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A diamond diagram or a segment diagram is a very useful and flexible diagram.  You can use them to illustrate anything that has multiple contributing components.  The powerpointing technique taught in this tutorial is a great one to have in your growing PowerPoint diagramming skill set.

Here are some examples of situations that can be intuitively portrayed using diamond diagrams:

  • Multi-departmental collaboration – Product X’s product launch requires input from Product Development, Marketing, Sales, and Partners
  • Multi-pronged sales strategy – Product X’s go-to-market strategy includes Selling to China, Moving from SMB to Enterprise, Cross-selling with Product Y, Attacking the Financial Vertical, and Attacking the Healthcare Vertical
  • A product’s value proposition – Product X’s value proposition includes Water Conservation, Energy Savings, Durability, Compact Size, and Time Savings.

Now, there’s an incredibly easy way to create a Diamond Diagram in PowerPoint!

First, create a chart in PowerPoint and change the ‘Chart Type’ to ‘Radar Chart.’


Next, modify the chart values.  First, only leave 2 rows of data.  Then, create as many columns as you would like segments.  In our example, we will create a diamond with 5 segments.  For the first row, set all the values to 1.  For the second, set all the values to 2.  UPDATE – The screenshot below is from PowerPoint 2003.  For PowerPoint 2007 and 2010, the datasheet format is vertical–not horizontal (like you see in the image below). Therefore, you must input your values vertically (i.e. 1s and 2s in the same columns, not rows)


Next, change the line color for both of the data lines to black.  Then, format the chart such that you remove the axis labels and set both the major and minor units to 1.

Your chart should now look like this.  We pretty much have it.


I’m going to do some formatting, including replacing the inner section with a Pentagon AutoShape.

There we have it — a quick and easy powerpointing trick to create a Diamond or Segment Diagram using Radar Charts in PowerPoint.

Here are a couple more Diamond Diagrams with a different number of sides:

You can download the above slides from LearnPPT @ http://learnppt.com/downloads/diamonds/

If you are looking a larger variety of Segment Powerpoint templates, pre-built and ready to use, check out the Relationship, Segment, and Network Diagrams PowerPoint Pack:

http://learnppt.com/powerpoint/13_Relationship%2C-Segment%2C-%26-Network-Diagrams.php

Also, you can download a free PowerPoint plugin called Flevy Tools that creates commonly used consulting diagrams here: http://flevy.com/powerpoint-plugin.  Flevy Tools allows you to dynamically generate Gantt Charts, Harvey Ball diagrams, approach diagrams, and other diagrams.  For the time being, it’s a completely free download.

Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations and other powerpointing needs, browse our library here: learnppt.com/powerpoint/.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

A couple more days and we’re done with 2010.  Hope everyone  has had a memorable and successful year.

This year marked the launch of both this blog and its parent PowerPoint resource site, Learn PowerPoint.  This blog post is a recap of all free ppt downloads that have been made available through both of these sources.

Enjoy!

1-19. Free PowerPoint Templates
In 2010, we created 19 PowerPoint templates made available for free downloads.  These have been our most downloaded free PowerPoints and span across a wide array of industries, including medical, technology, and business, to name a few.

Become a PowerPoint Guru book support materials
Become a PowerPoint Guru is a guide around creating effective business presentations using techniques and methodologies developed by consulting firms, like McKinsey, BCG, and Bain.  The focus is very similar to that of this blog, e.g. powerpointing tricks, slide design, PowerPoint chart usages, etc.

  • 21. Download the Basic Toolkit — this is a collection of pre-built, customizable PowerPoint diagrams.  The eBook comes with a much more comprehensive PowerPoint toolkit (which you can preview here).

Miscellaneous PowerPoint Diagrams and PowerPoint Templates
The links below are to pre-built PowerPoints that have largely been created in supported of our blog posts, many from our powerpointing tutorials.

22. Marketing Strategy PowerPoint Templates
Download – http://learnppt.com/downloads/3prongstrategy/
Tutorial – http://powerpointing-templates.com/2010/07/slide-from-scratch-3-prong-marketing-strategy/

23. Funnel Diagrams in PowerPoint
Download – http://learnppt.com/downloads/funnel_diagrams/
Tutorial – http://powerpointing-templates.com/2010/07/how-to-create-a-funnel-diagram-in-powerpoint/

24. Project Charter PowerPoint Template
Download – http://learnppt.com/downloads/project_charter/
Tutorial – http://powerpointing-templates.com/2010/11/the-blueprint-for-projects-success-a-project-charter/

25. PowerPoint Waterfall Chart Diagrams
Download – http://learnppt.com/downloads/waterfallcharts/
Tutorial – http://powerpointing-templates.com/2010/12/powerpointing-how-to-create-a-waterfall-chart-in-powerpoint/

26. Consulting Presentation Framework Template
Download – http://learnppt.com/downloads/sampletemplate/
Tutorial – http://ezinearticles.com/?The-Management-Consulting-Presentation-Framework&id=4423363

Expect more free PowerPoint diagrams and templates to come in 2011.  Thanks for reading!

Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations and other powerpointing needs, browse our library here: learnppt.com/powerpoint/.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

Strategy in business is about winning and so, any successful business needs to have a well defined, executable strategy.  Unsurprisingly, from both sales trends and customer feedback, at learnppt.com, we have found ourselves adding more and more products around this topic of business strategy.

This weekend, I took the time to compile all of our toolkits and frameworks related to business and strategy.  Browse it here:
Business Strategy

Some of the topics discussed you will find include Growth Strategy, Marketing Strategy, and Management Strategy.

Our most recent PowerPoint in this domain teaches you how organizations can inject Creative Thinking into their Strategy Development processes:
Creative Thinking in Strategy Development
This document discusses the 3 enablers to creativity in strategy formulation:

  • Ensuring the right “conditions” are in place
  • Pushing the limits of conventional thinking
  • Leveraging the power of collaborative thinking

Got a request in PowerPoint product of blog post topic?  Leave a comment or shoot me an email.

Cheers!

Read my guest blog post at Kathy Reiffenstein’s blog, “Professionally Speaking…”

A Different Kind of Presentation
http://andnowpresenting.typepad.com/professionally_speaking/2010/12/a-different-kind-of-powerpoint-presentation.html
This article compares 2 types of presentations: the presentation meant as a work product versus the presentation meant to accompany a live speaking event.

Kathy Reiffenstein’s site (And Now Presenting)  and blog (Professionally Speaking…) are great resources for developing the skills needed to be a confident and persuasive speaker.

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Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations, browse our library here: learnppt.com/powerpoint/.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

This is the second tutorial in the “Slide from Scratch” series.  In the first, we walked through an example of creating a 3-Prong Marketing Strategy on a PowerPoint slide.

In evaluating any business function, creating process flows is an inevitable task.  I’m sure you have had to create your fair share of process flows in the past.

The big problem with process flow diagrams is that they often grow to become overly-complicated and therefore, very difficult to interpret.  There are too many lines going everywhere.  Lines are criss crossing (very confusing!).  Boxes aren’t aligned nor similarly sized (creates misdirection around importance of step).


Okay, let’s begin.

The Premise

You need to create a slide illustrating a high-level billing process.  The process begins with the system-triggered invoice generation and ends with a customer service rep resolving a billing inquiry.

Slide Design

These are the simple steps I follow when constructing a process flow from scratch.

Step 1. Swim Lanes

The first step is to define your swim lanes, which are horizontal cross sections of your process flow corresponding to distinct groups that touch the process.  Swim lanes add structure to your flow and are easy for people to understand.

I like to break process flows into 3 swim lanes:

  • System - Capturing automated steps that are performed by a system/software
  • Manual - Capturing manual tasks done by people within the organization
  • External - Capturing any task performed outside of the organization (e.g. 3rd party vendor, customer)

I create my swim lanes using a table in PowerPoint.


Step 2. Add your Steps

Each step is represented with a box.  There are number of standard process flow shapes.  There’s no need to use the standard shapes.  Why?  Simply, most people don’t know what the standard shapes anyway–and  so, using all the official, standard shapes may confuse your audience.  Your goal is to create a process flow diagram that is very intuitive for your audience to understand and digest.

In fact, I recommend using icons that are non-standard, but intuitive, such as the ‘person’ icon to manual nature of an activity.  There are 4 primary shapes/icons that I like to use, as shown in the picture below.


At learnppt.com, we’ve compiled a collection of People & Process Icons that you can use in your process flows.

So, in this step, add all your boxes.  Structure the flow of your steps from the left-to-right, top-to-bottom. Don’t connect anything yet, as you will likely need to re-arrange and re-size your boxes to ensure they all fit on your slide in an easily readable manner.

I like to also add a box on the top right of the slide indicating the frequency of the process (e.g. daily, weekly, or monthly).

Step 3. Add your lines

This is very important — Use the AutoShape Elbow Arrow Connectors to connect your shapes.  Connectors ensure your lines are straight and connected to the centers of shapes.  Most importantly, when you move around boxes, your Connectors remain in tact.  This saves a ton of time as you go through multiple iterations of your process flow.


Sometimes, you Connector won’t connect to the part of the shape you would like it to.  There’s an easy work around to this.  Create a small box to use as your proxy end connection point.  I.e., connect your Connector to this small box and move this box to where you would like the Connector to go.  Then, make the small box disappear by removing its fill color.

