Author: Liz Rosen

Liz Rosen

About Liz Rosen

Liz Rosen is LiquidPlanner’s Director of Customer Support. Three things she loves: gazing at the Olympic Mountains as they sit over Puget Sound, long distance open-water swimming, and losing herself in a good novel.

Just Keep Swimming: Using LiquidPlanner to Manage the Big Swim

I spend much of my life outside of LiquidPlanner in and around bodies of water. I’m a passionate open water swimmermarathon swimming, in particular—and a big part of that passion is giving back to the sport. Some swimmers help out at races in various capacities, some crew for other swimmers, but I volunteer my time as a race director.

Directing an open water swim race is much like being a wedding coordinator, an event planner, or a circus director—it’s even like being a project manager! A heap of planning goes into getting a swim race off the ground successfully (no pun intended). There are permits to file, supplies to acquire, donations to solicit, volunteers to juggle, all on top of some specific, critical tasks with to-do lists that ensure the event is as safe as possible.

I have a confession to make: seven years ago, when I applied for my original position in customer support at LiquidPlanner, I didn’t actually know that project management software existed. Nor did I recognize that I was a project manager! I just thought I was a very organized person.

As I was prepping for my interview, I realized that not only did I want the job, but I suddenly craved the ability to use LiquidPlanner to keep track of everything required to plan my events. I was overjoyed with the discovery that I could possibly forego spreadsheets and giant three-ring notebooks. I was even more ecstatic to realize that I’d be able to use that same information as a template for the following year and hopefully make the job easier over time.

In my workspace, I set up the overall race as a package. The projects are the significant areas of focus for the race: swimmer registration, boats, volunteers, safety, donations, swag… (I could have done this as a project with subfolders, and it would have worked just as well.) Then, the tasks are just that, all the bits and pieces of work that need to get done within each area of focus. I keep loads of information in the Notes section of each task, which helps me tremendously from year to year: links to various websites, applications, important phone numbers, prices of items I need to buy, shopping lists, and more. My absolute favorite part of using LiquidPlanner is my ability to forward emails with quotes, invoices, pictures, insurance binders, permits, etc., into my workspace so that I don’t have to print everything out or have a filing system in my inbox or my computer directory.

I’ve been directing races for over 10 years now. Depending on the year and the size of the event I’m managing, I may invite volunteers into my workspace and teach them how to make comments and update their tasks, in lieu of sending me email updates between meetings. For smaller events, where I’m doing most of the work myself, using LiquidPlanner is key in keeping me organized and thinking about what needs to happen next. My workspace also functions as a giant agenda during calls and meetings.

When it comes to race day, I always put a task at the very top of my LiquidPlanner inbox with emergency contact numbers and the most important day-of-race information on it. Then, when I’m out on the water observing the event, I can quickly go to My Tasks on the iPhone app and see that information as the first task.

Everything in one place. No scrolling thru contacts or juggling a paper notebook while out in the elements to find what I need in a hurry.

Simply being able to lay out each and every little thing that needs to get done over the course of several months, in a spare minute here and there, has saved me numerous heartaches and sleepless nights, which in turn has produced a number of successful and safe events.

The Real Story Behind Why Your Organization Wants You to Track Time


track time

For organizations that track time, there’s always going to be some resistance—or at least questions about it. Even if nobody says it out loud, I’ll bet your employees are at least wondering: “Why on earth is my company making me track time?”

It’s easy to feel like tracking time is a way for leadership to keep an eye on the rank and file. But that’s far from the truth—leaders are busy people. And remember, if you’re tracking your time, your managers probably are too.

Time tracking isn’t about keeping an eye on teams’ productivity as much as it is a smart business move. Think about it: Time tracking yields data that is critical for monitoring business and employee performance. Timesheet data provides businesses with the ability to not only benchmark, but even more importantly, to forecast. Time tracking data surfaces project cost, project profitability, employee availability, employee cost, and so much more.

