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We had a series of bizarre misunderstandings at work recently. It turned out there was an employee who felt they got so much email that it was only worth reading the first phrase, or even just the subject. We would send out emails like "The qualification was a success, aside from the.....blah blah", or "Everything is working, but we need x or y to proceed".

He was only catching the first phrase and assuming everything was fine. Then later he's fire off emails wondering why we had not proceeded to the next step, or why was project x behind schedule. He would copy all of management and even though we were waiting on his team to get something done, we would come off looking like slackers.

When we discovered what was happening, we started rephrasing our subjects and first sentences so if he only read the first parts, he got the relevant information. We started getting alot more cooperation from him, and had to do far less damage control.

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