# Waterfall Chart Basics - Working with Positive Numbers - Part 2

**By:** Taylor Croonquist

Explore Waterfall Chart Basics, learn how to work with positive numbers.

**Add Your Ratings!:**

## Inserting a Stacked Column Chart:

Follow these steps to get started:

- Inserting a Chart
**:**From the**Insert**tab (highlighted in red), select the**Chart**button (highlighted in blue), as shown in**Figure 1**below.

**Figure 1:**Select the Chart button **Selecting the Stacked Column Chart:**From within the**Insert Chart**dialog box, select the**Stacked Column**Chart (this is what we will manipulate to create the Waterfall Chart), which inserts the chart onto your slide and opens up an Excel spreadsheet.

**Figure 2:**Select Stacked Column Chart

**Note:**Be sure to select the**Stacked Column**chart, and not the**100% Stacked Column**chart.

## Setting up the Numbers:

The most important step to building a Waterfall Chart is setting up the numbers in Excel correctly. Throughout this tutorial, I will use the below data points to create the Waterfall Chart (see **Figure 3**).

**Figure 3:** Data points to create the Waterfall Chart

**Prepping the Spreadsheet:**With the above data inserted into the Excel spreadsheet starting at cell A8, the first step is to calculate the three data points we need for the Waterfall Chart; what I will refer to as the**Base**, the**Value**and the**Total**(see**Figure 4**below). I recommend always calculating them to the right of your original data points.

**Figure 4:**Calculate the data points

**Note:**I've formatted the first and last numbers in the**Base**column (D10 and D14) with a grey fill, and hardcoded the number 0 into each cell. Whenever building Waterfall Charts, the first, last and any in-between sub-totals, always need to start with a base value of zero.**Calculating the Value:**Let's continue with the first row of information for our Waterfall Chart. We want to make the**Value**equal to our original number, so in cell E10, type in the formula "=B10" as shown in**Figure 5**below.

**Figure 5:**In cell E10, type in the formula "=B10"**Calculating the Total:**For the**Total**, we simply want to add up the**Base**and the**Value**. So in cell F10, type the formula "=E10 + D10" as shown in**Figure 6**below.

**Figure 6:**Adding the**Base**and the**Value****Filling in the Values and Totals:**With the**Value**and**Total**calculated for the first row, we can then fill in the rest of the**Values**and**Totals**. So selecting the first two cells, E10 and F10, copy the formula down to row 14. You can do this by selecting the small square in the lower right-hand corner and dragging it down to F14 (see**Figure 7**).

**Figure 7:**Copy the formula down to row 14**Calculating the 'Base':**For the remaining**Base**numbers, we want to make them each equal to the previous data point's**Total**. So select cells D11 through D13, and type in the formula "=F10".

**Figure 8:**Select cells D11 through D13

And then holding the**Ctrl**key down, hit**Enter**, to input the formula into all of the selected cells, as shown in**Figure 9**, below.

Hold Ctrl and hit Enter

Figure 9:

Bringing the Information Into Our Chart | Continued on Page 3