The ability to present data in a graphical or pictorial format in an attempt to help people understand its significance is known as data visualization skills.

Data visualization skills simply refer to the ability to identify or uncover patterns, correlations and trends etc. that are likely to go unnoticed in text-based data. Today, these skills rely highly upon the utilization of data visualization tools which allow for the display of data in a far more sophisticated manner than excel spreadsheets are capable of. The advancement of technology has allowed for such images to have interactive capabilities as well so that users may drill down into the graphs and charts for further query and analysis.

Why is data visualization important

We fight for the attention of our audience every day. Since human brain is designed such that it processes images much faster than texts, the concept of data visualization has made it easier for us to win this war. It not only helps in grabbing the audience’s attention but also holds it through storytelling.

Data visualization helps in consolidating large and complex data into images that can convey concepts quickly and conveniently. This way areas requiring immediate attention or improvement can be easily identified and complex problems can be quickly addressed by using deign to simplify them. Therefore, undermining the importance of data visualization can result in the organization wasting too much time and efforts on comprehending data and information that may or may not have a solution to problem at hand.

How to improve data visualization skills

Following are some tips that could prove helpful in improving your data visualization skills:

  • Choose visualization wisely. Regardless of what information you are trying to convey or what your desired outcome is, you must nail this decision and choose the most appropriate visualization. Otherwise your audience might not turn out to be as receptive as you would have thought. You need to understand, for instance, that scatterplots are best to use when you attempt to show a relationship between any two quantitative measures, patterns of change are best portrayed with line charts, and so on.
  • Every visualization should answer a specific question. Following this rule is the best possible way to improve one’s data visualization skills. if you want to make sure your beautiful displays produce the desired results, you must ask yourself a few questions such as what problem or question are you attempting to address with that particular visualization and what key learning points do you want to convey. This is a significant step for ensuring the effectiveness of your visualization efforts.
  • Develop a preference for simplicity. Always remember that having the ability to use some amazing design tricks does not mean you have to make your visualization more convoluted for the audience than it probably is already. Try to keep it simple by sticking to the basics and you will be amazed at how engaged your visualization can keep the audience, without confusing them.
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