Effectiveness is the capability of producing a desired result. When something is deemed effective, it means it has an intended or expected outcome, or produces a deep, vivid impression.
- Quotes are arranged alphabetically by author
A - F
- When a specific desired end is attained we shall say that the action is "effective." When the unsought consequences of the action are more important than the attainment of the desired end and are dissatisfactory, effective action, we shall say, is "inefficient." When the unsought consequences are unimportant or trivial, the action is "efficient.
- Effectiveness relates to the accomplishment of the cooperative purpose which is social and non-personal in character. Efficiency relates to the satisfaction of individual motives and is personal in character.
- Extreme states of being, whether individual or collective, were once purposefully motivated. Some of those purposes no longer have meaning (expiation, salvation). The well-being of communities in so longer sought through means of doubtful effectiveness, but directly, through action. Under these conditions, extreme states of being fell into the domain of the arts, and not without a certain disadvantage. Literature (fiction) took the place of what had formerly been the spiritual life; poetry (the disorder of words) that of real states of trance. Art constituted a small free domain, outside action: to gain freedom it had to renounce the real world. This is a heavy price to pay, and most writers dream of recovering a lost reality. They must then pay in another sense, by renouncing freedom.
- Georges Bataille (1997) The Bataille Reader, p. 340
- Their high expectations for effectiveness were made possible by low expectations of what was to be.
- Allan Bloom (1990) Giants and Dwarfs, Chapter “Commerce and Culture,” p. 285
- A business of high principle generates greater drive and effectiveness because people know that they can do the right thing decisively and with confidence.
- Marvin Bower (1966) The Will to Manage p. 25
- It is highly desirable that we have trained persons look at these varied possibilities to compare their effectiveness, and to point the way to sound engineering decisions.
- Harold Chestnut ( 1967) Systems Engineering Methods, p. vii
- It is fundamentally the confusion between effectiveness and efficiency that stands between doing the right things and doing things right. There is surely nothing quite so useless as doing with great efficiency what should not be done at all.
- Peter Drucker (1963) Managing for Business Effectiveness. p. 53–60.
- The executive is, first of all, expected to get the right things done. And this is simply saying that he is expected to be effective […] For manual work, we need only efficiency; that is, the ability to do things right rather than the ability to get the right things done. The manual worker can always be judged in terms of the quantity and quality of a definable and discrete output, such as a pair of shoes
- Peter Drucker (1967) The Effective Executive. Heinemann, London. p. 1
- Effectiveness is doing the things that get you closer to your goals. Efficiency is performing a given task (whether important or not) in the most economical manner possible. Being efficient without regard to effectiveness is the default mode of the universe.
- Theatrical effectiveness, I believe, lies in it's rarity its uniqueness
- Max Frisch Sketchbook 1946-1949
G - L
- * Three principles — the conformability of nature to herself, the applicability of the criterion of simplicity, and the "unreasonable effectiveness" of certain parts of mathematics in describing physical reality — are thus consequences of the underlying law of the elementary particles and their interactions.
- Murray Gell-Mann TED talk on beauty and truth in physics March 2007 (video timecode 14m28s)
- Cybernetics insists, also, on a further and rather special condition that distinguishes it from ordinary scientific theorizing: it demands a certain standard of effectiveness.
- Frank Honywill George (1962) The Brain As A Computer. p. 2
- It is also very difficult to understand the effectiveness of our actions without measurements.
- Steve Killelea (2007) Peace and Sustainability: Cornerstones to survival in the 21st century.
M - R
- The manager treats ends as given, as outside his scope; his concern is with technique, with effectiveness .
- Alasdair MacIntyre (1981) After Virtue
- The ultimate measurement is effectiveness, not efficiency.
- Jack J. J. Phillips (2012) Accountability in Human Resource Management. p. 175
- Optimum realization aims at a harmonious synthesis of effectiveness and justice in the furthest possible surveyable part of future time.
- Fred Polak (1971) Prognostics, p. 65-66
- The effectiveness to be aimed at calls for the application and refinement of all conceivable prognostic techniques for adding to knowledge of the future, including those which can be effectively developed over an ever-wider time scale.
- Fred Polak (1971) Prognostics, p. 65-66
- Truth is great and its effectiveness endures.
- Our words are built on the objects of our experience. They have acquired their effectiveness by adapting themselves to the occurrences of our everyday world.
- Hubert Reeves (1984) Atoms of silence: an exploration of cosmic evolution Massachusetts Institute of Technology. p. 37
- Besides each one of us working individually, all of us have got to work together. We cannot possibly do our best work as a nation unless all of us know how to act in combination as well as how to act each individually for himself. The acting in combination can take many forms, but of course its most effective form must be when it comes in the shape of law — that is, of action by the community as a whole through the lawmaking body.
- Theodore Roosevelt (1900) The Strenuous Life: Essays and Addresses
- Corporations are necessary to the effective use of the forces of production and commerce under modern conditions. We cannot effectively prohibit all combinations without doing far-reaching economic harm; and it is mere folly to do as we have done in the past—to try to combine incompatible systems—that is, to try both to prohibit and regulate combinations. Combinations in industry are the result of an imperative economic law which cannot be repealed by political legislation. The effort at prohibiting all combination has substantially failed. The only course left is active corporate regulation – that is, the control of corporations for the common good—the suppression of the evils that they work, and the retention, as far as maybe, of that business efficiency in their use which has placed us in the forefront of industrial peoples.
- Theodore Roosevelt (1910) The Progressives, Past and Present
S - Z
- The effectiveness of the performance will depend on the effectiveness of the play and the effectiveness with which it is played. The effectiveness of the administrative process will vary with the effectiveness of the organization and the effectiveness with which its members play their parts.
- Herbert Simon (1947) Administrative Behavior, p. 252
- Previous war-presidents have gathered opponents into their cabinets, reached out to estranged former allies, engaged in aggressive diplomacy to maximize effectiveness and rallied the whole country for the fight.
- In the past, it was easier to believe in my own effectiveness. If I worked hard, with good colleagues and good ideas, we could make a difference. But now, I sincerely doubt that.
- Margaret Wheatley (2005/2010) Finding Our Way: Leadership For an Uncertain Time. p. 327