Avoid criss crossing at all costs.  If you have a situation where this is impossible, then replace one of the Connector AutoShapes with a Curve (line) AutoShape.

Now, here’s our final product with all the lines added.  You can download this slide/example here.

Add a couple embellishments, and here’s a slightly more refined version.

For more information related to process analysis and optimization, check out the Cost Reduction Toolkit.  This Toolkit takes a detailed look at process improvements across the entire Value Chain of a company (as defined by strategist Michael Porter [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Value_chain]).  Here are other various resources you may be interested in:

You can download a free PowerPoint plugin called Flevy Tools that creates commonly used consulting diagrams here: http://flevy.com/powerpoint-plugin.  Flevy Tools allows you to dynamically generate Gantt Charts, Harvey Ball diagrams, approach diagrams, and other diagrams.  For the time being, it’s a completely free download.

Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.  On my site, you will find information about my recent eBook, Become a PowerPoint Guru, which teaches how to create effective business presentations (from structuring your story to designing your diagrams).

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations, browse Flevy’s library here: https://flevy.com/function/PowerPoint-Templates-ppt.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

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In any corporate engagement, it is invaluable to have clearly defined Project Charter.  This charter helps provide focus and direction.  It is the team’s blueprint for success!

The Project Charter has 5 primary objectives:

  1. Provide an overview summary of the project, including high-level background.
  2. Outline the team’s approach to executing this project.
  3. Aid in selecting participants.
  4. Identify team members, clarifies roles, and their responsibilities.
  5. List specific deliverables and milestones.

To achieve these goals, your typical Charter consists 8 areas:

  • Objectives – Definitely lay out the project’s core objectives that the team is set to accomplish.  These objectives should be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound) where possible.
  • In Scope – State what is in scope.
  • Out of Scope – Equally as important, state what is out of the project’s scope of work.
  • Key Activities — Outline the major steps the team will need to take.
  • Deliverables — Delineate the tangible work products the team will deliver to accomplish its objectives.
  • Sponsor — Specify the executive sponsor member who will be responsible for resolving major issues and provide direction when needed.  Escalation procedures should involve the sponsor.
  • Resources — List the members of the organization that will be supporting the project.  Include external resources, such as hired consultants, if needed.
  • CSFs (Critical Success Factors) — Define the elements which need to be fulfilled in order to realize the deliverables.  These should be quantifiable where possible.  To learn more about defining CSFs, check out this product.  These are also referred to as Key Success Factors.

A PowerPoint template of a Project Charter is displayed below.  It is created by piecing together tables in PowerPoint.  Remember, to resize table edges to the pixel, hold down the ALT key as you drag the edge.

For your inconvenience, you can also download this template from learnppt (http://learnppt.com/downloads/project_charter/).


Along with the Charter, there is usually a detailed Gantt chart that breaks down the Key Activities section of the Charter.  The Gantt chart adds a timing component to each activity and offers a visual illustrating dependencies across activities and work streams.  We have PowerPoint Diagrams Pack with various Gantt charts, calendars, meeting schedules, and other timeline diagrams at learnppt.com as well:
http://learnppt.com/powerpoint/23_Gantt-Charts%2C-Schedules%2C-and-Calendars.php

You can download a free PowerPoint plugin called Flevy Tools that creates Gantt charts, among other commonly used project management diagrams here: http://flevy.com/powerpoint-plugin.  For the time being, it’s a completely free download.

Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.  On my site, you will find information about my recent eBook, Become a PowerPoint Guru, which teaches how to create effective business presentations (from structuring your story to designing your diagrams).

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations, browse our library here: learnppt.com/powerpoint/.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

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The “Crawl Walk Run” approach is a great way for executives to frame and communicate change.  This is particularly useful and most relevant to organizations growing from mid-size to enterprise.

During this transition, organizations need to create scalable processes, implement enterprise-wide systems, and potentially redefine their organizational structure.  When faced with a lot of changes, it is important to prioritize them in a way that an organization can understand and execute against.

To do this, executives often structure changes under the Crawl Walk Run framework, where

  • Crawl changes are immediate quick wins.  They can be implemented easily and lay the groundwork for bigger, more impactful changes down the road.
  • Walk changes are near-term.  These have a longer time frame than the Crawl changes.  These may included process changes, easy IT upgrades, or headcount changes.
  • Run changes are long-term objectives.  In the Run state, an organization will embrace world class leading practices.  These changes may include an ERP implementation, a organizational restructure, or adoption of an outsourcing model.

As one would suspect, there are standard Crawl Walk Run diagrams used in PowerPoint presentations.  On an initial slide, the Crawl Walk Run framework is presented with a high level descriptions capturing each of the Crawl, Walk, and Run stages.  Then, successive slides dive deeper into each stage, breaking down the specific changes and target time frames for completion.


