I work with a lot of different groups — government, universities, foundations, nonprofits, for-profits, etc. Every organization has a little bit different communication style… but they all have one thing in common: everyone has reports of one kind or another. I spoke with Alli Torban on her podcast, Data Viz Today to share 3 common reporting hurdles I see and how to overcome them.
I recently had the chance to talk with Emily Mills, who is a professional illustrator and expert in sketchnoting. Emily was a guest speaker in our Report Redesign course. She walked us through the basics of sketchnoting, her career, why hand drawn images stop the scroll, the cool brain science behind sketchnoting, and then led us through some drawing exercises.
A couple years ago, I worked on a report that summarized survey responses from both universities and their students. Even with hundreds of survey responses and dozens of survey questions, we kept the report’s body to just six pages!
How’d we choose which findings to include in the report’s main body?! That can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. It’s much easier to pare down our report’s content when we’ve got appendices to back us up. I’ll walk you through what can – and should- be put into appendices and introduce you to the better version… visual appendices.
“How can I show my audience that 24,000 is a big number??” an evaluator asked me. She’s right; this is challenging. A single number on its own doesn’t tell us anything. Have you heard those (un)professional recommendations like, “Just type the 24,000 in large font so it grabs attention!” or “Add an icon next to the 24,000 to bring it to life!” Sigh. Want to bring numbers to life? We need to compare numbers to something. Here are two suggestions.
When we should follow APA format? When should we not? Earlier this year I sat down with my good friend Deven Wisner about customizing reports for the audience. During this six-minute conversation, we talked about Deven’s current work (he’s a managing partner, professor and student himself!) as well as the advice he gives to his own students.