Training can be a rewarding experience, especially when you can help others learn something new. However, not every training experience goes according to plan. Recently, I had the opportunity to teach a class on how to use dual-axis charts on Tableau, but only one person showed up to the session. I’ve been told such a small turnout has never happened before – there’s a first time for everything! Despite this, I learned a lot about thinking on my feet and adjusting the session as needed.

I immediately ditched my PowerPoint presentation and the lectern.

The session started with an introduction where I introduced myself and my colleague, Veronika, and asked the attendee to introduce themselves and tell us about their Tableau experience. We then learned she was applying for the next Data School intake.

We then went on to explain the three types of charts we would be creating during the session: bars and lines, a lollipop, and a donut chart. The student already had experience creating donut charts, so we dropped that example. For each chart, we provided an example and walked through the steps to recreate it.

Despite the small attendance, the session was a success. The attendee was able to create the charts and understood the concept of using dual-axis charts in Tableau, demonstrated in the 4 exercises we subsequently ran through, which included a stretch exercise combining an area chart with a line chart. For me, the experience was valuable because I learned how to adjust my teaching style on the fly and cater to the needs of a single attendee.

We were also able to talk about the attendee’s data school application and give her feedback on her dashboard.

Training is not just about sharing knowledge, it’s also about adapting to the needs of your audience. Whether you’re training a large group or a single person, it’s important to be patient, understanding, and willing to adjust your approach to ensure that everyone learns something new.



The Data School
Author: The Data School