# Count the number of blank values in a range in Excel

If you want to count the number of cells with blank values in them, you may think it’s as simple as using the COUNTBLANK() formula. Usually you do this if you want to know how much data is missing in your data set. Say you have a list of 10 students, and if a student […]

# Best practices for data analysts in the medical field

What are some best practices for data analyst working in the medical field? I review this blog post from the Tableau blog by Barry P. Chaiken, MD about the type of analytics used in the medical field, and the trust that must be garnered between the analyst and the physicians. An interesting aspect of doing […]

# The debate over VLOOKUP versus INDEX/MATCH in Excel

Should you use VLOOKUP or INDEX/MATCH in Excel? What are the pros and cons of each method? When you lookup data in Excel, you have the option to use either VLOOKUP or a combination of INDEX and MATCH functions. There is a huge debate over which method to use, and I break down the pros […]

# Developing the 5 soft skills to be a good analyst

This is my take on the a blog post written on the Mode blog: How to Develop the Five Soft Skills That Will Make You a Great Analyst. These soft skills are invaluable for all analysts and as Derek mentions in the blog post, helps you move up in your career. The most important soft […]

# The best ways to learn Excel

What are the best ways to learn Excel? How do I get good at Excel? I’ve been asked this question many times in person or online, and even wrote some answers online. I discuss not only the best ways to learn Excel, but also what the core concepts you should learn to be the most […]

# The pros and cons of using Excel tables

Excel tables are a really powerful feature, but there are pros and cons to the feature depending on if you are an advanced or beginner Excel user. From what I’ve seen, most people who use Excel tables just to get the nice color formatting on the header row and the alternating banded rows color formatting. […]

# Best way to structure data in Excel for PivotTables

PivotTables in Excel are a great way to visualize your data. However, in order to easily query and summarize your data in the PivotTable, you need to properly structure your data set before building the PivotTable. Not only is the practice of streamlining your dataset into fewer columns good for PivotTables for different dimensions, this […]

# Top 5 Excel keyboard shortcuts

What are your favorite Excel keyboard shortcuts? I talk about my top 5 and why I think they are useful for all analysts. The key takeaway is to stop using your mouse or trackpad on your laptop, and commit to learning these keyboard shortcuts to be more efficient and productive in Excel. My #1 Excel […]

# Why Excel’s Copy and Paste Special Values is not a good habit

This is the first episode of Dear Analyst, a podcast about Excel, data analysis, software, and everything in between. In this episode, I talk about the Copy and Paste Special Values feature in Excel, and why it’s not a good habit to get into when it comes to structuring the data in your Excel files. […]