The moving feastAlthough it is absolutely true that we do now have to get closer than ever before to colleagues, staff, stakeholders and customers, this does not have to be a life sentence.
Some years ago I worked with the Board of a fast growing £40 million pound company with two husband and wife couples as equal shareholders. I’d been working with them for some ten years as we all watched the business continue to grow rapidly.
One day I was on a training course myself and the presenter made such an impact on me that I telephoned my client at the morning coffee break, to say that I had just met their new business adviser. Mark told me I was mad, but I insisted that we set up a dinner at a hotel where the four directors would meet my successor.
The six of us subsequently had a couple of further strategy meetings, but that was the last practical involvement I had with that company. I still know the directors; in fact we all went out for a curry together just before Christmas.
So yes, in the business context, we do have to get closer to all sorts of people than ever before, but the relationship is always evolving in one way or another simply because time and circumstance are never the same.