Say It With ChartsWorkbook GENE ZELAZNY Edited by Steve SaksonMcGraw- Hill New York Chicago San Francisco Lisbon Lon. SAY IT WITH CHARTS This page intentionally left blank SAY IT WITH DOWNLOAD PDF SAY IT WITH CHARTS THE EXECUTIVE'S GUIDE TO VISUAL. Editorial Reviews. From the Back Cover. Today's most comprehensive, up-to- date business Say It With Charts, 4th Edition, walks you through the entire visual presentation process and shows youstep-by-stephow to create compelling, .
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In Say It With Charts, Fourth Edition—the latest, cutting-edge edition of his best- selling presentation guide—Gene Zelazny reveals time-tested tips for preparing. [DOWNLOAD] PDF Say It With Charts: The Executive's Guide to Visual Communication by Gene Zelazny [DOWNLOAD] PDF Say It With Charts. Author: Gene Zelazny Pages: Publication Date Release Date: ISBN: Product Group:Book Ebook download any format Say.
All charts in this book are derived from fictitious data. They are for illustrative purposes only and must not be used as source material for content. In actual practice, you might want to delete them from the charts. For example, when producing onscreen visuals where space is limited, you might decide to include the message title only in your written script and not show it on the visual.
However, omitting the title does not mean omitting the step of making certain, first and foremost, that you are clear about your message, what you want to show, the specific point you want to make, since this will determine the chart form to use. This was done because, at times, the message you have determined, based upon your analysis of the data, will imply a dual comparison, e.
In these cases, you must determine which comparison is primary and which is secondary. Consider, for example, the following message which contains both a time series and an item comparison: In other words, we are interested not only in the chronological change in sales time series but also in the performance of sales item number 1 compared with profits item number 2. However, the primary emphasis remains on changes over time, 74 and we would therefore use the basic chart form most appropriate to a time series comparison.
In this case, the best choice would be a line chart with a separate line for each of the two items. In the portfolio, these dual comparison charts have been included in the section on the comparison I judged to be primary.
Naturally, scale values are used in practice, but omitting them should not obscure the relationship each chart illustrates. In fact, it is a good test of your own charts to see whether messages come across clearly without showing the scales.
This does not mean that scaling considerations are unimportant to the design of charts. Here is an extreme example of each. Our quick impression is that profits are declining. However, on closer inspection we notice four scaling problems: Together they create an unfortunately misleading picture of declining performance.
Pity the shareholders. In the chart at the right, we see more quickly and clearly that profits are increasing. Not true, as we can see from the chart on the right. Everything else—titles, labels, scale values—merely identifies and explains. The most important feature of the picture is the impression you receive.
Scaling has an important controlling effect on that impression. Here is a demonstration of how easily and how substantially the scale can shape your impression of the message. Which would you choose, A or B? The decision rests on your professional understanding of the significance of the changes. You would therefore select a scale to reflect your understanding of the importance of the changes; perhaps the picture at the left would be appropriate for contracts, the one at the right for floor tiles.
The shape of the chart, from short and wide to tall and narrow The scale range, say, 0 to 5, 0 to 10, or 0 to 25 These and other important scaling considerations are discussed in the commentary that accompanies each chart in the portfolio. Four shadings are used to distinguish the companies, with the darkest shading reserved for Company A to emphasize the aspect of the data mentioned in the title. In this example, the components are arranged according to the natural flow of activities.
Because the eye tends to complete the circumference of a circle, omitting a segment draws attention to the missing component, as Chart 3 shows. In this case, the lack of effort in recruiting new business is implied by the omission of the segment. The arrow further draws your attention to the sector. Note that it is virtually impossible to measure the relative size of each component; if you must do so, you are better off presenting the data in tabular form or as a bar chart see Charts 12 and This makes it unnecessary to repeat the labels for each pie or to use a legend that forces you to look back and forth from the legend to the respective component.
In the process, we disregard two guidelines: When using this technique, keep things simple—no more than three components, no more than two pies.
