What have the following got in common with e-business? Tactics at the Battle of Waterloo; aspects of Greek Orthodox Christian theology; and the relative merits of different port vintages? The answer is: nothing and everything.
With the e-world accelerating the rise of co-operation, and partnerships within and across industry sectors, it is vital not only to trust the people at the other end, but to have a rapport with them for a successful ongoing relationship in a highly dynamic environment.
The three seemingly disparate topics mentioned above were among the mind-set meeting points used by two corporate directors putting together a major upcoming cross-sectorale-business collaboratiion.
Of course, any salesperson worth their salt will stress the importance of building a strong rapport. However, in the hectic tempo of e-business life among a disparate mix of generations and backgrounds, it is all too easy to neglect this.
Golf has traditionally been the unifying leveller, but since the days when IBM ruled the corporate roost who - apart from chairmen and non-executive directors - has time for a round, let alone the 19th hole, any more?
So, paradoxically, in this increasingly virtual world, the real winners will be those who can step aside and exploit in new ways the really high bandwidth that only human interaction can provide.