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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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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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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Evolution - XLerant

The Missing Link: Budgeting and Execution

There are two primary purposes of budgeting. The one most people think of first is to put a cap spending. But that’s only one reason why organizations (and people) budget. The other reason why organizations budget is to ensure what’s important gets done. And let’s face it, just because something is important doesn’t mean it…    Read More

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Raymond Panko - XLerant

Who is Raymond Panko… and why should you care?

Raymond Panko, a professor at the University of Hawaii, is the leading expert on spreadsheet errors. Who makes them, why they happen, what rate they’re seen in the average spreadsheet, you name it. He wrote a paper on the subject called What We Know About Spreadsheet Errors first published in the Journal of End User…    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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Teamwork and Community - XLerant

Should you involve your user community in solution development?

When I first moved to Ireland with Pepsi, I brought a lot of New York headquarters ways with me. Some good, some bad. But one of those ways was in how to develop solutions to vexing problems. The foundation of solution development was always the formation of a cross functional team to bring together multiple…    Read More

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Smartphone Map - XLerant

You can’t create an Interactive BudgetMap in Excel

Here’s a fundamental problem with the budget process we wanted to address. People don’t like budgeting. That’s really the elephant in the living room we’re all trying to navigate around, isn’t it? Here are some of the words I’ve heard line managers and department heads use to describe budgeting: Stressful… Intimidating… Frustrating… Confusing. I’ve heard…    Read More

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