Beyond two pies, it is better to switch to percent columns see Chart I hesitate to include Chart 7, since it will work only with two components, and even then the shading may be confusing. On the other hand, when kept simple, as we see here, it can be memorable. If in doubt, do not hesitate and use the more conventional two sets of percent columns.
Although percent bars see Chart 21 could be used, positioning the pies to simulate the natural geographic location makes this presentation more effective. Chart 9 illustrates that, as soon as you need to show the relationship among components for more than one total, you are better off with either percent bars or percent columns.
Charts 9 and 10 could be shown with horizontal rather than vertical bars. However, the arrangements shown have become widely used and accepted. Chart 11 combines a pie chart and a percent column to permit comparison of a total within a total: When using this combination, always start with the pie chart and follow with the percent column, not the other way around.
In this presentation, the items are sequenced from high to low to provide a ranking from best to worst performance and to show where the client ranks in the lineup. Chart 14 places the labels above instead of beside the bar.
In this case, better use is made of the vertical space, permitting a smarter-looking and more compact layout. In the process, more space for the horizontal scale is provided to stress the important differences between departments.
The vertical baseline separates the profitable divisions from the losers. The items are ranked from most profitable to least profitable. To keep the chart compact, the labels are shifted from the left for profits to the right for losses. Chart 16, a range bar chart, shows the spread between low and high amounts, rather than just the single amounts. Range bars are useful when interest is in the amounts at each end of the range as well as in the difference between them.
Of the two comparisons, the vertical one is more direct because the items are measured against a common baseline, while it is more difficult to compare the items horizontally, since they do not stack against the same baseline. Chart 18 is a grouped bar chart that compares a number of items—Plants 1, 2, 3—at two points in time. Different shadings are used to distinguish time periods. The dashed lines and arrows, although not necessary, help to emphasize the direction and amount of change.
Overlapping the bars saves vertical space, helps to emphasize the more recent time period, and focuses attention on the gap between the two time periods. In this example, the activities are listed by the decreasing size of the gap. They could also have been arranged by the normal flow of activities, i.
If it is not, the background bar appears thinner than the foreground bar and may confuse the viewer. Charts 18 and 19 disregard the guideline against using bar charts to show changes over time.
It works here with only two time periods. With more than two, use column charts. Chart 21 is a percent subdivided bar chart in which each bar and its components are plotted according to the relative percentage size of its components regardless of the absolute total value represented by the bar.
In this type of chart, there are two baselines against which to place the important components—the one at the left, which connects the bars, and the one at the right, which is not connected.
Because the dividing line between the two segments serves as a common baseline, each component can be compared accurately. In this case the bars are percent, although absolute values can also be used. Charts 23 through 27 introduce the use of arrows in bar charts.
Although not necessary, the arrows add a sense of direction and movement that can often add emphasis to the message title. Chart 23 is, like Chart 21, a subdivided percent bar chart. The components of assets are built up to their cumulative total and balanced against the components of liabilities.
Certainly the bars could be vertical instead of horizontal, although the treatment used here provides more room to the left of the bars for labeling the components.
Chart 25 has become known as a source of change chart. The solid arrows show the cost that is added at each successive stage of a process; the lighter segments indicate the carry-over from the previous stages. This deviation chart stresses the impact on profits of various changes in one or more related items. Here, use of dynamic arrows, rather than static bars, emphasizes the nature of the changes, both positive and negative.
Chart 27 works well in spite of—or perhaps because of—the unconventional treatment of the scale, which begins at the top with 0 percent and moves down to percent. The arrows stress the magnitude of the depletion while pointing to the percentage that remains. The items have been ranked beginning with the region most affected by the depletion and progressing to the region least affected.
The solid bar focuses attention on the fact that most are leaving to take on similar positions with other companies, indicating a problem with their position in this company. The column chart is best used for fewer than eight time periods. In this presentation, the arrow serves the dual purpose of focusing attention on the year and emphasizing the downward level. Chart 31 uses lighter shading for to distinguish that year from all others.
This treatment emphasizes how much sales were in , rather than how much less they were than in This use of dark and light shading can also prove effective for distinguishing actual from estimated data or historical from projected data. Chart 33 employs several techniques to distinguish between positive and negative data: It is a range column chart and emphasizes the spread between two sets of values—in this case, the daily high and low—rather than just the magnitude of the values.
