The definitive guide to Managing the Numbers
The definitive guide to Managing the Numbers
The definitive guide to Managing the NumbersThe definitive guide to Managing the Numbers

Chapter 4 – The Financial Wizard’s Toolbox

‘Should I refuse a good dinner simply because I do not understand the process of digestion?’
Oliver Heaviside (when criticized for using numerical techniques without understanding how they worked)

Overview

This chapter is about spreadsheets. It is intended mainly as an introduction for novices. Nevertheless, if you can do the things in this chapter, you will be able to do everything in this book, and possibly everything that you ever need to do with these electronic helpers. Probably, 90% of us use 10% of their features, and frankly this is usually more than enough. Spreadsheets have a gazillion amazing features, many of them of interest to only the most dedicated propeller heads. Moreover, there are many ways of achieving the same results and you can use what you do know to get the answers you need, even if you are neglecting some advanced techniques for doing the same thing. However, if there is one important message to take away from this chapter, it is probably use the online Help.

Mastering spreadsheet basics

After reading this chapter, you should be able to answer the following questions:

  • What is the concept of a spreadsheet?
  • How do you save and print spreadsheets?
  • How do you create well-formatted tables?
  • How do you produce first-class reports by copying spreadsheet tables into Word documents?
  • How do you dynamically-link spreadsheet tables and charts to Word documents?
  • How do you create intelligent spreadsheets?
  • How do you use arithmetic and built-in formulas in a spreadsheet?
  • How do you use brackets to control the order in which spreadsheets perform calculations?
  • How can you use a spreadsheet to help you manage lists?
  • How do you sort and find data?
The Definitive Guide to Managing the Numbers