Praise What my clients are saying.

“I cannot overstate the value that Ann brought to our working group, as we were launching a pilot program which provided employment and career development services to individuals who were struggling to regain or maintain their stability in almost all areas of their lives. Ann was very sensitive to the needs and challenges of our target population, but was absolutely committed to providing us with the most accurate data and overall “picture” of our program’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as its most meaningful outcome measures. She also demonstrated a unique ability to help everyone in the team recognize and realize that despite differences in perspectives and priorities, we were all striving toward the same goal. I would encourage anyone who wanted a true evaluation of his or her program, to connect with Ann and discover how much she can help you understand what you are trying to do and what you are actually accomplishing.”

“Best webinar I’ve ever participated in.  Really appreciated being able to practice alongside as things were explained.  Liked the small segments, followed by questions answered immediately.  Well done!  I look forward to more from Ann.”

“This was by far the best professional development opportunity I’ve had in the last three years. Thanks so much for the hands-on learning opportunities. I left this workshop feeling that I could immediately implement what I learned, which is rare!”

“Ann did an amazing job. She was engaging and an excellent facilitator. This workshop has inspired a lot of confidence in my ability to visualize data and I would be interested in seeing what Ann would have planned for an intermediate or more advanced workshop on this topic.”

“Really excellent and a totally worthwhile investment of time. Ann’s humor, adaptability to her audience, vast knowledge, creativity and hands-on approach made this one of the best workshops I’ve ever attended.”

“Ann is truly an expert, but there are lots of experts. What makes Ann spectacular is the simplicity of the strategy and tactics she uses in analyzing and visualizing data, the incredible impact that those strategies and techniques deliver, and the way in which she teaches and harnesses simple, everyday graphical tools and tricks to get the job done.”

“This was the best workshop we’ve ever had at our organization.”

“I came into the workshop thinking I already had a good foundation in data visualization but it turns out I still had lots to learn! Thanks for the great tips and for so expertly walking us through the new charts you introduced.”

“Really excellent and a totally worthwhile investment of time. Ann’s humor, adaptability to her audience, vast knowledge, creativity and hands-on approach made this one of the best workhops I’ve ever attended.”

“I really liked having everyone working from the same Excel doc prepared ahead of time so you have all the lessons there after the training. I’ve seen it done so poorly in other trainings where everyone is working from different sets of data and it makes learning anything tangible impossible.”

“One of the most useful things I came away with was to sketch out my options before putting anything into Excel. I had never done that before and it was really helpful to stop and really think about the best way to present the data and having a rough design in mind.”

“Overall I had no idea how to manipulate stacked charts in excel and do lots of things I had previously done in R. This makes things much simpler for my workflow since I often want others to continue updating charts but they don’t have R experience.”

“The pace of the workshop was exactly what I hoped for. You provided just the right amount of lecture-style content, great visuals, and then the hands-on practice that we all need to help us retain all the information you provided. Thank you!!”

“The Excel tutorials were (and will continue to be) fantastic. I love that you have a prepared workbook for attendees to practice with. The ‘before’ and ‘after’ structure is fantastic as well. Also, the links/resources you listed throughout the session were great.”

“This was really wonderful. Please bring Ann back ASAP for a full day (or even 2 day!) workshop. We need it!”

“Just a short note to simply say ‘thank you’ for doing what you do so well! I became acquainted with your work when I attended a workshop last year that you did at the California Wellness Foundation’s grantee conference in LA. Ever since then I have used many of your great resources on your blog as well as attended at least one webinar to improve my dataviz skill set. I am most excited about attending Technology for Data Visualization in June!”

“I just wanted to let you know how pleased I was with staff response from today’s training. Thank you so much. We are very excited to apply everything we’ve learned. I will, for sure, send you before and after reports. We’ll be in touch.”

“I, too, have to say this was an AMAZING webinar… The webinar gave me tips to implement immediately and inspiration to how to change things over time (especially as I become more proficient in creating new charts).”

“I wanted to thank you for the training. It was very helpful for my staff and we have heard nothing but positive remarks about you and the content.”