Chart 35 butts two column charts on either side of the baseline: In this case, the columns extended below the line indicate neither a deficit nor an unfavorable condition, but instead reinforce the idea of depth; also, the columns have been narrowed to suggest drilling bits.
To provide a common base of comparison, translate the absolute data into percentages or an index of the base value in this case, divided by and plot the base values at equal heights. In other words, we assume that in the number of stores equaled the revenues and the profits. Then plot the values according to their percentage increase. In this case, the two items—planned versus actual—are related aspects of production.
Remember, one item should be consistently greater than the other. Otherwise the overlapping column hides the thickness of the column in the background. Chart 38 is a subdivided column chart that shows how the totals change over time and the components contribute to the change. For all subdivided charts, the tendency is to show too many components, making individual segments difficult to identify and compare. Use not more than five.
If you need accurate measurements of each component, rely on the approach illustrated by the next chart. This alters the focus of the chart from how the components contribute to the changing trend over time to how each item varies over time. Chart 40 is a percent subdivided column chart. Although the eye is accustomed to reading a page from top to bottom, a column chart is measured from the zero line up as is a subdivided surface chart.
For this reason, the most important component is usually positioned against that base. Use different shadings to distinguish the components within the columns and to help identify the pattern of change for each component across the chart. Here, arrows reinforce the positive and negative nature of the changes while measuring the amounts of change each account represents.
Chart 42, a step-column chart, could be thought of as a column chart with no space between the columns or as a surface line chart with the space between the line and the base shaded; without the shading, it becomes a line chart. It is best for presentation of data that change abruptly at irregular intervals, such as staffing levels.
Two graphic treatment are used: In any case, the bolder, solid line should be reserved for the most significant item. The wavy line at the base of Chart 45 indicates that the bottom of the vertical scale has been cut. In this case, the focus is not on the relative levels of revenue versus expenditures in that event, the chart should be plotted from the zero line but on the differences between the two. Here, different shadings are used to distinguish surplus from deficit.
In this case, thin dashed lines are used to establish the range; shading the range would also work. If you wish to compare change or growth, make the zero lines of both scales coincide and select the scale intervals so that both curves meet at some meaningful point. Better still, convert both series to a common base e.
On this kind of chart, absolute figures increasing at a constant rate e. Since there is no zero line, this chart should not be used to measure levels, magnitudes, or negative data. It cannot legitimately be shown as a surface chart or a column chart. Always use logarithmic scales with caution; if there is any chance that the reader may not understand the scale, explain how to read it and what to look for.
Unlike the logarithmic scale chart, which shows the relative change between any two points in time, the index scale chart shows the relative change only from the base value for each period. It offers an advantage over absolute amount scales since it can be used for comparing two or more series of data that are measured in different kinds of units or in different-sized units.
This kind of comparison may be clearer if changes are presented as simple percentage differences. To provide meaningful comparison between the three items—income, assets, and sales—the scales must be the same for all three. Chart 51 uses a calculation tree to visualize a mathematical formula— in this case, return on investment equals return on sales multiplied by investment turnover. In each window, the trend for two companies is shown, allowing the reader to study the various branches of the tree for the source of any problem in the resulting ROI performance.
If, on the other hand, you want to compare the client to each competitor, the technique in the next example is more appropriate. Chart 53 contains more charts and therefore requires more drafting time since it compares the client separately to each competitor, but the comparison per chart is simpler than in the previous example.
The client line is identical on each chart. Using this approach, you can group the comparisons for easy reading e. You might also emphasize client performance by using a surface chart rather than a curve. The graphic treatment in this example—darker shading for the periods of decline—calls attention to the two quarters under scrutiny. Chart 55 demonstrates the change in the absolute contribution of three components over time, but with the primary emphasis on the total. Only the bottom layer is measured directly from a fixed base.
All other layers are measured from a changing base, and their size can be gauged only approximately. To permit direct reading, use the approach illustrated by Chart If the layers fluctuate sharply, use a subdivided column chart see Chart 38 or the approach illustrated by Chart The important component—in this case, Model X share—is sandwiched between the two competing models to stress the message.
