Changing stubborn opinions with visualizations [case study]
We, analysts take pride in the fact that we tell stories. But what if you have a boss, client or colleague who wouldn’t buy the story?
This is a problem we face often. Let’s say your boss has stubborn opinion about something, like more advertising leads to more sales. You know the data doesn’t support this theory. But how do you change your boss’ mind?
Here is an interesting way, showcased in NY Times recently.
Changing stubborn opinions with visualizations – 3 step process:
Assuming we are talking about ad spend vs. sales example:
- Ask your boss to draw a line that (s)he thinks to be true.
- Then show the line from original data (or observations).
- Tell your boss how accurate / wrong his(her) line is.
This technic can be very persuasive if you make it interactive.
For more on how NY Times implemented it, check out this page:
Your thoughts please:
Here are 2 questions for you:
- How do you change someone’s mind using data?
- How would you implement these concepts in Excel?
Go ahead and share your thoughts in the comments section.
I have a stubborn opinion that only 1% people who read articles on Chandoo.org leave comments. Change my mind. 🙂
My name is Chandoo. Thanks for dropping by. My mission is to make you awesome in Excel & your work. I live in Wellington, New Zealand. When I am not F9ing my formulas, I cycle, cook or play lego with my kids. Know more about me.
Thank you and see you around.
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