After a couple of days trying to access my client’s e-mail system without success — and with so much on my plate I had no time to deal with their IT support group — I happened to mention the problem to one of my contacts. It turns out the company’s IT department had changed the way remote users (like me) access the system.

My colleague forwarded what appeared to be a broadcast e-mail message to company employees. As someone using remote access, did I get a direct message? I can’t recall seeing one. And I certainly didn’t get a two-step warning, with a few weeks’ advance notice and a reminder a couple of days before the plug was pulled.

So that’s the “takeaway.” If you’re making a change that affects people who use your system, buy your product, visit your store, please tell them. Tell them more than once. Don’t make them find out by chance.