With Office 2007’s SP2 installed SmartArt has become a lot more usable/smarter. Now you can use the great diagram templates in SmartArt and ungroup them if needed. Why ungroup? For fine tuning, modifying to meet the slides exact needs, or animating would be a few of my top reasons.

1. Insert SmartArt

2. Ungroup

3. Result is a single box of grouped autoshapes (and the smartart programming for updating text is removed)

4. Ungroup one more time and you have all individual elements

– Troy @ TLC