Cape Town - E-mail threads can be very problematic in the corporate world, especially if someone in the chain forwards an internal e-mail to an outsider, without taking the trouble to remove the thread of accompanying inhouse “chat”.

I’ve been guilty of it a couple of times, mortifyingly so, which prompted periods of obsessive pre-send e-mail checking.

Every now and then corporate e-mail housekeeping lapses provide me with unintended insight into what companies think of me.

Last week I sent an e-mail to a major financial services company, querying the alleged non-payment of money due to a client.

The e-mail was forwarded from my contact to the company’s “risk officer” who forwarded it to two other colleagues, after adding: “You may have the pleasure of dealing with this media query. Wendy Knowler is BIG problem.”

Unfortunately for her, one of those colleagues responded to me, having neglected to remove her e-mail below the new one.

Oops. There followed a BIG silence. - Cape Times