Published Now and Again for Business Users of Microsoft Excel.
New Bug + New Blog
Wednesday, Aug 26, 2009
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other Excel users.
Last week I was testing Excel 2010 and discovered an ugly bug. I looked for
the same bug in Excel 2007 and found it.
Here's why the bug is so bad:
Under certain conditions, Excel 2007 and 2010 automatically delete range
names when a workbook is opened. If you save the workbook, or any workbooks that
reference it, you could damage those workbooks.
Also, last week, I was setting up my new
ExcelUser Blog. This seemed like a perfect
topic for my first blog entry. You'll find the entry at
Excel Bug Deletes Some External Range Names Automatically.
In this first entry, I explain how the bug works. And in the next few
entries, I'll explain how useful certain range name strategies are for
reporting, how the bug affects those strategies, and what appears to be the best
way to avoid the bug.
Calculating Seasonal Indexes With Excel
Many companies experience seasonal variations in their sales. Some experience
monthly variations, some experience weekly variations, and some experience both.
Years ago, I discovered an old statistics book that showed a simple way to calculate
seasonal indexes. I set up the method in Lotus 1-2-3 and later duplicated it in
one of the earliest versions of Excel.
I recently found that old Excel workbook and updated the method for current
versions of Excel. (I've not been able to find the statistics book, however.)
You'll find my article about the method in
How to Analyze Seasonal Sales in Excel.
A Matter of Urgency
I recently read John P. Kotter's new book, "A Sense of Urgency." He argues
that a significant reason companies don't adapt as they should is because they
haven't instilled a constructive sense of urgency within the company.
"A sense of urgency is not an attitude that I must have the project team meeting today," he wrote, "but that the meeting must accomplish something
Kotter discusses four tactics for heightening the sense of urgency. One of
these can influence Excel reporting significantly. He wrote that companies need to concentrate a lot more on external
As he told Inc magazine in a recent interview, "A lot of people create heavy-duty measurement systems to track the progress of their companies,
but that's not how leaders with the greatest sense of urgency do it. They pay attention to their internal
numbers, but they're much more interested in what's going on outside. They want to have as many metrics
about their competitors as they do about themselves."
In "Spark A Sense of Urgency to Improve Performance...Using Excel Dashboards"
I explain Kotter's ideas in greater detail and explain why Excel dashboard
reports can help to support Kotter's ideas.
Enough for now. Check out my blog...
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