My top 10 highlights from the book:
1. Henry Royce had known poverty and hardship all his life. The only university he had graduated from was the one of hard knocks.
2. Henry Royce ruled the lives of the people around him, claimed their body and soul, even when they were asleep.
3. Many times our position was so precarious that it seemed hopeless to continue.
4. They worked in monastic seclusion in an office situated in the middle of the village. To ensure a minimum of distraction the office was forbidden the luxury of a telephone.
5. There was nothing revolutionary about Royce’s car. He had taken the best of current automobile design and improved on every aspect of it.
6. This ability to observe, think about, and then improve on existing machines (products) was to be a consistent theme throughout Royce’s life.
7. He paid great attention to the smallest detail and the result of his personal consideration to every little thing resulted in the whole assembly being of a very high standard of perfection. It is rather to Sir Henry’s thoroughness and attention to even the smallest detail than to any revolutionary invention that his products have the superlative qualities that we all know so well.
8. This first car, like its successors, was not revolutionary in any single part but in the excellence of the whole.
9. The other vital early decision made by the new company was to concentrate on one model.
10. Whatever is rightly done, however humble, is noble.