“I wanted to thank you again for coming sharing your knowledge and resources with our evaluation and ‘data-interested’ community. You are so very generous with your resources and I feel confident that the participants benefited greatly from your ideas and techniques.”

“I want to say thank you for the wonderful workshop you gave in Indy last week. There were so many helpful techniques that I can’t wait to share with my colleagues.”

“Thank you so much for all your work on the charts. They came out looking really great! I really appreciate your commitment to helping us meet our deadline. We are making the presentation to the client next week. We’re so glad to have a professional looking presentation!”

“Just wanted to share with you a few sample graphics (not real data) that I developed using some of the principles I learned from you. I have found them so helpful and honestly look at graphs in a completely different way now.”

“Ann, I have to say, I’ve participated in a lot of webinars, and you did yours impeccably well, in terms of how you explained concepts, paced things, and the examples you included. Well done.”

“My new eval specialist here took your AEA webinar. She’s convinced she’s going to drastically improve all my lame charts now.”

“Ann was amazing! This was one of the best webinars I’ve attended.”

“I don’t know which was best: 1) Your slides, 2) The slides contained in your slides, 3) The presentation. It really was great and I cannot wait to download it from the AEA website and share with other colleagues not at AEA. You set a high bar (but in a good way) for what reporting can and should be and how to achieve it!”

“I did get a lot out of the webinar, but the support materials and videos make all the difference.  And it’s smart and generous of you to give us access to the webinar for review. You are offering something very special. I’m feel pretty skilled with analyzing, interpreting, and presenting data, but I’m going to be able to bump my skill set up to a whole new level with your help.”

“Thanks to you, I am feeling more and more confident about my developing Excel skills!”

“Very helpful. Learned about quite a few options within Excel that, honestly, I had no idea about prior to the training.”

“Thank you very much for the great Excel training. I have received overwhelmingly positive feedback and the staff seems very excited to start applying what they learned to their work. We also appreciate your ability to fit so much material into a few hours.”

“I thought you did a really good job handling… the multiple audiences and the range in skill level of the participants. The datasets were also appropriate examples and we could easily understand the data we were working with so that we could focus on the Excel skills… Great job!”

“I met Ann on Tuesday morning, and already I know that she is incredible. Her workshop for the PLE team at USIP on data visualization was one of the most informative seminars I’ve ever attended. I learned dozens practical skills in only a few hours with her, and I know that our team at USIP will be using her techniques on all our upcoming projects.”

“The Excel tutorials were (and will continue to be) fantastic. I love that you have a prepared workbook for attendees to practice with. The ‘before’ and ‘after’ structure is fantastic as well. Also, the links/resources you listed throughout the session were great.”

“Really enjoying your webinar today and my staff here are getting a lot of benefit from your sessions. I’ve been into this for a while but even I’m getting lots out of it. You are just so good at this and your energy is fantastic. Great pace and very natural.”

“The session was incredible. I am looking forward to a much better program grant report this year J We will be able to communicate our progress and strengths more clearly and help our readers to focus on our message. I’ll send you a copy so that you can see our progress. We really appreciate your time and expertise.”

“Your panel was absolutely fantastic. We sent out a conference survey on Monday and your panel is one that is frequently identified as a highlight. We feel so fortunate that you were able to join us. I’m sure this won’t be the last time we cross paths. In the meantime, I’ll be consulting your PPT deck as my data viz bible!”

“Thank you again for such a great and practical workshop yesterday. I’m happy to report that the Managing Director of our program staff informed me that she used pivot tables for the first time today on a report of our active grants that she pulled from our database. People were really pleased. It was a rare moment when the information shared really did related to all of our different work. We’ve all got a few more tricks up our sleeves.”

