How to add Dividers to the chart

Most reports and presentations contain a lot of boring charts that describe the state before and after some event, action, etc. However, using simple visual tricks you can shake up the audience and draw an attention to the essence of your presentation.

For example, you want to demonstrate the changes in sales due to the company policy during 2004 - 2005 and 2008 - 2009:

Chart with a Decorative Element in Excel 2003

If you have charts:

Example in Excel 2003

To create one chart with separator, follow these steps:

    1.    Insert a blank row between separated parts of chart (in this example - A13).

    2.    Insert a blank column between columns Day and Sales and enter the formula:

=Year(A4)

Change the format of these cells to Number with zero of decimal places.

    3.    Select the data cells (in this example B4:C22).

    4.    Select Insert -> Chart... to open the Chart Wizard dialog box:

Chart Wizard in Excel 2003

Choose the Column type, the Clustered Column sub-type and then click Next >.

    5.    In the Step 2 of Chart Wizard, check the data and click Next >.

    6.    In the Step 3 of Chart Wizard, in the Titles tab, enter the chart title, in the Gridlines tab, clear the Major gridlines checkbox, hide the legend in the Legend tab, and then click Next >.

    7.    In the Step 4 of Chart Wizard, click the Finish button:

Chart in Excel 2003

    8.    In the source data (B4:B22) clear the duplicate years. As you clear an entry in the worksheet, the corresponding entry along the chart axis disappears.

You can then make any other adjustments to get the look you desire.

Format chart in Excel 2003

    9.    Select the chart. Select Insert -> Picture and choose the type of object what you want to add in the chart.

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