Whether you’re a project team member wondering “why on earth…?” or a manager who needs to answer this question—here are some ways to talk about time tracking that will get your teams to understand, and feel good about starting their timers.

For projects, time tracking is important because it:

  • Surfaces key operational metrics that might otherwise remain hidden.
  • Allows businesses to measure the true costs of any project.
  • Offers real-time visibility into work that’s been done and work that’s left to do.
  • Helps companies stick to timeline or project budgets.
  • Enables managers to understand employee utilization and capacity—and allocate accordingly.
  • Creates a historical record, enabling you to estimate future projects with greater accuracy.
  • Can save you money especially when working on a retainer basis. Time tracking is critical for preventing over-servicing.
  • Helps answer the question: “Can my team take on this new initiative?”
  • Allows for continual processes evaluation and improvement.

For employees, time tracking is important because it:

  • Gives insight into how much time is going into different tasks and projects.
  • Yields data that can be used to ask for more resources, a raise, even a promotion.
  • Fosters autonomy.
  • Helps keep track of remote or freelance workers.
  • Provides insight into what an ideal work process looks like.
  • Helps stay in a productivity flow, and limit interruptions.
  • Empowers employees to use their own data for goal setting and/or decision-making.
  • Provides data that can be used to reward employees who meet or exceed project deadlines, budgets and goals.
  • It keeps employees from being overschedule and overworked—which improves engagement, boosts morale and increases productivity.

Let your employees in

Time tracking comes alive when teams feel like they play an integral part of the work being accomplished. So, if you’re a team leader or a manager, provide knowledge. This means letting your team in on the story of why everyone’s doing the work they’re doing: what the purpose is and how a particular project moves the business forward. Address what’s in it for them and their career, too. Empower individuals—give each person the right amount of autonomy to make decisions, so team members feel like they’re contributing to the momentum of this larger story. Make people feel that they’re a key to success. Once team members feel like they’re part of things, they can begin to understand the value of tracking time—because it will matter to them as well.

Time tracking is a common project management challenge. Want solutions to more? Download our eBook, “How to Solve the Top 9 Project Management Challenges.”

An Introduction to Dynamic Project Management

Help! How to Get What You Need From LiquidPlanner Support

customer support

Learning how to use a new tool can be hard. We’ve all been through it. That’s why, here at LiquidPlanner, we try to make the learning and onboarding process as easy as possible for you and your team.

We might even sprinkle in a bit of fun in too! If getting help is a party, here’s the Who, What, Where, When, and Why from the invitation.


Who provides help to LiquidPlanner customers? Primarily, it’s a crew of highly knowledgeable and friendly Customer Support Specialists, but it’s also:

  • Customer Success Managers
  • Account Executives
  • Accounting Team
  • Professional Service Consultants


What types of things can you get help with? There are so many, but here’s a handful of examples:

  • How to use all the features in the LiquidPlanner application
  • Best practices for using LiquidPlanner and project management in general
  • How to use the API to build your own integrations
  • Billing and accounting-related information
  • Pricing and features


Where do you find help when you need it? Our self-service help is extensive, but we have many ways for you to reach a person when you need one too.

  • Explore our newly updated Help Center.
  • Look and/or ask for help directly from your workspace – click on the Help tab to find links to the help center and videos. Support Request, Feedback and Bug forms are here too.
  • API Developers can check out our Developer Hub.
  • Ask questions during welcome calls, trainings or workspace consultations.
  • Browse or subscribe to our Blog.
  • Download information from our Resources Hub.
  • Email us or fill out the Contact form on our website.

When can you get help from LiquidPlanner? Officially, we’re available and looking forward to hearing from customers between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. U.S. Pacific Time, but you’ll definitely find that tickets submitted will get answered before and after hours when we can!

