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Achieving Project Management Success in the Federal Government by Timothy Jacques, Jonathan Weinstein

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Chapter 6  

The Crucial Role ofCommunication:Telling the Story

The speed of communications is wondrous to behold. It is also true that speed can multiply the distribution of information that we know to be untrue.

—EDWARD R. MORROW

On April 7, 1865, two days before the American Civil War ended, Abraham Lincoln sent a telegram to his commanding general, Ulysses S. Grant. The telegram read, “Gen. Sheridan says ‘If the thing is pressed I think that Lee will surrender.’ Let the thing be pressed.”1 This is a masterful example of concise communication. Lincoln—upper management—conveyed to his project manager, Grant, exactly what he wanted done. He also conveyed his reason, even though Grant likely knew that Lee and his formerly fearsome army had ...

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