Be inspired by these insights from some of the retail industry greats, including Harry Selfridge, Amazon’s founder, Laura Ashley and more.

Harry Gordon Selfridge

“People will sit up and take notice of you if you will sit up and take notice of what makes them sit up and take notice.”  

Harry Gordon Selfridge, founder, Selfridges


Jeff Bezos founded Amazon

“All businesses need to be young forever. If your customer base ages with you, you’re Woolworths.”

Jeff Bezos, founder, Amazon


Walmart founder Sam Walton

“Ignore the conventional wisdom. If everybody else is doing it one way, there’s a good chance you can find your niche by going in exactly the opposite direction.”

Sam Walton, founder, Walmart


Entrepreneur Anita Roddick founded The Body Shop

“If you think morality is a luxury business can’t afford, try living in a world without it.”

Anita Roddick, founder, The Body Shop


“The best way of running a business is to leave your door wide open and anybody can come in at any time. It was years and years before there was any resistance to just barging in my office.”

Lord Kalms, architect of Dixons


Entrepreneur Laura Ashley

“Really, I’m trying to keep things simple.”

Laura Ashley, founder, Laura Ashley


Tesco founder Jack Cohen started his career selling army surplus fish paste from a barrow in London's East End

“Salesmanship, showmanship, call it what you will. Every week there must be something special, something new.”

Jack Cohen, founder, Tesco


Archie Norman, saviour of Asda and now chairman of ITV

“The days of hierarchy and sitting in the boardroom barking at people are gone. What’s changing now is that the chief executive has got to be a great communicator.”

Archie Norman, saviour of Asda


Sir Charles Dunstone, founder of Carphone Warehouse

“Ego is a very dangerous thing in business.”

Sir Charles Dunstone, founder, Carphone Warehouse

  • What’s your favourite retail quote? Let us know using the comment box below.