People are constants, problems are variables. Simon is not saying people never change, are always the same. You need only hang around most anyone for a while to know people are very changeable. Were that not true, things would get very boring and most of the world’s serious problems would never get solved.
The people you deal with through your success business have some characteristics that stay fairly stable over time. Traits not changing much include things like attitudes, approaches to doing business, interpersonal style, beliefs, values, general mood and demeanor, cooperativeness, and most everything else mattering in the context of your success. This is enough of a fact of life you are well-served by simply assuming people are constants, they are not going to change, at least not much in any ways making any difference for you.
Making this assumption puts you onto the right track with people and problems: you will,
• Deal with people and work on problems.
If the people change in positive ways, all the better; but you are not counting on it and are not investing much time in trying to get them to change. You want to see what people are doing right, since you likely can get them to do more of whatever it is; but you cannot concern yourself much with what they are doing wrong. You might get them to do less of it but not a lot less any time soon. Your goal is to encourage people to do more of what they are already doing right, with the hope they will have less time and energy for doing things wrong. If you are very successful with this approach, the right things will become so habitual the wrong things gradually just drop away, although it can take years, if you have the free time to devote to the task. …