Like all charts illustrating relationships, this type of chart can be misleading if the percentages are based on absolute amounts that are not fairly stable.
For example, if percent represents a sharply rising total, a decreasing percentage may actually represent an increasing amount. In such cases, there is a special advantage in picturing the absolute amounts in an accompanying chart or table. To emphasize the difference between capacity and orders—instead of their levels, as in this example—an option is to use a deviation chart see Chart 33 with capacity as the baseline and measuring the number of orders below or above capacity.
Chart 59 combines a column chart to show the fluctuation in monthly production with a line chart to show the cumulative sometimes referred to as year-to-date trend since January. Chart 61 is similar to Charts 59 and 60 but, in this case, the line represents the net difference between the gains and losses for each month rather than the cumulative trend.
This technique is often used in management information systems; it leaves space to add monthly performance data, thereby eliminating the need to prepare a new chart each month. Chart 63 is also often seen in management information systems.
On a cumulative basis, the differences between actual and plan usually tend to be small and often fail to focus attention on problem periods. To magnify these differences, it is a good idea to show the percentage variations of actual versus plan, as illustrated in this example.
The pies show the share mix at each point in time, and the line chart shows the changing totals over time. Keep it simple— not more than three components per pie, not more than one trend line, not more than six periods of time.
Note that the ranges across the horizontal scale are equal and discrete. Here, the horizontal scale shows the values lined up against the ticks rather than expressed as groups. Chart 67 combines the step column and step line to compare two distributions in the same chart.
This sort of treatment is especially appropriate for this kind of one-against-all comparison. In this case, some of the overlapping columns are bigger than the background columns without creating confusion see discussion of Charts 19 and Chart 69 is a subdivided histogram that shows, primarily, the distribution of the total number of employees and, secondarily, the components of each salary grade. Here, the salary grade is a shortcut to showing the actual salary ranges.
In this example, it would be expected that the greater the discount offered, the greater the volume sold. The arrow indicates where the expected pattern might fall and highlights the fact that the expected and actual patterns differ widely. Although the dots represent individual transactions, they do not specifically identify the salespersons, since labeling each dot would clutter the chart.
An option for identifying specific salespeople is suggested in the following chart. Using the same data as in the previous chart, it ranks the items by size of discount. If the correlation ran as normally expected, the volume bars would mirror the pattern of discounts.
Say It with Charts: The Executive's Guide to Visual Communication
Here, the dots cluster around the expected pattern pointing out that there is a relationship between increasing prices and declining volume sold. In this example, the bars do not form a mirror image, but instead show a consistent pattern between prices and volume sold. Chart 74 is a grouped dot chart that shows more than one item. To make the distinction between the two items, the chart uses dots and circles; other symbols, such as squares and triangles, can also be used.
On an arithmetic scale, the industry range would become larger as it moved across the chart, since it is usually computed as a constant percentage increase; it would also curve upward, making it difficult to study the relationships. The dots represent the actual salaries of the employees in each grade and their relation to the range. The reason for reevaluating the structure is that most employees are above the midpoint of their range and many are above the maximum.
Chart 77 is a break-even chart that combines a subdivided surface chart to show costs fixed and variable with a line chart to show volume of sales. Although it appears out of place here among the dot charts and paired bar charts, it is used to show the correlation between increasing volume and higher cost.
The vertical bar at the right can be added to identify the components of costs at a specific volume of sales. Placing each business on its own grid is less confusing than placing all three on one grid. More charts? But simpler comparisons per chart.
However, some nonquantitative messages present visual challenges. Among them are images for ideas such as interaction, leverage, obstacles, and interrelationships, as well as images that convey structure, sequence, and process. Sensing this gap, I worked with several talented designers to create the following portfolio of visual images, for use in your reports, presentations, and articles.
They fall into two broad categories: Here are a few suggestions for making the most of them.
In a sense, the visuals are solutions in search of a problem. In isolation, none is right or wrong, good or bad. As you search for a visual solution to a communication problem, you can look at the following images from left to right, or turn the pages around to see what the images reveal from different perspectives.
