The new hire had several indisputable qualifications: he had relevant experience; knew the sector; and spoke several Euro-languages really well, in an easygoing way that meant most people liked him at first meeting.
What could go wrong? Well, all the usual little things, like they always do. But I was impressed from the start at how, when the anguished or angry call came in from a client, he would immediately jump on a plane and get out on site to put things right in person.
That is, I was impressed at the start. But it soon become apparent that these dashes to client's door were not genuinely productive. Whatever good he was achieving by sheer personal responsiveness - in the striking but rather limited sense of physically turning up within hours - he was not actually problem-solving when he got there. Somehow he expected the magic of a prompt but fleeting personal appearance to be enough. I subsequently heard this pattern of fruitless behaviour labelled 'airport fever'.
Which brings us to our very own Theresa May. Over the 30 months of her PM-ship there have been many squalls in the brexit process and the first thing you know, she's blitzing half a dozen Euro-capitals in person. Protocol being what it is, the respective political leaders always give her a cup of coffee and a brief photo-opportunity ... well, it's only polite.
But it's pretty obvious these dynamic and quite striking personal interventions achieve two tenths of bugger-all and, since it is to be imagined the Air Miles are not the attraction, we are obliged to diagnose a bad case of Airport Fever.
I had to let the sales guy go, of course. It's not just airport fever. It's terminal. If you see what I mean.