Friday Challenge Answers – The Boss Says…

I received some great responses from lots of fans.  Thank you so much for all your great comments.  I agree with most and my solution was very similar to Peter R.’s below.  BUT, as always, Peter R. did a much better job with his Excel charts than my solution (so I won’t bore you with mine).  Without further ado, here is the summary and details to everyone’s answers:


If you missed the challenge, stop now and go here to check it out Smile

Friday Challenge – The Boss Says “Can you create some graphs?”




1) All people thought that not enough testing was completed.  We NEED more testing!

2) Since our audience are the company executives, averages are best to show in this case instead of details of each test.


Specific Questions

1) What would you conclude about the Version 3 fixes you implemented?

Speed is improving


2) What charts / graphs would you send the boss?

Conditional Formatted Averages

Bullet Charts

Line chart with Average Line and Error Bars


3) Now that you have charts, what do you conclude about your version 3 fixes?

Page 4 and 5 speeds are getting worse.

Page 1, 6, 10 and 12 are seeing the improvements.



Individual Answers

(Once again, thank you all for your responses.  Great comments and examples!)



Jake stated: “Speed has increased to be 18% faster from version 1 to version 3. There is still room for improvement.”



Don stated:

“First, as a board member, I would ask why only two tests on Versions 1 and 3 and six tests on Version 2?

This makes showing three separate charts, with different amounts,  too confusing.

I have reported to a large number of the boards, and with this kind of data, I would stick with high level information, not details.

That is why I went with averages.

The bottom table tells the story.

Version 1 is marginally better than Version 2, and both

Versions 1 and 2 are much better than version 3.”


Don Speed Test

Here are some postings that will help you learn more about using conditional formatting in your Excel Dashboards:

The Tricks to Writing a Conditional Formatting Rule Formula

How-to Make a Non-Chart Excel Dashboard Chart (Heat Index)

How-to Make a Dynamic Hotel Ballroom Occupancy Chart

Friday Challenge Answers – Graph Increase at Time Interval

How-to Make a Dynamic Hotel Ballroom Occupancy Chart


Peter R.

Peter Stated: “Here is the short synopsis:  They did not do enough testing.  Versions 1 and 3 only had 2 test runs.  Version 2 was probably tested enough, but the others were not.  Overall, Version 3 appears a  little better, however, I think there need to be more testing.

The chart allows you to select which Version you would like to highlight and shows how it compares to the other 2.”image

Here are some postings that will help you learn more about using picklists in your Excel Dashboard charts and graphs:

How-to Create Dynamic Excel Dashboards Using Picklists

How-to Make an Excel PickList Chart for Multi Years by Month

Friday Challenge Submissions: Change Chart from Amount to Percent From a Picklist

How-to Create Dynamic Excel Dashboards Using Picklists

Change Chart from Amount to Percent using a Drop Down List

Creating Pick Lists in Excel for your Dynamic Dashboard



Piotr (Peter from Poland)

Peter created an awesome panel chart using a line chart, an average line and error bars to show an impressive amount of data.  Thanks for your first submission Piotr.  It looks great!!!


You can learn more about some of these techniques here:

Error Bars:

Double Helix DNA Strand Excel Chart


Another Reason to Avoid 3-D Charts in Excel

Average Lines:

How-to Create a Dynamic Banding on an Excel Line Chart


How-to Create Sales Quota Threshold Horizontal Lines in an Excel Column Chart

Friday Challenge – Analyzing Attendance Records with Six Sigma Charts

Panel Chart:

How-to Make a Wall Street Journal Horizontal Panel Chart in Excel


Free Excel Sample File Downloads





Thanks to everyone that sent me submissions!  It is always a treat seeing how everyone tackles the same data as there is no right answer.  We all can learn so much from each other.  Thanks again!!!