You can simplify them, expand them, multiply them, or otherwise play with and modify them—in short, mold them to meet your needs. Take a look at these examples. Keep looking, playing with the diagrams, so that you find the right fit.
Plan the project Start up Develop solution Present recommendations Do it! Here, selected from the pages of this chapter, are nine diagrams from which you might choose to visualize the process, depending on which one tells you story best.
By the way, like other visual images, these diagrams will have different meanings for different people. Therefore, I suggest you test the visual with colleagues to be sure that it clearly and easily reveals the concept you intend to convey, making sure that they understand what you want it to show. Have fun.
Architect by training, he was art director with Time Inc. Vera Deutsch is known as well for her graphic design for publications as for her corporate identity programs, which range from the design of mailing labels to the creation of annual reports. Notice that she is the graphic consultant for the design of this book.
Dan Nevins is a freelance cartoonist. Peter Weishar has been a designer, animator and computer artist for 14 years. He is currently a full time professor at the New York University Undergraduate School of Film and Television where he teaches computer animation. For example, as I think about how we produce our charts today, I find it incredible that using my laptop, I can produce this chart in less than 10 minutes. I entered the field of visual communications in the year B.
The chart would go next to a varitype operator. These typewriters had several type fonts, none larger than 11 pt. From there, the chart went to proofreaders, who indicated typos.
The chart went back to the draftsman, who would go over the blue lines with ruling pens and India ink. Then, on to someone who would apply Zip-a-tone: I leave you to imagine how much time all of this took, but it was significantly more than 10 minutes. Along with the time saving benefit of technology comes a degree of sophistication never before available, and along with this, new design challenges. We start with basic onscreen colored visuals and add animation.
With these kinds of animation, you can show the movement of goods in a process, or the flow of responsibility in an organization chart, or the lack of correlation between the size of discount offered and the corresponding unit volume sold.
Also, with digital cameras, you can take the picture you want, import it into the computer, and modify it as you need to. Add sound. How about listening to music to create a mood, or hearing a series of quotes from the sales people explaining the need for promotional material. Add video. Ex pe c ted tt Pa ern Add links. Link to a software program that lets you create on-thespot calculations for alternative scenarios.
Link it to my web site www. All in all, an impressive series of techniques that can contribute significantly to the success of your presentations. As with any new technology, there are pros and cons to be aware of. Because these presentations enable nonlinear branching into content, one presentation can serve multiple audiences in multiple ways.
With little effort, you can start with the recommendations for an audience who will be receptive, or leave the recommendations to the end of the presentation for an audience who may be resistant. For certain, the mix of video, sound, animation, and special effects makes for more engaging communication that can improve retention. On the debit side, the equipment is not nearly as simple to set up as, say, overhead projectors, which require only a single wire plugged into the wall outlet.
Trying to wire the laptop to the LCD projector and both to power sources, turning the equipment on in the right sequence, replicating the image from the laptop to the projector. Unless expertly handled, the constant parade of visuals can limit the interaction so important to business presentations.
This happens because the focus is more on the visuals on the screen than it is on you, the speaker. Depending on the audience, the use of animations, dissolves, wipes, flying arrows, etc. Given the pros and cons of onscreen presentations, here are my recommendations for legibility, color, and special effects that will enable you to make the most of the visuals.
There are some obvious and simple steps you can take that improve legibility. Here, therefore, are specific examples of legibility problems, along with what I would recommend to make them legible. Perhaps these examples will trigger similar thinking with your problem charts. Among the more obvious suggestions are to delete those columns that show no data, or to break the chart horizontally in half, and stack one half above the other.
In this case, the solution is simple: For an onscreen visual, the content can be greatly simplified. Cents per pound will do. A scale will be sufficient to show the relationships. It takes exactly the same amount of time to present five ideas on 1 slide as it does to present 1 idea on each of 5 slides. In this chart, I show the way the information was captured on paper. As you can see, it compares how the two competitors approach the different elements of their respective business systems.
