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# Questions from Tableau Training

## Questions from Tableau Training: Isolating Rank with Parameters and Calculations

"I have sales information about all 50 states, but I only want to see a single state and how it ranks. Sounds like a table calculation, but there’s a catch. Table calculations in Tableau only compute the calculation on data that is in your view....

## Questions from Tableau Training: Moving Column Headers to the Top of the View

“Tableau is an Excel complement, not an Excel replacement.” Whenever I teach a training class, I make this point multiple times throughout the course. Each tool has its own set of specialties and comparative advantages that should govern usage. Or, put more simply, there are situations...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Conditional Coloring on Sparklines

In the Tableau Desktop III: Advanced course, we teach you how to build sparklines, with the added bonus of using a dual axis to create a circle for the last sales value. This circle highlights that final point on the line, making it slightly easier...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Union File Names as Years

There is an example we do in the Tableau Desktop Intermediate course to look at how to union your data. In the example, we use Tableau’s Union function to append different sheets, labeled as different quarters, from a single Excel file into one long table...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Percent Change from Previous Period on a Map

When asking a recent Tableau class about how they might use Tableau’s mapping features, I had one course member state that a view he currently uses (and is looking to transfer into Tableau) shows the % change in sales from the previous period by either...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Down the Aggregation Rabbit Hole

Every single day, I get emails from former students asking for help with everything from visual best practices to calculated fields. Sometimes the questions are quick while others require more thought. Some may be deceptively simple questions that turn into something more complicated than first thought. What...

## Questions from Tableau Training: How Can I Draw a 45-Degree Angle?

"How can I draw a 45-degree angle in Tableau, starting from the lower left-hand corner of my view and ending in the top-right corner?" This question came from Ece during a Desktop III class in Atlanta, as well as Christa and Erik from a Visual Analytics class in Boston....

## Questions from Tableau Training: Creating a Custom Legend as a Sheet

One of the exercises we often have in class involves plotting shapes on top of a map and sizing by a specific measure. Instead of using Tableau’s default (blue) circle, we use varying colors and shapes. However, regardless of what shape or color we use...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Colouring Specific Columns and Rows in a Crosstab

This question came up from one of the attendees where I was leading a Tableau Workshop and it’s not the first time either! After showing a demo of creating a crosstab, they asked: "Can we colour a specific column or row in a crosstab?" So, here it is...

## Questions from Training: Comparing Metrics for Same Weekday in Previous Year

This is a question that came up in a class I taught to a commercial airline who were looking at their web analytics data, I also taught it in a colleague’s class dealing with car parking at airports: “How can I compare a metric against the same...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Moving Reference Line Labels

This question came from Jerry in a New York City Desktop I class: “How can I change this view so my reference line labels are easier to read?” Great question! I agree – they are kind of tricky to read on the left-hand side of our groups...

## Questions from Tableau Training: How to Use Specific Dimensions in Table Calculations

In a Desktop II: Intermediate course I recently taught, a student asked, “When would I ever need the specific dimensions option with table calculations?” This is a great question! We know that we can utilize the prebuilt options in our table calculation dialog box to...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Top N Highlight Table

While teaching a Desktop I and II Accelerated class last week in Perth, I got an interesting question from a Tableau student named Clint. "Can you make a highlight dynamic so that it will highlight just the top 10 or top 20?" When it comes to Tableau, the...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Using Cross Joins to Solve Active Tickets

This is one of the many questions I get asked as a Tableau Trainer. It may seem straight forward enough, but it isn’t! “Is there a way to work out how many active customers we have at any given time?”  Prepping the Data Most clients have data that...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Dynamic Label Positioning

From a Desktop II Intermediate class in Melbourne, Priyanka asked me the following question: "In my chart, I want to show forecast and actual as a bullet graph. I’d like to label both values at the end of the chart, whether that’s the bar that’s exceeded...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Top Ten Plus N

Today I received another interesting question from Suzanne, a student during a virtual training. "I want to include a specific value in a top ten list, even if it’s not in the top ten." In other words, our goal is to make sure that particularly important values...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Conditional Scope on Tableau Calculations

Here’s a question that came out of a class from one of our other trainers: “Student wants a running sum to restart every time the value drops to zero.” How very interesting – a table calculation with a conditional scope. Let’s tackle this problem. Scope & Direction First, let’s...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Can a Top N Parameter be Nested Within Other Fields?

The latest question from Tableau Training comes from Ryan, who was in a DII: Intermediate course in New York City. "I know I can show top n products with a parameter, but how can I get the top n products nested within other fields?" This is a great...

## Questions from Tableau Training: How Can I Create Custom Color Palettes?

The latest question from Tableau Training comes from Andy, who was in a DII: Intermediate course in Toronto, Ontario. “I need to match the colors on my charts to my company’s style guide. Is there a way specific colors can be chosen rather than the default...

## Questions from Tableau Training: Combining Measures into a Single Line

Time for another question from Tableau Training, this time a question asked by Daniel from a DII: Intermediate course in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: "I want to show my actual sales on a line graph, but I also want to combine that to show budgeted sales after...

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