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Editorial Reviews. From the Back Cover. Today's most comprehensive, up-to- date business Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets. Use features like bookmarks eBook features: Highlight, take notes, and. Editorial Reviews. About the Author. Gene Zelazny is the Director of Visual Communications at It With Charts Complete Toolkit - Kindle edition by Gene Zelazny. Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets. Say It With Charts: The Executive's Guide to Visual Communication, 4th Edition by Gene Zelazny () Preview the textbook, purchase or get a.

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Choosing a Good Chart. . his books Say It With Charts and Say It With Presentations—for .. dark night. 1 For information on downloading a copy of the Nora used to say, 'This is the only book you need.' Choose from Get it for free as a newly prepared eBook. Download in x, x or x Sep 26, DOWNLOAD FULL. doc Ebook here { }. A simple solution to all your problem is this: Put chart title in every.

Slideshare uses cookies to improve functionality and performance, and to provide you with relevant advertising. If you continue browsing the site, you agree to the use of cookies on this website. See our User Agreement and Privacy Policy. See our Privacy Policy and User Agreement for details. Published on Sep 26, A free e-book which contains 14 practical tips to help you make effective, smarter and awesome charts. A must read for all.

The estimated amount of time this product will be on the market is based on a number of factors, including faculty input to instructional design and the prior revision cycle and updates to academic research-which typically results in a revision cycle ranging from every two to four years for this product. Pricing subject to change at any time. After completing your transaction, you can access your course using the section url supplied by your instructor. Skip to main content x Sign In. Sign in to shop, sample, or access your account information.

Please review the errors highlighted below before resubmitting. The username and password you entered did not match any accounts in our file. Please try again. Sign In. Say It With Charts: Program Details. Choosing Charts. Section II: Using Charts. Section III: Say It With Concepts Metaphors. Visual Concepts. You should write down the key message on your slide header.

You can also write it in a box near the chart. Make sure it is clearly visible and readable. Example 4. Being the biggest spender in India on advertising, their investors might be worried seeing this chart. So they have added a key message below the chart. They say, even though they are spending less yet they remain competitive in spends on brand building.

Investors have nothing to worry. Look at the chart from Starbucks below: Starbucks performance in its Annual Report, This chart merely tells you that the number of stores is on the rise. There is nothing more that they want to communicate. Hence, no key messages here. This marks the end of our topics on Chart Core. We now move on to Chart Design. It helps the audience read and understand the chart faster.

Try removing the title from a chart you would have presented recently. The audience will take more time to grasp it. Remember that the audience gets only a few seconds to see the chart and make sense of it while you are presenting.

What should a Chart Title be like? Chart title should be descriptive and not too short. Chart title should also have the time period mentioned. The year should be written in full. Example 5. What is the pie chart showing? Break up of sales turnover or profits EBIT? Obviously sales? You know this but the investors do not. How does an investor figure this out?

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You are subconsciously assuming your audience knows what you know. Hence you omit some information by mistake. Having a proper title will eliminate such confusion. Realize they have limited exposure time to see and understand the chart. Admit that it is they who will decide whether your charts are good or bad. A simple solution to all your problem is this: Put chart title in every chart you make.

Number of Data Points After choosing the chart type and giving a chart a proper title, you now need to consider how many data points to display on the chart. What is a Data Point? If your pie chart has 10 parts then it has 10 data points. If the bar chart has 4 vertical bars, there is 1 bar for each of the 4 data points. If you are making a one year chart of the stock price of Infosys, then you will need data points actually you would need somewhere around because there are 52 Sundays plus some holidays when the share market is closed.

How do you decide on the correct number of data points? As you know, a chart is used to prove or disprove a point to the audience. In order to do the analysis, you might need 20 data points but to prove the point in the presentation you might only need So when you 'present' your chart you must have only 10 data points.

What to remember while choosing the number of data points? The more the data points, the more complex the chart becomes.

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Audience understanding is inversely proportional to the no. The more data points your chart has, the lesser the audience will understand in a given time. When presenting data over time, choose data points at equal time gaps.

