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on 27 September 2009
This is, to my mind, a great book, it talks about 'what the top 2% know that everyone else does not' and it certainly identifies communication as a key area that top project managers excel at. I particularly support the section on communication.

The book, based on a survey of 5,000 project managers, states in its findings:

'Good communication is comprised of more than how the message is delivered. The information itself, the method used, and the timing with which it is delivered all contributes to effective communication.'

Communication on a project is a two way process. You are communicating out and you are receiving communication back at you and the usual complexities of filters and noise typically confuse the process of giving and receiving clear, accurate and understandable information.

Communication is also sequential, communicated through chains of people, which will add that 'Chinese whispers' effect - either intentional or accidental.

Add to that the sheer volume of communication these days, email, phone calls (landline and mobile), written, presented, verbal and so on, then life can be very tough for project managers to learn what they need to learn and to share what they need to share.

I was taught a truth in my early project management days - reporting is not communicating! The fact that the critical facts and important truths are buried somewhere in a report that the right people may be in possession of does not, in any way, mean that they have received the message.

A recommended read to all project managers - learn to be better!

Peter Taylor
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The lazy project manager: How to be twice as productive and still leave the office early
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