Considering that my office window looks out into a parking lot and then a brick retaining wall, the view is almost a dead end. I feel that many times the professional employee is at a dead end with communication skills. I truly believe that we have become so dependent on technology that we have forgotten how to communicate face-to-face with customers and fellow employees. I am working with many clients who need to pay attention to their non-verbal communication. A pleasant facial expression goes a long way towards establishing rapport with others. Who wants to do business or work with someone who is sour, sullen and snappy? Additionally, I am finding that many IT or MIS professionals need help making small talk. Just interacting with little pleasantries and general conversation. seems a difficult task for some. I see it with my own children. The art of sitting around and shooting the breeze over a meal is almost a lost art. This is a time when we connect to others. We learn little details about our conversational partners that may help us meet their needs as customers or co-workers. I think that the more we focus on engaging others in conversation whether it is over lunch, a quick cup of coffee or the golf course the more likely we are to build bridges with our colleagues and customers as opposed to creating dead-end barriers!