Example 6. KK Consultants name changed are making a presentation to the new employees of their organization. They are sharing how their organisation has grown leaps and bounds in the last three decades. This is how the chart looks. We have seen this chart already in Example 2. But think of the new employee looking through this and trying to read 14 data points.

To make this argument, you might need to analyze 14 data points, but to present you can manage with only 4. Take a look at this new chart. An audience to understand 14 data points will take time and does not add much value.

By reading 14 data points, it is tough to draw this conclusion added 2 employees per day! Humans cannot mentally analyze so many data points. But with 4 data points, the audience gets the key message far more easily and far more powerfully.

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Look at this chart from the American Heart Association. It talks about the heart disease mortality rates deaths in thousands for males and females. Look closely at the chosen data points; , , , , , and While to are at 5 year gaps, there is also an unwanted Visually all data points look equally far away from each other in time. But they are not. This situation should be avoided. Choose equidistant data points.

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Data Labels After you have chosen the number of data points and created the chart, you now need to label your data. We discussed in the last post that you might require 30 data points to do your analysis but you can present it with only Do you still need to label all 10 data points?

Need not. You are showing the share price of Reliance Industries from April to June Will you label all the data points?

Because that will make the chart cluttered and will serve no purpose. You can just label a few data points which help you convey the key message. What you must remember about labelling your data?

All relevant data points should be labelled. There is no compulsion to label every data point. It depends on what point you are trying to prove with the chart key message. The labels should not clutter the chart and hurt audience understanding. Space them out and make them legible greater than 18 font size.

Position the label properly on the chart. Labels on a pie chart can be inside the pie or outside. The objective that drives this choice is how easily readable and understandable the label is. Example 7.

Take a quick look at this chart from ACC and answer this question. Take a look again. For the first two data points, the label for the line graph was above the line. For the next three, it went below the line and changed its colour from black to white.

The solution: Use different colours for labelling different graphs in this case, use different label colours for bar and line graph.

Use this colour coding when the labels appear so close to each other. When the labels are far away, colour coding is not needed. Chart Legend What is a legend? A legend, as you know, is a guide that helps the audience read your chart. If you are comparing the share prices of Microsoft and Yahoo and your chart has two line graphs, then your legend tells the audience which line denotes which company.

The legend is a 'visual' symbol of the data series that has been plotted on the chart. When you don't need a legend? By definition, a legend tells you which bar or line chart is for which data series. Hence, you need a legend only if you have more than one data series on your chart. You don't need it if you are showing the growth of sales over time and have just one line graph or a series of bar graphs. Most of the graphs you would have seen in your life will have a legend even when there is only one data series.

Reason 1: Because the legend comes by default in the software. Reason 2: Because of your ignorance. Where do you place the legend? The legend by default is always placed to the right. But there are in total 5 places where you can place it. Where you place it has a huge impact on the usefulness of the legend. Remember the objective of a legend is to make the chart easy to read.

Few examples of legends Placing the labels outside the pie chart without having a legend is much better. Pie chart on the right looks much smarter and friendly. Lesson bar charts below: The legend should be in sync with the bar graphs. If your bar goes from left to right then you legend should be read from left to right. Lesson line graphs above: Labelling the lines on the right is better than a legend. Do not use a legend when you have only one data series example, sales over time.

When making pie charts, put the series name with the data labels outside the pie itself. Do not create a legend. Place the legend where it is logical. Make it sync with the way data has been presented. When using line graphs, label the line graphs instead of putting a legend.

Chart Axis 1. What is an axis? An axis in a chart or graph is the line along which we measure our variables. It is nothing but a scale or a ruler. The x-axis and y-axis tells you what are being measured and lets you read the measurements. What should you know about an axis? First, you should know the purpose of an axis. An axis tells you what is being measured and also lets you read the values.

As an audience, you should always check out the axis before looking at the bar or line graph. Second, because the axis tells you how to read the chart, you have to label the axis with what is being measured and the units of measurement. This is however theory. Playing with the axis?