Why are we dedicated to helping you be successful with LiquidPlanner? Our customers are passionate about their work, and about project management. And because our customers are also passionate about doing things more effectively and fluidly, and about saving time and money and increasing productivity – we want to be enablers and fuel that passion. Look around. Search for what you need. Read interesting things. Watch cool videos. Learn more daily.  Can’t find it? Ask us a question and allow us to do what we love – helping you succeed!

If you like a self-service experience, check out our new Help Center.


What We Do With Customer Feedback at LiquidPlanner

Recently we wrote a post that described how LiquidPlanner customers improve our product in which the author, Haley wrote, “Customers provide imperative feedback.” I thought I’d expand upon this powerful little statement and give you an inside look of what we do when we get customer feedback.


Call it a Who-What-Where-When-Why-and-How of our customer feedback lifecycle.

Who provides feedback to LiquidPlanner?

  • Existing customers
  • Future customers (prospects; people who are evaluating us)
  • Website visitors

What is feedback?

  • Extremely valuable information about our product.
  • It ranges from functionality questions, to what’s not working for a customer, to feature requests that would improve a customer’s planning process.

Where is feedback generated from?

When do we get feedback?

A better question is: “When don’t we get feedback?” Answer: Not very often. Our customers are highly engaged.

Why do we get feedback?

People are passionate. They’re passionate about their work, and about project management. They’re passionate about doing things more effectively and fluidly, and about saving time and money and increasing productivity. For these people, LiquidPlanner brings everything together and they want us to hear about what they care about.

giving feedback

How do we manage feedback and what do we do with it?

  • We enter it into a task. Here at LiquidPlanner, we eat our own dog food. In other words, all of your feedback is diligently transcribed and put into a task in LiquidPlanner for safe keeping. Your feedback might actually get appended to an existing task, but when you send us a brand new idea we add a new task to our Inbox. This gives us a way to handle, organize and keep track of everything.
  • We have a meeting to discuss all requests and feedback. Twice a week, representatives from the Support team meet with our developers to discuss everything from miniscule bugs to fully-formed feature requests. In those same meetings we mull over both criticism and kudos. All of this helps us make the important decisions about which features are important to our customers, to us, and where they all fit on the LiquidPlanner roadmap. Then, we assign and estimate the work (tentatively), and file it in the appropriate feature area (project) and location (package).
  • We seek out feedback. From time to time we call customers and interview them about upcoming features in order to make sure we’re on the right track. Other times, we’ll show customers mock-ups and ask brief questions via email. Sometimes we put information on our forums and hope you’ll weigh in. If you’re a customer, you might have noticed that we respond to your support tickets not only with answers, but also with questions in order to gain insight on your use case. Your answers enable us to add your story to a feature request already in the works.
  • We provide feedback status: We do our very best to follow up and make sure that you know you’ve been heard. We are as honest and transparent as possible and will even tell you if there’s something we know we absolutely cannot do. On the flip side, as Haley wrote in her blog post, “fulfilling customer requests doesn’t end with introducing the feature and high-fiving one another for having completed it.”

When we do implement new features and fix bugs thanks to your feedback, we let you know – via email, follow up tickets, company announcements, blog posts, release notes, updated forum posts, and even social media. We’re always looking out for you!


Related stories:

3 Ways LiquidPlanner Customers Improve Our Product
How to Make the Most of Your 30-Day Trial With LiquidPlanner
LiquidPlanner’s Customer Success Team Helps Customers Succeed

7 Ways to Use Packages to Organize Your Workspace

Real life is happening and it’s no secret that most of us are juggling multiple projects at the same time. We might need to work on one task from project A, then one from project B, and another from project C. Packaging tasks is the only way to model this. In other words, you must use Packages in LiquidPlanner for cross-project prioritization.

OK, so we’ve established that using Packages to prioritize your work is a given. We talk about this all the time in training, help articles and videos, so I won’t flog you with it again here.