“I wanted to send you a follow-up thanks for the session at the Grants Managers Network in March.  After your session, I thought my biggest take-away would be all these amazing tips and tricks about how to ‘get Excel to do what I wanted.’  But as I work through my first data visualization project, I can see that your session’s biggest impact on me is understanding how important prep and planning are… Before taking your session, I planned to just give them exactly what they asked for, assumed I’d be able to make it crystal clear and assumed I could fit it all on one page.  After taking your session, I took a step back and started to think about what they were asking for, who would use it and how they would use it… Once I felt like I had a good handle on the data I would include, I followed your advice and started to sketch my ideas…As I started my next sketch, I realized my ‘crystal clear and all on one page’ idea wasn’t really panning out either.  Because the count and target numbers for each item are so different, there wasn’t enough room for all the data in a small multiples bar chart on one page… I knew I had to use a whole page for each type of item because sometimes a bar for a particular size would have taken up ½ inch on the page and the bar for another size would have taken up 6 inches on the page.  I knew if I shrunk the size of the chart, then those short bars would be almost impossible to see. All of this thinking, planning, sketching and resketching happened before I even opened Excel!  Before your session, I never would have believed it. It was only after thinking through all those variables that I took a crack at it in Excel with some sample data that I copied from the latest summary roll-up sheet.”

“I just wanted to take a minute and thank you for your Data Visualization session at the GMN conference yesterday. Your tips and list of technology resources will be very helpful as I start the process of developing some dashboards and charts related to the ‘money in’ data in our donor database and the ‘money out’ data  in our grants management database. Your session really got me looking at charts differently. In fact, I had to continually remind myself in the session after yours to stop analyzing the design of all the charts in the presentation and just pay attention to what they meant. It jumped out at me so quickly though. If you put together several bar charts showing the number of a variety of answers to a survey question and you have three years showing where 2014 is always the blue bar, we’ll get used to the fact that blue represents 2014. So when you have the next several charts where 2012 is now blue and 2014 is now yellow, I just misread the chart because my brain expected the color pattern to be consistent.  It was such an obvious example of how important something so simple like color choice can be in the design. It really drove home the information in your session. Thanks again for your session. I’m looking forward to using your information and handouts to develop some really informative charts.”

“I wanted to let you know that your article on ‘data placemats’ in New Directions for Evaluation really resonated with how we are approaching our data work! In May we want to analyze the results of our annual community survey in partnership with groups of residents. We have been developing a similar approach (preliminary analysis, then a group discussion, then final analysis and report). Your article gave a framework and vocabulary to describe the process we have been considering.”

“I just took a peek at the electronic resource page you set up for our folks and it looks great! I can’t wait to send this information out to them.? This is tremendously helpful resource, and our evaluators and program directors have a lot to gain from it. I have also heard from several of my colleagues around the state this afternoon related to your presentation this morning – all were very impressed with the information you shared and felt like it was a great use of their time. I am really happy with the blend of theoretical and practical information you provided. It has the potential to be very empowering for our ‘data stewards’ throughout the state. Thank you for the time and energy you have invested in this work. I am optimistic that we’re going to continue to see its positive effects in the future.”

“My students and I are doing a professional development workshop on infographics, graphic design, and data viz today.  We’re going to show your YouTube channel, Twitter feed, blog, etc.  You may get bombarded with new followers and friends on social media today! Thanks for all of the great resources!”

“This is going to go a long way to helping tell our 21 CCLC story even better!”

“I just wanted to thank you for your leading the data visualization workshop yesterday for our CDC fellowship cohort.  I really enjoyed the class and learned a lot about using Excel for data exploration and building data visuals.  I’m especially glad that you walked us through how to do small multiples and the dumbbell plot- both of those will be especially useful on the work that I do in child development.   And now I am finally able add average lines to my graphs without trying to plot it on the y-intercept!  I had been trying to figure that for the longest.”

“I just wanted to send along a quick “thank you!” I have had so much positive feedback from this morning’s meeting. People seem so pleased to have learned such simple and useful skills and I think you all made us think more about when to use visualizations and how to make them of the highest quality.”

