Get My New Book: Advanced Excel Essentials

81ord-D3ajLAdvanced Excel Essentials is the only book for the experienced Excel professional. It goes through the building blocks of advanced development and then applies them to a real-world advanced spreadsheet application. This is not a book for beginners, but rather for professionals who want to take their skills to the next level.

Order Now!

Advanced Excel Essentials has been Published!

Take your Excel skills to the next level!


Advanced Excel Essentials can be purchased through Amazon or through Apress’ website. The eBook will be available soon and can only be ordered on Apress’ website right now. If you’re looking to save a few dollars, Amazon is the way to go. If you use any of the Amazon links provided, I’ll get a very, very small referral fee. On the other hand, if you go through Apress’ site and pay the manufacturer’s retail price, I’ll get a greater royalty. So buy it wherever you want: it’s mox nix to me.

If you’d like to sample before you buy, all book files are available for download on Apress’ website for free. That’s right: you don’t need to purchase the book to download its files. But I’m also releasing Chapters 1 and 3 for free. I’ll provide more details on that soon.

According to Apress, almost all their book sales happen online these days. So I don’t know if you’ll find my book in a bookstore near you. That’s all really up to the distributor. That said, if you do find it on a bookshelf, I’d love to see it. I can’t think of anything more gratifying than finding your own book in a book store. So please take a happy snap with your phone and send me a pick. I would love you forever if you did that.

Finally, for those who previously purchased my ‘Dashboards’ book through Apress’ Alpha program, you are eligible for a free copy of my ‘Essentials’ book for a limited time! Please send me an email with some evidence that you are in the alpha program. I’m not sure yet the format the free book will take. If you’d prefer a pdf over a print book, just let me now and I’ll do what I can.

It feels great to finally get a book out. There are so many things on this blog I start but don’t always finish. I’m sure you’ve noticed it (or maybe not). For instance, I started my manifesto on Hungarian Notation but never wrote the third article in the trilogy. There’s always some tension, perhaps even guilt, about writing for this blog (or for my LinkedIn blog, as I do sometimes) when there’s still a whole book to finish. And there’s Excel.TV, my consulting gig, and a slew of other side projects.

But now, at least, I can say I finished something!

And then I remember I still have to finish the Dashboards book. But I am very close. My second author is someone you know: it’s Purna “Chandoo” Duggirala of Bringing him on to write a few chapters was the best decision I ever made. Especially because my original plan was to write a few chapters on interfacing Access with Excel. Chandoo is now going to write these on PowerPivot, which can interface with Access and do so much more.

Final Thoughts

There are also some significant changes happening to this blog. I’m in the process of relaunching my company as Cambia Factor.

The question becomes what will happen to this blog. Right now I have several blogging outlets. On LinkedIn, for example, I blog about data and consulting in general. I also blog for Excel.TV on stuff that overlaps with this blog. Finally, I also want to start blogging about my consulting experiences in general, and what lessons I’ve learned so far.

I’ll need to decide whether this blog will sit on its own or becomes subsumed into my company’s brand. There is a good case to make in either direction… I welcome your thoughts, dear readers. What do you think?

Book Updates, Info Graphics with Excel, Excel Sumo, and more…


First, the updates. Sorry dear readers I’ve been gone for so long. It’s been, well, two years since I started writing my book. I’m now 450+ pages with still a few more chapters to write. Here’s the thing, my book publisher would like me to finish my book–and rightly so! So that’s been taking up a lot of my time. Indeed, I am bringing on a coauthor to write the last few chapters of the book. That’s all hush-hush for now as we work out the contracting details, but his coming on is probably the best decision I’ve ever made. In fact, I’m kicking myself for not asking earlier.

A Second Book

In the meantime, there is actually a second book in the works. Yes, you heard right. Of those pages and pages of material already written, my editors and I saw a much smaller book that I could be publish in addition to the book I’m currently writing. I don’t have a link for that new, smaller book yet, but it will be called Advanced Excel Essentials. It will comparatively shorter than most Excel books (about 250 pages of content). This book is set to be out this month: 28 October 2014!

