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I’m a fan of Microsoft products. I use Office and think it’s great. They’ve been a huge supporter of my Rotary computer projects as they’ve donated equipment, we get software and an almost-free price, etc.

However, they recently upgraded to Office 2016 and it’s taken a few steps backwards, at least with Word. While they’ve added some nice, timesaving features, in just a few weeks I’ve found a number of features, which I regularly use, to be missing. The most notable (to me) is I can’t customize the toolbar. No longer is there an icon to immediately print, and I can’t put it on the toolbar. I can’t add icons for emailing the document or for “save as.”

When I wrote them I was told the customizing feature hasn’t been added yet. Really? It’s been on every version I can remember. How do you upgrade a product and miss including long-time features?

There’s an old adage, if it’s not broken, don’t fix it. It baffles me when a company as successful and with as many smart people as Microsoft does something like this.

As I’ve written before, it’s a classic case of overthinking. We put on so many bells and whistles it caused us to forget about the basics. When you put the customer first, you avoid this kind of thing. Because it’s not about how many features there are, it’s about ease of use of the ones someone needs or wants.

More importantly, it’s making it easy for your customer to buy and then recommend your product.

“The weirder you’re going to behave, the more normal you should look. It works in reverse too. When I see a kid with three or four rings in his nose, I know there is absolutely nothing extraordinary about that person.” P.J. O’Rourke

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