Product Mfg. This series of item comparisons shows that the Tuckahoe plant is doing an excellent job of keeping variable costs low in the manufacture of three out of four products. While it ranks fourth for pearl starch, the cost differential with the lowest-cost plant is small.
However, for corn syrup, the combination of a seventh ranking and a sizable cost differential indicates the need to search for cost-reduction opportunities. However, with 19 plants listed, the plant names and cost figures would still be illegible.
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I should have used a bar chart to be consistent with my advice in the earlier section. In this example, the ranges are the same length, creating an index chart; that is, the spread equals regardless of cost differentials.
The message comes across with one legible—and simple—visual. As you see, it presents the characteristics and demand for four segments of the consumer for market for technology. For the presentation, one solution is to design several visuals: Here we characterized the four quadrants with illustrations that give a personality to each segment.
In this manner, the speaker was able to elaborate in as much or as little detail as the audience needed. There you have several suggestions for improving legibility. Sorry about the sermon. Besides, it usually looks better. Generally, the professionals I work with use a black background so the colors for the visual stand out.
Against the black, they use cool colors such as blue and green. For emphasis, they rely on white and yellow. Work out guidelines with them to ensure legibility while retaining a professional image. Make certain to discuss each visual with the specialist so colors are used not just for decorations, but with a purpose: Company A Company D To emphasize, for example, one component of a pie chart, one segment of a bar or column, a trend line, a row of figures, words such as a title.
To distinguish, for example, actual from projected, one set of bars or columns from another, one trend line from another. B C A Volume Jan. FLY 1. The pie chart appears whole Design Services Manufacturing 2. Since joining the Firm in , Gene has provided creative advice and assistance to the professional staff in the design of visual presentations and written reports, which has included planning the communication strategy; structuring the story line; interpreting data or concepts and recommending the best visual formats in terms of charts, diagrams, etc.
Also, he has designed and led communication training programs throughout the Firm. Say It with Charts Workbook. Read more. Say It with Pictures. Say it with pictures. The Words to Say It. What to Say and How to Say it. Say It Isn't So. Say It Out Loud. Say It in Spanish. Say it in Tibetan. Visual Guide to Xanth.
Why Didn't I Say That?! What to Say and How to Say It. Visual Information Communication. Visual communication research designs. Say It Right the First Time. Say It With Symbols: Making Sense of Symbols. Policing Terrorism, An Executives Guide. An Insider's Guide to Climbing the Charts. What We Say Matters: Practicing Nonviolent Communication.
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The example of above is the percentage of gender for total audience. To make the most of pie charts, do not have more than 6 slices. Select the five most important components and make the rest into other. Pie charts are the least practical of the chart forms and most often misused.
As soon as you need to need to compare the components of more than one total, avoid using a pie chart and switch to a bar chart or column graph. Bar chart Bar Chart: When you compare different items, use a bar chart.
The vertical is used to label and measure different items. In the example above, the bars are measuring the unique number of monthly web visitors from source. You have some choices in how you arrange the bars or items. You could arrange them in alphabetical order, or low to high or high to low best to worst as I did above. Think about what order best stresses the point you want to make and make sure you sort your data in excel the right way.
McKinsey Presentation Tips – Gene Zelazny at Wharton
Use can also use color to reinforce the what the data is telling you or the title of the chart. Zelazny also suggests that the space between the bars be smaller than the size of the bars. The default in Excel is to have thin bars with a lot f space. You can add a scale at the top or numbers at the end of the bars, but not both because it adds clutter. Use the scale if all you want is a quick study of relationships, but use the numbers if they are important to your message.
Sometimes, you might want to use the scale and the one number that needs emphasis. There are variations on the bar chart that you use in Excel, but these are used for complex data sets.
Keep it simple! More in bar charts in excel.Download pdf Say It With Charts: There are no discussion topics on this book yet.
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If the correlation ran as normally expected, the volume bars would mirror the pattern of discounts. The important thing is that you take a critical look to determine what the level of improvement can be.
Chart 33 employs several techniques to distinguish between positive and negative data: Clear Labeling. Step B: Submit Search. They are also the most misused and, worse, the most abused.
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