Instead, let’s talk about the reasons why you should also use Packages to organize your workspace.

organize your workspace pakages

Visualize that jumbo old-school metal file cabinet. Can you hear the sound it makes as you roll out those big long drawers? Now picture all the neat sections holding groups of files together. Someone had to think about the best way to group them together, right? This is essentially what you’re doing when you set up your LiquidPlanner workspace.

So how might you divide up your workspace into proverbial drawers and sections? What types of groupings will make the most sense to your members? What hits home with regard to your workflow?

To answer these questions, let’s take a look at these seven examples:

1. By teams

team packages
2. By geographic location

geographic packages
3. By project status

project status packages
4. By project type

project type packages


5. By sprints

sprint packages
6. By clients

client packages
7. By feature set

feature set packages

Based on what you see here, did the light bulb come on with a bright idea for your workspace? Tell us what you came up with and drop it in the Comments box, or contact if you need some guidance!

Related stories:

3 Benefits of Using Card View for Managing Projects
LiquidPlanner Tip: Estimating in Ranges
How to Use Custom Fields for Card View in LiquidPlanner

LiquidPlanner’s Customer Success Team Helps Customers Succeed

Lately, LiquidPlanner has put a lot of thought into the meaning of customer support vs. customer success.


Support doesn’t end with troubleshooting technical issues, that’s only the tip of the iceberg.  Read on to see how we can make you an LP superstar.  Allow me to begin with a couple definitions:

  • Customer support: Helping our customers solve problems they encounter when using our product.
  • Customer success: Helping our customers improve specific areas of their business (organization, planning, communication, teamwork, growth, income, overall project success) by using our product.

To elaborate a bit further, customer support deals with small, focused issues that are often technical in nature.

Customer success deals with the application of our product to achieve larger goals. So on that front, our goal is to create true LiquidPlanner evangelists. For that to happen, we must not only have great people to guide (and provide hand-holding at times), but we also have to provide mixed-media supporting materials in place (help documents, how-to and training videos) to support our customers’ success with our product.

Now that we’ve established those definitions, I’m proud to say that I’m part of a Customer Success Team here at LiquidPlanner. So now you might ask, What is the Customer Success team? Well, it’s a combo of the LP Sales Team and the LP Support Team. Here’s how it works:

  • Our Sales Team is comprised of a group of technically knowledgeable, enthusiastic and totally non-sales-y people who work with our trial customers. They answer questions before, during and after hours, showing these customers everything they could ever wish to know before purchasing LiquidPlanner.
  • Our Support Team is comprised of a group of unique ladies who have one important thing in common: a passion for customer service and education. This team serves the needs of our many paying customers, large and small.

A day in the life of our Customer Success Team

Every day of the week, and sometimes on weekends, the Customer Success Team takes emails and calls from potential and existing LiquidPlanner customers. We listen to and answer questions, brainstorm ideas and any needed workarounds, and sometimes there are follow-up calls if, say, we come up with a new idea that we hadn’t thought about initially. All of us are driven to help make LiquidPlanner customers successful at using our product to the best of their ability.


We provide knowledge in a myriad of ways, taking into consideration some of the following: people have different learning styles, our customers live in different time zones around the world, and our customers and their teams have their own way of using LiquidPlanner to suit their specific project needs. Here’s a list of the resources and support we offer:

  1. Online help articles – for those who want how-to info and step-by-step instructions.
  2. Videos – for those who prefer to learn by watching something rather than reading.
  3. Phone calls – for those who prefer a verbal walk-through to watching a video or reading.
  4. Email – for any question you might have. Perhaps you couldn’t find what you were looking for in the Learning and Support center.
  5. Blog posts – for real-world examples and stories about project management and LP features, including insight from team members, outside partners and customers alike.
  6. Weekly training webinars – for those who need a basic LP overview.
  7. Customized training sessions – for anyone , covering any topic; or a personalized basic training for your team.
  8. Workspace reviews and consulting – for those who want to run their processes by an LP expert and bounce around ideas about best practices.

I truly love working for a company where I’m strategically nurturing our customers so that they can have productive, profitable and sustaining experiences using our product.