You can find Crawl Walk Run diagrams and templates at LearnPPT.
http://learnppt.com/powerpoint/21_MiniPack—Crawl-Walk-Run.php

There are also many variations to this rudimentary framework to illustrate different levels of change and progress, including:

  • Crawl, Walk, Run, Sprint!
  • Crawl, Walk, Run, Fly!
  • Crawl, Creep, Walk, Run

This article was written by David Tracy.

Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations, browse our library here: learnppt.com/powerpoint/.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

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Creating a linear approach with a distinct start and end is simple.  Just piece  together a number of chevrons.  But, how about a circular approach PowerPoint diagram?

There are a number of ways to do this in PowerPoint.  I’ll teach you the easiest method in this PowerPoint tutorial.

First, let’s gather the shapes.  To create a simple circular approach diagram, you need at least 4 shapes.

  1. A large circle. This will be the outer edge of your diagram.  You need to set both a border color and fill color.
  2. A small circle. This will be the inner of your PowerPoint diagram.  Set the fill color to white.
  3. An arrow. Set the border and fill colors to the same as your larger circle
  4. A line. Set this line’s color to be the same as the diagram’s fill color.

See the diagram below.

Now, let’s piece the shapes together to form the PowerPoint diagram.  See the final creation below to visualize how the pieces fit together.  Remember, to resize a shape to the pixel, hold down the ALT key.

Note how the line is used to cover up the base edge of the arrow AutoShape.  To create additional segments in your diagram, just take the arrow+line (i.e. shapes 3 and 4).  Group them, replicate, rotate, and re-position.  Simple as that.

The downside to this method of creating a circular approach is you cannot highlight a particular segment with a different color.  On learnppt.com, we have a full PowerPoint Diagrams Pack around Circular Approach and Force Diagrams (http://learnppt.com/powerpoint/6_Circular-Approaches-and-Force-Diagrams.php).

Here are some fancier circular approach diagrams.

Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.

You can download a free PowerPoint plugin called Flevy Tools that creates commonly used consulting diagrams here: http://flevy.com/powerpoint-plugin.  Flevy Tools allows you to dynamically generate Gantt Charts, Harvey Ball diagrams, approach diagrams, and other diagrams.  For the time being, it’s a completely free download.

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations, browse our library here: learnppt.com/powerpoint/.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

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Recently, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Geetesh Bajaj at Indezine, where we discussed my PowerPoint book Become a PowerPoint Guru.

You can read the full interview here:
http://blog.indezine.com/2010/07/become-powerpoint-guru-conversation.html

Indezine
http://www.indezine.com/
Indezine is a leading online resource for PowerPoint users. Check it out. You can find articles, tutorials, and templates.

—–

Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations, browse our library here: learnppt.com/powerpoint/.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

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A PowerPoint diagram in the shape of a funnel is both useful and intuitive to understand.  In this entry, I’ll go through a simple way to create a funnel diagram in PowerPoint.

First, let’s gather the shapes.  To create a simple funnel, you only  need 4 shapes:

  1. A large circle. The border (width 2 1/4) is the color of your funnel.  Set the fill color to white.
  2. A downwards triangle. This is the main body of the funnel, so set the color as your funnel color.
  3. A rectangle. Set this color to your funnel color.
  4. A small circle. Also set this color to your funnel color.

See the diagram below.

Now, let’s piece the shapes together to form a funnel.  Attach the large circle to the top of the triangle to form the opening.  The rectangle and small circle form the bottom of the funnel.

See the final creation below.  Note, to resize a shape to the pixel, hold down the ALT key.

There you have it.  A funnel diagram is a great way to illustrate a downsizing/reduction, downselection, filtering down process.  Specific examples include a Flow of Marketing Leads to Sales Leads, Downselection of Vendors, and Product Development from Ideation to R&D.

It’s also very easy to add embellishments to the funnel diagram for a more specific purpose.  See the 2 examples below.

You can download all the funnel diagrams shown in this PowerPoint tutorial here (http://learnppt.com/downloads/funnel_diagrams/).  Enjoy.

Also, you can download a free PowerPoint plugin called Flevy Tools that creates commonly used consulting diagrams here: http://flevy.com/powerpoint-plugin.  Flevy Tools allows you to dynamically generate Gantt Charts, Harvey Ball diagrams, approach diagrams, and other diagrams.  For the time being, it’s a completely free download.

Questions, thoughts, concerns?  Go to my site (learnppt.com) and shoot me an email.

For pre-made PowerPoint diagrams used in business presentations, browse our library here: learnppt.com/powerpoint/.  These diagrams were professionally designed by management consultants. Give your presentations the look and feel of a final product made by McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Booz Allen, Deloitte, or any of the top consulting firms.

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