Big companies act like big companies. We don’t take them seriously when they say they care, because there is no “they.” When they send a holiday card or an email, we don’t really think it was from a person we could connect with.

Individuals act like individuals. When they write us a note or show up in person, we know that we’re dealing with a human.

In between, though, problems arise.

Did your friend really write that tweet, or did the staff do it?

That email that you just got, BCC… when you hit reply, will it go to the person who purported to send it, or to a team, or the infinite void?

The voice in our head changes when the identity of the sender differs.

When individuals try to scale, they often think they can bring their care, personality and person-hood along for the ride. And inevitably, it ends up disappointing everyone. It’s possible you can trick us for a while, but if you succeed in persuading us that you’re a real person, we’ll feel tricked sooner or later.

If it’s not from you, say so.