So, which of our support resources do you use the most?

Share your experience –and success stories – with us in the Comments field, below.

Reporting Can Be So Much More Than Analytics

I recently visited a local LiquidPlanner customer here in Seattle to help train a group of managers on reporting.  As a customer support and adoption manager, I prepared by sitting down to brush up on my Analytics skills, figuring that’s what they’d want to talk about. But I was only partially right.


Generally, managers are slicing and dicing data by people and teams all the time.  So, being familiar with our Analytics module helps them create custom reports with a wealth of information.  However, I quickly realized that the group I was training would also want to know how to keep better tabs on their projects and team members — without micro-managing, without a huge investment of time, and without crunching numbers daily.

Once the lightbulb came on, I showed them all the ways they can use LiquidPlanner to accomplish their reporting needs – outside of our Analytics feature. Here’s the list:

Use Custom Fields:

  • To categorize more specifically.  This eliminates the need to append the task name or its description with specific terms.
  • To inject data that needs to be reported on later (in conjunction with the work that was done).
  • To create a “team” field that shows group responsibility for a project where task owners are cross-functional.
  • To create a “status” field to facilitate workflow when handing a task from one owner to another.

Set Deadline dates, even if you don’t have an actual deliverable:

  • Deadlines provides a fixed visual point that makes a ton of sense once schedule bars start creeping closer and that milestone.
  • Deadlines help calculate how much work can fit into prioritization packages.
  • Status, Remaining, and Total Trend reports can have more impact when there’s a target in play.

Customize the view of your project plan to get all the necessary info at a glance:

PDF Snapshot NEW

Look at the Workload Report to find people who are available, rather than wondering who is booked solid and what they’re actually working on.

Use Plan Exports and Timesheet Exports as reports, especially for those who do like number-crunching:

  • Try exporting plan data.  In one quick download you’ll get the list of project tasks you filtered down to, plus over 30 additional data columns. From here, you can delete what you don’t need and use your Excel wizardry skills to create glorious pivot tables, graphs and pie charts to wow the dude in the corner office.
  • Need granular data regarding hours logged on completed projects?  Use the filtering tools on the timesheet export and just like the previous tip, you’ll get a heap of data to work with.  Delete the ones you don’t need and have fun crunching the rest of the numbers to the delight of Madame CFO.

Hopefully this helps you think about what reporting means to your organization or team – and gets you brainstorming about the information you want to get from your workspace.  If you have questions, please reach out to us – we’d love to help!

Mixing Business with Pleasure: How to Plan Work and Personal Projects in the Same LP Workspace

For those of us who love our jobs, this could be titled “Mixing Pleasure with Pleasure.” Job satisfaction aside, what I’m talking about is how to use the same LiquidPlanner workspace to schedule both work projects and personal items.


The subject recently came up when talking with a friend and LiquidPlanner customer, Gigi (names have been changed to protect the innocent).  Gigi has a graphic design business.  She uses LiquidPlanner to set up her work each week, and to make sure that she doesn’t over-commit her time, or provide false estimates to her clients.  She is so enamored of how well-organized her business is, that she wants to know how to include her personal tasks and errands in the same workspace as her business projects.

How to set up the workspace

Helping her model this was pretty easy.  Here’s a screen shot of how we structured GiGi’s workspace, beginning with a mixture of packages and project folders:

3-21-2013 8-10-44 AM


Here’s why we organized her workspace this way:

  • The priority packages are at the top, organized by week, to prioritize a week of tasks at a time.
  • The priority packages all have deadlines on them so that it’s super easy to tell if there’s room for adding more work that week.  (See how the week of the 18th is practically full, but the next week still has some room?)
  • The bottom three packages (Active, Pending, and Personal) are organizational packages that sort out her various projects.
  • Note that both the Pending and Personal Projects packages are “on hold” (see the pause-button graphic to the left of each package).  This prevents them from being scheduled even though the tasks may have estimates.

