Free Competitor Price Comparison Report provides price comparison and price change monitoring and reports. Get a free sample report comparing your prices with those of your competitor. Learn more!

The further we go in the CRM adventure, the less our efforts seem to be about technology. That’s because we’re reaching a theoretical limit, or asymptote, on what technology can do in the vendor-customer relationship.

Think of an asymptote as the ceiling that a graph never reaches as it curls over to the horizontal. Increasingly, we’re encountering situations where the best technology can do is assist humans as they deal with complex issues and other people pursuing products and services. This is not to say that technology doesn’t do a very good job handling the simple stuff.

All this was brought home to me recently in some Harvard Business Review articles and in my own explorations in Chicago, where I got indoctrinated in the ways of the comedy troupe Second City. First Harvard.

Emotional Intelligence in a Machine Age

It is interesting that even in situations where machines are talking to machines, there’s more to be learned. In “Success with the Internet of Things Requires More Than Chasing the Cool Factor,” Maciej Kranz, VP of the Corporate Strategy and Innovation Group at Cisco, explores some people issues. Kranz is also the author of Building the Internet of Things.

In a nutshell, Kranz’s advice is this: “First, train your employees in critical IoT skills — not just technology and processes but collaboration, too. Second, implement a culture of innovation across all grades, functions, and regions.” Look at all of the people skills needed even in the age of machines talking to machines.

Then there’s “The Personality Traits of Good Negotiators” by Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, CEO of Hogan Assessment Systems, professor of business psychology at University College London, and faculty member at Columbia University.

Chamorro-Premuzic’s research is top-notch, and he’s a frequent contributor to HBR, writing about emotional intelligence, or…