I should warn you, while my original book is meant for intermediate-to-advanced audiences, this advanced book is very much for advanced audiences. Furthermore, it’s very much an extension of my contrarian nature you’ve grown to love. For instance, many of you have probably wondered why I advocate against putting procedures in modules. This book provides both justifications and examples…and so much more. Even if you end up reading the entire thing and disagreeing with me, I think you’ll greatly enjoy this book. There’s wry, ironic humor throughout the book as well, but that’s just a bonus.

For those of you who’ve pre-ordered my first book and are still waiting patiently, I’m going to see if I can get my publisher to cut you a deal on this second book. I might be able to swing a few people a free copy. If you’re interested in that–and you’re on the pre-order list or are part of Apress Alpha program–please send me an email and let me know.  (I’m not able to see the list of people who’ve already ordered.) Sorry for the delay of the big book, but we’re really close to finishing it. 


In addition, I’ve been working on a few side projects outside of this blog. One of them you already know about–Excel.TV. Indeed, we just purchased the Excel.TV name (it used to be–so update your links people!), and we’re really excited for what the future holds.

Blog Post on Excel.TV: Info Graphics with Excel


Over at Excel.TV I wrote a new blog post called Info Graphics with Excel. I highly suggest you take a look at that post when you have a free moment.

It might be surprising that I wrote such post given my casual disdain for info graphics. Well, many people asked if they are possible in Excel–and indeed they very much are. My argument is simple: if you’re going to to them, you should do them right. And I provide step-by-step instructions as well as a download file on how I made those lovely info graphics shown above. Plus, you know, maybe something is cracking under my soft exterior, because looking back at that post, I think they were fun to make.

Excel Sumo

Excel Sumo 2014

I am particularly excited to announce Excel Sumo! Excel Sumo is a head-to-head spreadsheet tournament going on from now until November 3rd, 2014. Here’s how it works: you send us a 60-90 second prerecorded video on why your Excel solution (could be a spreadsheet, add-in, tip, etc) deserves to be an Excel Sumo contender. In short: your video must outline the challenge/need, how it works and why their Excel Solution is so powerful, elegant, productive and/or community benefiting. For the winners we have great prizes to give away–including a trip to New York City! So send in your Excel Sumo entry! (It’s FREE to play!)

Upcoming Live Workshops and Courses in Los Angeles and Cincinnati

I have several great training sessions and workshops coming up. If you’re interested in receiving training for your organization, let me know.

Los Angeles, California, August 25-27th

Free wine and beer will be served at both classes!

Get the Picture: Intro to Data Visualization Tools With Microsoft Excel

August 25th, 2014, 7-9pm Whether you’re an account, controller, business analyst, manager, report writer, or IT professional, learning how to further leverage the power of Microsoft Excel and better understand the needs of the business user community can do you good. In this workshop, you’ll find out how to explore Excel’s best built-in data visualization tools that you can start using today – no programming required.


The Art-Science of Excel Dashboards

August 27th, 2014, 7-9pm This informative, hands-on workshop is designed especially for business users of Microsoft Excel. You’ll create stunning, interactive Excel dashboards by leveraging concepts you’ve already mastered in Excel, and learn new formulas and simple macro techniques. We’ll also explore data science concepts and visualization theory with dashboard design best practices.


Cincinnati, Ohio, October 30-31

Analytics in Excel, Two-Day Short Course

This course will introduce intermediate-to-advanced tools in Excel for analytics. We will cover data visualization topics that move beyond the basic charting tools in Excel. Descriptive analytics methods for analyzing data and generating meaningful insights will be covered using PivotTables, PivotCharts and other Excel tools. We will use Excel for predictive analytics by utilizing Excel’s regression tools and other forecasting capabilities.

Registration Here, cost: $595