Next, we add the personal items

Now that you’ve got the basic structure down, here’s how we weave Gigi’s personal tasks into her work projects. (Of course, your version, will be a bit different.)

The image below shows an expanded view of the package for the second week (March 11-15):

3-21-2013 8-11-04 AM
  • You can see that it’s loaded up with individual tasks from her various active business projects (Spec Project, Write site copy) and her personal task items (caulk tub, buy new shoes, etc.).
  • Note that the work tasks have schedule bars, but the personal tasks don’t.
  • As I mentioned in the first example, deadlines are attached to each of the priority packages.  This way LiquidPlanner will immediately notify Gigi when she’s put more work in than can be done in a given time frame, based on her estimates and availability settings.
  • Each week the goal is to empty out the priority packages. This means that the tasks either get marked done, or they get moved down to the next week if there wasn’t time to complete them.  Once the package is empty, the package itself can be marked done.  (This is very similar to how some of our agile dev customers use sprint packages!)

Make sure the professional tasks stay center stage

Since the personal tasks aren’t paying the bills, it’s not mandatory that they are worked on during business hours. Gigi doesn’t want her personal tasks to take time out of her billable availability within the LP tool. The schedule bars on the work tasks, seen creeping towards the deadlines each week, help keep Gigi on track and delivering to her customers on time.

How the personal stuff fits in

The personal tasks, while listed in plain sight, aren’t scheduled.  They might be tackled during the evenings, before work, or on a lunch break. However, because of ranged estimates, Gigi might finish a project early, have a little extra time on her hands, and finds she can sneak in that shopping trip to Road Runner Sports before the 5 pm rush.  And oh, the glorious satisfaction of marking those personal items done when complete!

And if they don’t get done, c’est la vie – drag-and-drop ‘em, and move them to next week’s package!


Liz Rosen is LiquidPlanner’s Customer Support & Adoption Manager.

How to Track Bugs in LiquidPlanner

Did you know that you can use LiquidPlanner for, or in addition to, bug tracking software?

Many LiquidPlanner customers do both, depending on the nature of their team and the systems that are already in place, among other things. A little over a year ago, Liz Pearce wrote an earlier version of this blog post, Bug Tracking in LiquidPlanner, and we still get a lot of questions on the topic. So, here’s a refresher for you, with the latest information and screen shots. We know that some customers are using our API to integrate with GitHub, Jira, and Bugzilla, to name a few. Now, you can use LiquidPlanner Webhooks too, which can make integration even easier. Internally, we use LiquidPlanner exclusively for filing, tracking, verifying, and collaborating on bugs and incidents. We do all this without any outside integration.

Our Support and Sales teams learn about issues from customers and prospects via phone calls and emails, in addition to fielding incoming tickets with Zendesk. We also hear about new issues through Tweets, and Facebook comments, but those are resolved immediately, or just need quick replies. But when you have the kinds of bugs and issues that need help from our development team, that’s where LiquidPlanner comes into play.

Why only LiquidPlanner? We want to track bugs along with the rest of our work, from within our schedule. Bugs need to be assigned, estimated, and prioritized with our project work, based on severity and impact. We fix bugs (new and existing) in every release of LiquidPlanner, and since LiquidPlanner is the one system we all look at every day, it doesn’t make sense for us to track them in a separate system.

We think the Inbox is the best place to track new bugs. Some tasks may be created directly in the UI, but for the most part we take advantage of email integration. We’ve all added the email address of our workspace Inbox to our address books so that it’s handy. Anything that needs attention can then quickly and easily be sent in. We create business rules with our team, and do our best to prepend the subject line of emails with “BUG:”— and then give a hint as to what it’s about, since this will become the task name.

Here’s what our Inbox looks like:

3-14-2013 8-32-20 AM

What happens with the email? As mentioned above, the subject of the email became the task name. The body of the email (including screenshots, repro steps, or error messaging) was saved to the Notes section of the task. Any documents you attached to the email were automatically uploaded to the Documents section. This ensures that that all relevant information stays with the task as it goes through our workflow.

