Anyone can create effective visuals. A background in graphics is not needed. This course will show participants how to create visuals such as: clear, effective graphs in Excel or PowerPoint; diagrams that show comparison of value in new ways; and time-based diagrams. Techniques for focusing the audience and breaking down complex tables will also be shown.


This seminar is designed for professionals who use PowerPoint to communicate financial information to others.


Too many financial presentations rely on huge spreadsheets or paragraphs of text copied onto slides. Audiences say these overloaded slides confuse them and executives don’t take action when they are unsure of the message. This seminar will help you create visuals that clearly communicate the message behind the numbers.


  • create graphs that are uncluttered and easy to understand
  • create graphs in either Excel or PowerPoint
  • add labels and other explanatory text to graphs to make the message clear
  • create diagrams that show comparison of values such as proportional shape collections and grouped item comparisons
  • create time-based diagrams to show financial processes or information about when certain financial events occur
  • add callouts to any visual to focus the audience’s attention (and make sure the callout shape or arrow can be seen no matter the background)
  • use builds to focus the attention while you discuss each part of the visual
  • use two methods for drilling down into complex tables so the audience understands your message even when you are forced to show the whole table on a slide (because your boss says you have to)

This is a hands-on seminar. Please bring a laptop with Excel (any version) installed. You should have Office 2007 or higher loaded on a Windows laptop, or Office 2011 or later loaded on a Mac laptop. Bring your laptop, power cord, and external mouse if you prefer that to a trackpad.

This is not an Excel or PowerPoint basics course. You need to come already being familiar with the programs and have intermediate level skills.

To register, visit the CPAAB website here.