Story - XLerant

Getting the story behind the numbers

When I worked at Pepsi as a FP&A Manager it was drilled into our heads that our job was to “get the story behind the numbers” and be able to communicate that story intelligently. But what does getting the story behind the numbers really mean? The report that almost every finance organization runs each month…    Read More

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Broken Processes - XLerant

If not me, who? If not now, when?

There are reasons why we stay stuck with a bad process. There are other priorities. Resources are scarce. There’s no time. The dog ate my homework. When you interview CFOs that have successfully risen through the ranks… who competed with others for coveted promotions and won… you find they have three things in common. First,…    Read More

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Computer Data - XLerant

The Malcolm Baldrige Award Criteria and Better Software Purchasing

You’ve been through the drill before. Some process in your organization needs fixing and a team is formed to address it. Before you know it, you’re looking at software as a solution. That’s not a bad thing, but the way we go about it often is. The team comes up with a requirements grid (often…    Read More

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Teamwork and Community - XLerant

How to your involve your user community

The question of how to involve your user community in solution development is an important one; because the ultimate success or failure of any new system is wholly dependent upon whether or not it’s actually embraced by the user community… or rejected. There’s a lot of shelfware out there, and getting your users involved in…    Read More

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Unique Challenges - XLerant

Unique Challenges of Budgeting in Not for Profit

Budgets matter in the not-for-profit world to a degree I rarely see in the for-profit world. In the for-profit world, the budget is just a snapshot in time. It can be forgotten about the first time the company produces a reforecast (which, incidentally, can be forgotten with the second reforecast). It’s not that for-profit organizations…    Read More

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Ambiguous Problems - XLerant

Solving Ambiguous Problems – What Successful Companies Get That the Rest of Us Don’t

I’ve had the distinct pleasure of working with some of the best run companies over the years and I’ve come to appreciate what really separates them from “the merely good”. Some of what makes great companies so successful, like hiring great talent, is quite obvious. But in this blog I’d like to share one of…    Read More

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Lock and Key - XLerant

Why locking down spreadsheet templates doesn’t work

We have discussed in this blog a big concept – Explicit Budgets for projects or initiatives. But not every department really needs that degree of sophistication. Sometimes it’s the small things that can improve communication. Like allowing managers to easily add justifications and detail. For example, we have a client that has an Administrative Services…    Read More

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