Entrepreneurship, Leadership and Life by Sam Huleatt

Reflecting on a Life Lesson: Changing People

I recently listened to a friend give a post-mortem on ending a business relationship he’d worked on developing for quite some time.

As we were talking, we got into observing some life lessons and out of nowhere I realized that one particular lesson has continued to hold disproportionate weight in my life — that people don’t change. Or put a different way: you can’t change people.

Now of course it’s possible that people can change: perhaps slightly, or in a way that becomes suitable or compromise-able, but my personal experience always seems to be that such a relationship is unsustainable in the long run. In particular this is difficult for me because I tend to be extremely loyal and put a ton of effort into relationships of all sorts — I like to make things work.

That said, whenever I have compromised my own beliefs, or convinced myself that just ‘giving someone time’ would result in the change I was looking for, I’ve been wrong.

So what’s my takeaway? I don’t know; I guess I need to trust my gut more often and be willing to make hard calls earlier, whether in hiring, dating or friendship.


  • Lysee11

    So, have you changed? More or less: empathetic, forgiving, focused, content, centered, etc., than you were 10 years ago? Maybe some people can change. It often takes a climb over a wall of ego, hurt pride, self-realization….

  • Boaz Vardi

    hI Sam
    i egree with you that you can’t change peaple and that trying just makes you misarble