When Silicon Image was still a small company, I worked directly for the VP of Sales. One day he came to me and asked if I could come up with a way to track upcoming design wins. Up to that point it had been done manually, through e-mails among the participants. There were few off-the-shelf tools back then, and no budget for a fancy database system, so he asked me – the only one adventurous enough to engage with Microsoft Office in serious terms!
I read and experimented, and ended up with some sophisticated Excel spreadsheets, with pivot tables, graphs and charts, and protected areas on worksheets.
The project expanded to include budget planning, equipment tracking, etc.
Eventually, when the company grew, a whole new set of real point tools came to us, along with a staff to do this tracking. I continued on with my Application Engineering job. But for the time when it was needed, I stepped up and learned a new tool set and delivered.