Excel tip: How to clean duplicate rows

Data is often imperfect. As consultants we know that perfect data is a myth. No matter the organization or website, data is gunky, irregular, and often broken. Was at Starbucks this morning doing my travel and expenses. Went to the American Express website and...

Consulting tips: Excel formatting nit-picks

Every senior manager has a different style. This is one of the hardest parts of being a consultant who rotates on projects. Have to cater to the preferences (some say whims) of managers. That said, some of it is common sense too. I reviewed a presentation today, and...

19 excel modeling tips

This week I coached a new consultant in creating an excel model.  Here are some of the words of advice I gave him.  I wish I knew these pointers 20 years ago. Excel model structure = easy to understand Put all the assumptions, drivers at the top of the page.  This...

Data analysis in 20 minutes

Consultants are in the business of taking messy, unorganized data and turning it into information, and hopefully, some insights. Here is a simple example of excel clean up, and the steps to copy, paste, filter, sort, and cleanse data. For most consultants, the data...

No more excel graphs, Tableau is the future

Tableau. Yes, this is french for Table.  It is also the most user-friendly, powerful, and amazing desktop visualization tool for consultants. Tableau is a company based out of Seattle Washington, founded in 2003 to commercialize work out of Stanford. Fast-forward 10...

Find the data, put it in excel

Does your project require excel? Whatever your project scope, if you are not using excel – to categorize, count, calculate, or correlate things – I would argue that you really don’t have much of a project. It’s my bias, but a project that does...