“Thanks for the great data visualization call this morning.  I am a designer, but am deeply interested in data visualization.  For example, my grad thesis project was the development of a data comparison platform for nonprofits in a given community. In any case: your guidelines dovetail nicely with how my team reformats charts for our staff.  We’re designers but, unlike the ones you mentioned in your presentation, we can’t stand it when people add icons and clip art and other elements that are nothing but visual noise.  We remove those things.  We also remove shadows, bevels, 3D effects, and unnecessary gradients (and most gradients are unnecessary). It gets even better when people take two sets of related data and use totally different visualization styles.  For example, if you’re comparing demographics from two countries, you shouldn’t use a set of pie charts for one country and a set of iconographic bar graphs for the other; you should probably use the same chart style.  And then you should keep the colors the same for related values (e.g. age slices in a pie chart).  We correct this issue too often. Basically: your guidance should get people improving their charts before they get to us! I also loved your advice that the best software tool is people’s minds.  I get asked every week for advice on a tool to make better charts.  I usually say that people need to plan out their charts more carefully, and then use all of Excel’s features, and that will meet their needs most of the time.”

“Just saying #annkemeryiscoolbecauseyouremakingexcelfriendlier. I appreciate the time and effort you put into your blogs. I stumbled upon it and it resonates with me as I believe many M&E data solutions can be built with Excel and the microsoft suite. Most developing countries will not have access to the specialist software. Due to cost, it is disadvantageous however, from my experience in the public sector I realize that many government departments and agencies are inclined to use the costly solutions rather than realizing the benefits of Excel and investing time into using it to create the same (functional) solutions. Anyway, just sharing some positivity 🙂 and that I’m following you because of your excel ‘passion’ – keep it coming.”

“I don’t know who you are or why you do what you do, but I’M SO GLAD!!!!! In one short video, you helped me figure out how to tabulate and present survey data. I’m very comfortable with Excel so I probably could have figured it out, but I didn’t have to because of you! YOU SAVED ME SO MUCH TIME!!!!! Thank you!”

“I had the good fortune to attend your YNPN session last week. The session was great, and your blog is terrific. Figured we should share the wealth with our readers! Many thanks for providing such great data viz resources and wisdom!”

“Thank you so much for your reply and for the instructions. I want to express how thankful I am to have the opportunity and privilege to have access to your charts and instructions. Fear can be a paralyzing feeling or state by which I am often overwhelmed when dealing with Excel and chart-making. At my new job I was asked to produce some charts from a crazy sketch, and it was really only because of your tutorials and easy explanations that I accomplished the feat. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I am forever appreciative and will continue to be a loyal student of yours.”

“I just want to thank you for your videos. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas. Wishing you a prosperous and peaceful New Year.”

“I have only good things to say about Ann Emery: She is a very skilled evaluator, and a great professional. She has very strong technical skills, and is very comfortable using any tool from the evaluator toolbox. Ann has amazing communication and facilitation skills: I have seen her many times successfully leading group meetings, focus groups, and workshops. She really excels at bringing different stakeholders together, explaining technical concepts to non-technical audiences, and clearly summarizing discussions. Good project management is critical when it comes to successfully implementing an evaluation plan, and this is also an area where Ann’s skills are outstanding. Last but not least, Ann has experience working as an external evaluator, but she also used to work as an internal evaluator for a non-profit organization: This gives her a unique perspective to identify potential challenges, address them early, and design strong and realistic evaluation plans.”

“As someone that has worked in the evaluation field for close to two decades, I can say with all honesty that Ann is well on her way to being one of the most respected and talented evaluators in the United States. Ann has familiarity with several types of evaluation approaches – including quantitative approaches and designs such as random control trials (RCTs) and time series approaches, as well as quantitative approaches such as focus groups, interviews, and case studies. More importantly, Ann understands the human side of evaluation. She knows that an evaluation should never be just about the data; evaluation needs to be about people as well. How people will understand and ultimately use the data is a question that is always on Ann’s mind. This approach, combined with her technical ability as an evaluator to generate high quality data in the most cost-effective method possible, is what makes Ann a very strong evaluator. I offer my highest possible recommendation of Ann Emery’s work, and would encourage anyone that has the opportunity to employ her to do so. I would gladly re-hire her myself in an instant.”

“I just took a webinar taught by Ann Emery. It was fantastic! I learned tools I can use now, with software I have now, to assist the decision-makers at a nonprofit in viewing our internal data in a visually simple but powerful way!”

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