Processing the Inbox: As you can see in the above screenshot, we also use the Inbox to collect feature requests and other to-dos for our various teams. It fills up fast. To handle this volume, we meet twice weekly to triage everything, and empty the Inbox. During these meetings, we review every new item relatively quickly as a group – estimating, assigning, and prioritizing as we go. Some bugs get moved into the current sprint, others get pushed into the staging sprint, or out to the backlog. If a new bug is assigned to a developer, they get notified through email and it shows up in their list of Active Tasks.

Bug bashing: We typically structure the work within each sprint into several major categories. One of which is “Bugs.” This lets us view, analyze, and report on the bugs as a group —separate from other tasks like new features, or tech debt. However, as you can see in the image below, the amount of work associated with bugs gets complex – and hence our interest in tracking them in conjunction with our other project work!

3-14-2013 8-34-09 AM

Customization and organization: We use custom fields to indicate the feature area and severity of the bug. When prioritizing or doing other editing, we select the appropriate custom field. This is great for both filtering in the plan, and for reporting purposes too.

3-14-2013 8-34-36 AM

Collaborate! All comments, collaboration, and updates are stored in the task. This includes references to specific customers who may have been affected and conversation about repro steps. We also have LiquidPlanner integrated with our source control system, so that code check-in notifications are automatically added as comments to the task (or, the bug).

Sometimes this information can pile up, but since the most recent comments are added to the top of the list, it’s pretty easy to stay up on the latest happenings of each bug. Perhaps a concise summary or the most important information will be put into the “Brief Description” section of the edit panel. For new documents that have been uploaded to the task, don’t forget that you can sort by uploaded date.

Finally, once the bug has been fixed, we assign it back to the creator (or a tester) for verification. By simply switching ownership of the task, we can move it through an informal workflow that doesn’t bog us down in process. The person who created the item is also notified by email that they have a new assignment.

3-14-2013 8-35-33 AM

Once the fix has been verified, the item is marked “Done” and becomes part of our fully searchable archive for later reference. Voilà!

LiquidPlanner might not match all the features of a dedicated bug management system. But what it might lack in dedicated features it makes up for in ease of use, simplicity, and integration into our other processes.

Why #IHeartMyTeam, from LP Support

Valentines DayIn the spirit of Valentine’s Day and why we “heart” our teams, I wanted to share a little tale from the Support Services Team…

Mary Ellen and I were interviewing candidates to add to our team, and Joe Prospect asked us what I thought was a fabulous question: “I keep hearing about the great culture at LiquidPlanner, but what does that mean to you?” Mary Ellen & I think alike a lot, so it was no surprise that our answers were pretty much the same.

In particular, we both love that everyone’s opinions are heard and matter here at LP. Sure, this means that discussions can sometimes get lively (and sometimes heated), as we all express ourselves. But nobody gets offended or takes anything personally. Some of my favorite moments are when I feel passionate about something and go all out to describe it, and then someone else does the same thing and I immediately have my light-bulb moment, and exclaim “Oh yeah, okay, I like his idea better, never-mind!”

A little sidebar here, but relevant I promise: As you can imagine, it’s important to apply discipline to these discussions to ensure that they result in useful, actionable ideas. LiquidPlanner, the tool, plays a key role in that. It is our reference point for the topics that are up for discussion in our twice-weekly triage meetings. It is the place that we capture the ideas and decisions that come out these discussions. It’s how we assign ongoing ownership of the action items.

With that framework in place, we are free to mix it up without spiraling into random chaos. This is part of the culture too. If we start to veer in that direction, someone on the team is guaranteed to yell out “rules of triage!” and thus our signal that we are veering off the intended focus of the discussion. This is hard to avoid sometimes with a smart and fiery team, but it’s that very energy that we love most about being part of the LiquidPlanner team.