Dashboard Week is much anticipated event for our cohort DSAU23. Throughout weekdays, participants are tasked with creating a new dashboard each day. This is to be presented first thing the following morning.

A scenario may arise where your mind becomes overwhelmed, hindering your ability to concentrate or plan ahead. From my own experience, I found myself incredibly stressed today, on Day 3. With only a few hours of sleep on the preceding nights and the added pressure to complete the dashboard by day’s end, I felt saturated. As a result, I struggled to think creatively, conduct thorough analyses, or uncover meaningful insights.

There are several factors to consider and adhere to right from Day 1, otherwise the situation could be overwhelming.

Eat well, SleepĀ well

It is of utmost importance. It is crucial to ensure you obtain sufficient rest and maintain a healthy diet for following reasons:

  • Cognitive Function: Proper nutrition and adequate sleep support optimal cognitive function, including concentration, problem solving, and decision-making abilities.
  • Energy Levels: This helps maintain stable energy levels throughout the day.
Time Boxing

Time boxing aids in achieving a dashboard on schedule by providing structured approach to time management.

  • Structured Approach: Time boxing helps you organize your task in a structured way, ensuring that each aspect of the dashboard development is handled carefully and effectively.
  • Focus and Productivity: By allocating specific time limits for each task, it provides focus and productivity, helping developers stay on track and make significant progress without distractions.
Tasks to be considered for Time Boxing:

Data Collection: Allow up to 30 minutes for data collection. Usually, data is provided to you but sometimes you might need to collect data via API or source additional data to support your analysis or story line.

Data Exploration: Allocate another 45 minutes to explore data either using excel or Tableau itself. It helps provide insights and design decisions.

Data Modelling: Give another 30 minutes to create data modelling required for your analysis.

Start Visualizing: By lunch, you should be ready to start analyzing and visualizing your data. Start with building baseline for your story, once you find any insights, narrow it down, try to find cause and effect relationship, and most importantly if there is any, prove that relationship. You should me asking questions like how this particular viz is helping in your story, why it is necessary, and what are the cause and effect etc. Start building your story.

By end of the day, you should have at least raw dashboard or prototype. And give another hour or so to prettify your dashboard.

I am pretty sure if you follow this guideline, by end of the day you will have a tangible dashboard to present for next morning. Now is the perfect opportunity to apply all the knowledge and skills we’ve gained in the past few months. Let’s give it our absolute best effort.


The Data School
Author: The Data School