Left click to select the axis and then right click to choose Format Axis. Solid Black. You chart will look better with a thicker axis. Axis Options See what happens. The y-axis now starts counting from The growth in sales now looks far better than it looked when the axis started from zero. Which one is better? What should you do? Companies in their annual reports do play this trick very often. You should as a rule, always start you axis from zero. In case you are not doing so, for some justified reason, then you must inform the audience of this aberration.

When and how should you use secondary axis? Let us take an example. You have to make a chart to show the financial highlights of SpaceTel a hypothetical company.

Here is the raw data. Using our framework from Tip 3, you can create a bar graph or a line graph because you are comparing data over time. You create a bar graph. Here is how your chart looks like: What is wrong with the graph on the left? The software looks at all the values and tries to fix a scale axis which includes the maximum value of Hence, it has taken the scale up to How do you solve this problem?

That 'other' axis is called 'secondary axis'. On this we measure the profit percentage. Adding a secondary axis Step-1 Choose the data series 'profit percentage' by clicking next to the profit bar in red.

Click on the data series again one click on any green bar will select all bars. Right click and select 'Change Series Chart Type'. Choose a Line Graph. Click Ok. Your chart is ready. Axis is a scale which tells you what is being measured and its unit of measurement. These two pieces of information have to be present in every chart.

You need not label them near the axis. You can mention it with the chart title. Your axis should start from zero. In case it does not, inform the audience about it. When you are measuring variables like sales, profits whose values are different from each other or the gap between maximum and minimum value is too big, then add a secondary axis.

Data Source Your chart is made from raw data. But this raw data is not a fiction of your imagination. It has a source. A place from where you culled out the data for analysis and representation. Why you need to worry about the source? You are in-charge of new product launches in your company. You have studied the fairness soap market for men in India and in your presentation to the CEO you are recommending to launch a new soap brand. In the process of research you would have come across lots of data.

During your presentation, your CEO might ask; "Where did you get this data from? For the audience to accept your charts' key message the point you are trying to make , they need to know if the chart is credible. They might not ask for the source always, but having it on the chart enhances the credibility of your argument.

When should you mention the source and when you should not? Though every chart has a source, you need not mention it all the time.

It is required when there is a need to boost credibility. Talking about credibility, there are two situations you need to consider: Internal Credibility - Source of data is optional ii. External Credibility - Source of data is necessary When you are presenting something from your area of expertise domain , you do not need to compulsorily mention a source.

The credibility comes from you the presenter and your audience knows about your expertise. They trust you. But, it is possible that you are presenting something outside your domain. In which case, the audience would like to know the source of your data. Remember, the taller your claim, the more credibility you require to support it. You can't get away by simply making bold claims and recommendations and not backing it up. How and where to mention the source? But in how much detail you should mention the source?

Ask yourself this question and you will know in how much detail you should write the source: Remember, you trust yourself more than others trust you. You are honest does not mean you will not furnish the source of your data. Chart Colours While we are talking about chart colours, I can see many eyebrows rising. Let's talk data.

This post is about how to balance the colours on a slide so that chart colours become invisible. The way I look at colours is: It enhances the taste of the dish without getting noticed.

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If the colour of your chart is getting noticed, you have failed. It has to make the job of audience easy to read the chart 2. It should not distract and draw attention towards itself Example Do you even feel like reading the chart?

Would you be proud of presenting this chart? How many colours should your chart have? To colour a chart you need to take care of many things.

It is not only the colour of the bar or line graph. You need to consider the following four: Colour of the plot area 3. Colour of the chart area, and 4. Colour of the slide. Look at this image.

The colour of your bar cannot be seen in isolation from the colours around it. Steps in colouring a chart Step — 1: You start by taking the slide background colour as given.

You do not decide the slide background colour after creating the chart. Hence, if your background colour is white then you have to start from that point. It is always better to have a white slide background colour. Step — 2: If the slide background is white, make the other two white as well. Step — 3: Using gradients and images will reduce visibility.

