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Visualizations have finally become a respected language of business. So who better than Harvard Business Review to give you a crash course on how to speak fluent chart.

What is it?

A beginner’s guide to viewing and creating good data viz. Think of it as a much needed, easy to read, manual on how to create compelling charts. Or put another way, a well researched pitch for why every professional should become visually literate, especially when it comes to data visualizations.

Who’s it for?

Any professional that needs to or should use charts as part of their business communication. Since that’s quickly becoming a wide swath of the working population it’s highly likely everyone will find something useful in it, even if you don’t have “data”, “analytics” or “designer” in your job title.

Why Read it?

Thorough but approachable and immediately useful. There’s just enough theory to give you the philosophical and scientific underpinnings of how we see and make meaning from the shapes and colors we misuse in Excel everyday without getting boring. But enough practical advice that you could start improving your charts in a few hours (there’s actually a chapter called “Better Charts in a Couple of Hours”)

Common insights include:

  • The pitfalls of our brains love of making connections and how to design around them
  • How to use color, shape and hierarchy to avoid overwhelming the viewer
  • How to traverse the moral grey area between editing to draw emphasis and editing to manipulate
  • A step by step process on creating good charts

So, Where can I buy it?

Here.

You’re Welcome.

John Oliver on the show speaking at his desk
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