.”
– Henry Ford


Talk is cheap and actions speak louder than words. The public wants to see that you are doing things, not just paying lip service. Often they see right through inauthenticity and assume you are doing it just in order to lure them in, which will make them turn the other way and possibly to your competitors.


“Character is much easier kept than recovered.” 
– Thomas Paine


Building your reputation and being true to it is not only easier but more effective than trying to rebuild it after a crisis. Carefully monitoring your image and fixing problems before they get out of control will allow you to avoid major problems in the future.



“If I take care of my character, my reputation will take care of itself.” 
– D.L. Moody


If your motives are true and authentic, your reputation will follow. Don’t try to fake it either. The public can be very savvy



“Begin somewhere. You cannot build a reputation on what you intend to do.” 
– Liz Smith


Take action and don’t just say you are going to do something. The world is full of people with ideas, so be a person or company who takes action and your reputation will reflect that.



“Whether true or false, what is said about men often has as much influence on their lives, and particularly on their destinies, as what they do.” 
– Victor Hugo


People talk and that’s part of how reputations are made. It’s how you are viewed in the public space, whether true or not, that shapes your reputation. So it’s very important to monitor how you are seen by people and the public’s opinion of you.



“There is no advertisement as powerful as a positive reputation traveling fast.”

– Brian Koslow


Word spreads and you want it to be positive. People will not only be drawn to your business’s good reputation but will tell others and your business will grow.



“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”

– Warren Buffett


Remember that you have put all of your blood, sweat, and tears into not only your business but your reputation and how people see your brand. It can all come crashing down very quickly, so guard your reputation closely and approach your public image carefully.



“Whoever renders service to many puts himself in line for greatness – great wealth, great return, great satisfaction, great reputation, and great joy.”

– Jim Rohn


Giving back is an important part of business. You are not only helping others, but it will add to your reputation and stakeholders will respond to your actions.

wrquotesq“Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip.”

– Will Rogers

Although a humorous take on reputation, the quote is no less true. Make sure that your actions are authentic and if someone on the outside sees how things work in your company or your motivations, that there are no secrets.


“A reputation is what you hear when no one is there to speak for it.” 
– Jeffrey Fry

Your reputation says everything about your business or brand. You can’t always be there to tell everyone about how you conduct business, so it is vital that what the public sees, hears and believes about you and your company is positive.



“The most important thing for a young man is to establish a credit… a reputation, character.”
– John D. Rockefeller

It’s never too early to start developing a positive reputation. It costs nothing and is beyond measurable value.


“A critical ingredient which binds customers to a brand is trust.”
– Bernard Kelvin Clive

A good reputation and customer trust go hand in hand. It is vital that they believe in your company or they will not only take their business elsewhere, they may suggest others do so as well.



“A reputation for good judgment, for fair dealing, for truth, and for rectitude, is itself a fortune.”
– Henry Ward Beecher


Your reputation is one of the most valuable things you have. It speaks volumes about how you treat people and approach business and the public will notice. Make sure honesty and fairness is a large part of it.



“A reputation for a thousand years may depend upon the conduct of a single moment.”

– Ernest Bramah


Even the most carefully cared for reputation can come crashing down in an instant. It’s important to be vigilant and carefully monitor how the public and stakeholders see you. This includes not only your approach to customers but the way you treat your employees and keeping touch with social movements and how you relate to the public.

If you are inspired now and need some assistance with your company’s reputation, we’re ready to help!

Tags: Corporate Reputation, Personal Reputation.

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