Painting with Numbers Presenting Financials and Other Numbers So People Will Understand You

ISBN-10: 1118172574
ISBN-13: 9781118172575
Edition: 2012
List price: $50.95
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Description: Painting with Numbers is a thoughtful, yet practical and readable, guide to presenting numerical information effectively. The chapters are divided into two sections:  “Technique” – focuses on how readers and listeners perceive numbers and what they  More...

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Book details

List price: $50.95
Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated
Publication date: 3/19/2012
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 322
Size: 7.25" wide x 10.25" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.936
Language: English

Painting with Numbers is a thoughtful, yet practical and readable, guide to presenting numerical information effectively. The chapters are divided into two sections:  “Technique” – focuses on how readers and listeners perceive numbers and what they look for in reports, describes how reports should be laid out and organized, and provides tips on how to take advantage of the available tools – principally Microsoft Excel – to minimize time spent “beautifying” reports. “Content” – provides thoughts and guidelines on specific types of reports. One chapter alone is devoted to the “Natural P&L”, the statement that is the cornerstone of management financial reporting. Other chapters discuss other reports common to businesses, reports relevant to other walks of our lives, and information that especially lends itself to presentation in graphs rather than tables.

Foreword
Preface
Acknowledgments
Introduction: This Book Is Not About Numbers-Honest!
Being "Literate"
It's What They Think That Matters
What You Were Never Taught
The Ultimate Goal
Some Notes about Reading This Book
The Rules
Numerals Matter
Lining Up the Numbers
The Units of Measure
Precision
Negative Numbers: What Do They Mean?
Looks Matter
The Tabula Rasa Decision
The "Where's Waldo?" Effect
White Space Is Your Friend
…But White Space Is Not Always Your Friend
Time and Other Dimensions: Across or Down?
Borders, Shading, and Other Visual Effects
Comments and Artwork
The "Ransom Note" Effect
Two Truly Helpful Hints
Words Matter
Mean What You Say and Say What You Mean
Choosing between Precision and Presentability
Treating Words Like Numbers
Remember the Title. Please
Your Audience Matters
The Right Amount of Data
Appropriate Emphasis on Critical Information
Consistency
Meaningful and Relevant Numbers
Respect for Your Audience's Time
Wrap-Up For Part I: The Rules
The Tools
You Can Pay Me Now
The Instant Payoff Tips
Instant Payoff Tip #1: Set Up Templates and Styles
Instant Payoff Tip #2: Customize Your Toolbar
Instant Payoff Tip #3: Learn Some Shortcut Keys
Instant Payoff Tip #4: Use Consistent Formats
Instant Payoff Tip #5: Learn to Use Excel as a Database
Instant Payoff Tip #6: Learn to Use the Lookup & Reference Functions
Instant Payoff Tip #7: Organize Data for Easy Computation
Instant Payoff Tip #8: Learn to Use Automated Help
Instant Payoff Tip #9: Don't Learn Too Many Ways to Do the Same Thing
…Or Pay Me Later
The Long-Term Payoff Tips
Long-Term Payoff Tip #1: Use Sensible, Intelligent Filenames and Folder Organization
Long-Term Payoff Tip #2: Use Consistent Formats
Long-Term Payoff Tip #3: Design Intelligent, Intelligible Formulas
Long-Term Payoff Tip #4: Use Named Ranges
Long-Term Payoff Tip #5: Use Named Formulas or Macros
Long-Term Payoff Tip #6: Links: A Force That Can Be Used for Good or Evil
Long-Term Payoff Tip #7: Make Different Types of Cells Visually Distinguishable and Physically Separate
Long-Term Payoff Tip #8: Document Your Work!
Long-Term Payoff Tip #9: Check Your Work!
Long-Term Payoff Tip #10: Avoid Cool New Features
Graphs: The "Cartoons" of Numbers
Why Do People Use Graphs?
Help Your Audience
First, Do No Harm
The Pitfalls of Presentations and PowerPoint
Why Do People Make Fun of Business Presentations?
Real Estate Is a Scarce and Precious Commodity
Help Your Audience
First, Do No Harm
Some Basic Truths That Go Double for Quantation
Wrap-Up for Part II: The Tools
Real Mastery
It's Clear, But Is It Meaningful?
The War of the Adjectives
A Quantation Professional
Relating to Your Audience in a Constructive Way
53…Uh, Is That a Lot?
What Is a Key Indicator?
What Makes a Good Key Indicator?
A Simple Example
How Do You Present Key Indicators Effectively?
A Note on Precision
A Note on Dashboards
The One Report Every Organization Needs
A Sample Natural P&L, and What Makes It a Good One
One Page!
Decision-Focused Line Items
Appropriate Dollar Amounts, Neither Too Big Nor Too Small
Intuitive Organization of the Line Items
Understandable Categories, Meaningful to All Users
Plain-English Terminology
Consistent Look-and-Feel
Key Results Equal to the Corresponding Numbers in the Accounting System (or an Explanation Why Not)
Mapping the Chart of Accounts
Generate a Natural P&L from a Spreadsheet, or from the Accounting System?
Now Let's Talk about the Columns
A Sermon to the Accounting Purists
The Gaps in GAAP
Rules-Based versus Principles-Based
Where Is All This Headed?
"Expensing" Stock Options
Software Revenue Recognition
Typing GAAP to Internal Management Reports
Some Notes on GAAP
What Is GaaP?
Stock Options
Revenue Recognition
Quantation: It's Not Just for Business Anymore
One Taxpayer at a Time
All the Taxpayers at Once
What's Really Going on Here?
Quantation in Ordinary Life
Models
The Meaning of Words
That Quiz I Promised
Wrap-Up
Speaking Truth to Power
My "Tell the Truth" Syllogism
Reason #1 for Telling the Truth: It's the Right Thing to Do
Reason #2: It's in Your Employer's Interest
Reason #3: It's in Your Interest
Reason #4: You Will Get Caught
Reason #5: It's the "Gotcha" of This Book
Don't Be So Smug, You Civil Servants and Elected Officials!
Your Audience Has a Role, Too
Now, What's the First Thing You Do?
My Last, Best Tip
It's Just a Skill
Where We Have Been
Jazz Meets Theology
Revisitation
The Sins of Presentation
The Sins of Behavior
The Deadliest Sin of All
About the Author
Index

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