You can use shades of the same colour light and dark blue if there are two data series. If you have more than two data series use multi-colour bar graphs.

Summary 1. The fewer the number of colours you use, the better your chart becomes. Do not do anything that draws attention of your audience towards the colour of the chart. Stay away from gradients, flashy colours and using images in your bars.

They reduce the visibility of your chart. Chart Animation By animating a chart we mean animating that line graphs or bar graphs of the chart. Animation would make each data point or series of data points come one after the other, with a clear purpose. When to use animation and why? Animation is a powerful tool. It brings your presentation to life. When slides after slides are static, animation comes in to break the monotony.

It draws the attention of the audience and gets your point across very effectively. You should use animation when: You want to draw the audience attention to an important point 2.

You want to share information in a phased manner 3. When you have too much information to present in a chart, it is better to animate and present in a sequence. How to animate a chart? We will understand chart animation with the help of an example. Example Because your soap brand Red No. Your charts' key message is that your brand is much bigger than the 4 more popular soap brands in the market.

These four brands regularly advertise and are more popular than Red No. Here is your chart. You can present this chart at once and make the point; "You know these big brands. But did you know we are bigger than them? Create a story. Animate the five bar graphs animation effect: At the last, when your brand's bar goes past all these popular brands, your audience will get the message loud and clear.

14 Tips To Present Awesome Charts

They will remember this animation and will also remember the message. Step 1: Your source data has to be in the ascending order Step 2: In slide show mode, the axes and title would be present. Your bar graphs will come one by one mouse click. How to avoid animation misuse? Animation is a 'special' effect which works when used very few times. Then only it breaks the monotony and draws audience attention. Do not do the following: Do not animate every possible chart in your presentation ii.

Do not use wrong effects line graph coming as 'wipe from bottom', horizontal bar coming as 'wipe from left' Use simple effects like fade, zoom, wipe, ascend, descend, expand, compress, etc. Do not use more than 1 type of effect in a chart. Every sub-part of pie should come as fade in. Do not make one part zoom in, another zoom out and the third fade. If used prudently, animation can become the secret weapon that will give your presentation an undue advantage over others.

Highlighting To highlight verb means to make something more prominent. It is different from the noun highlight which means the most important part. We are concerned with the verb form here. What do you highlight? You highlight a data point or a data series or a relation between two data points or series. When do you highlight something important? By definition, you highlight something that you want to make prominent. It is not already conspicuous obvious to the eye. Some instances when you highlight are: You highlight to point out the change in values of a variable a growth in sales over time.

By looking at the graph, the growth is obvious but the percentage is not. You highlight to give a reason for change in values of a variable a sudden fall in sales, a dip in share prices.

The reason is not captured in the graph and hence needs to be separately mentioned. You highlight to make something stand out. Something that is already there but as part of a crowd. Like your company's sales graph when compared to 9 other companies. You highlight to bring out the relationship between two variables. You can highlight that. Chart 1 shows the sales growth of ACC over time. Never highlight what puts you in a bad light unnecessarily.

They are showing quarterly revenue growth over the last 8 quarters. They are giving a reason a clarification that the good growth of The growth is mainly organic which is a good sign.

Talking about world's largest refining companies they highlight their own place among 16 other companies by giving their bar a red colour. This is a good way to stand out. In the same chart, they But it does not stand out. They should have used another colour. Chart 4 presents the sales and profits of a hypothetical organization.

Profit as a percentage of sales is important to know and has not been captured in the graph.

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How do you highlight something important? If you have carefully observed you will notice that colour and shapes are used to highlight.

Merely text is not sufficient. In Chart 3, if the RIL bar was given a gradient, the effect will not be as great. Using colour is better and using red even better as it attracts our eyes the most. You can highlight by: Using shapes and colours along with text, and 2.

Using animation Animation is a medium you should use to highlight something important. Read more on animation in Tip While talking about key message we discussed that key message is the point you are trying to prove with your chart to read about key message click here.

Highlighting can be a good way of supporting your key message.