Show, don’t tell when communicating financials

Written on Aug 09, 2018

OSCPA staff report

“A picture is worth a thousand words” is about as scientifically accurate as clichés get. And it’s an important principle for financial professionals to keep in mind when they need to share information, said John Sanchez, managing director, FPA Group, LLC.

“90% of the information that’s transmitted to our brains is transmitted visually,” Sanchez said. “And our brains process visual information 60,000 times faster than other information.”

Last year we spoke with Sanchez about using automation in financial planning and analysis. This spring he produced a popular segment for our Advance program on storytelling in data communication. This fall, he will discuss that topic in-depth, as well as how to thrive during times of change at the Cincinnati and Cleveland Accounting shows.

Humans retain information about three times better when it is presented visually, Sanchez said. In the video above – an excerpt from his Advance program presentation – he shares one example of how a simple statistic is made more understandable and memorable through data visualization.

He said financial professionals should learn more about other principles, such as proximity, continuity and context, to ensure they are communicating effectively.

Learn more

Catch John Sanchez this fall when he discusses “Storytelling in Data Communication, and “Thriving During Times of Change.”

Cincinnati Accounting Show | Sept. 26-27
Cleveland Accounting Show | Oct. 17-18

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