Management Reports, Horses and Camels

Design and big groups just don’t work.  There’s the old joke about a camel being a horse that was designed by a committee.  It’s no accident that the most successful aesthetic designs of even the most expensive and complex products normally come down to a handful of people at most.

It’s the same with the fundamentals of report design.  Involve the report customers in specifying the function of the report, but don’t let them crawl over each design element of the report.  If you do, you will end up with something very close to what you have already.

It’s crucial that you have a report designer that understands:

When you find that person, give them a clear brief, ask them to design 2 (at most 3) potential designs and take time to understand the new design.

“If I’d listened to my customers, I’d have given them a faster horse.” – Henry Ford

Horse and Car

Image by Dear Max

This is a guest post by Bernie Smith. If you would like to learn more, Bernie’s web site has a free KPI report. If you would like to guest post on this site, read the guidelines here.


  1. Never thought about it like that before, It does seam that we should get as many measures and metrics as we can in one place.

    Isn’t there some logic in doing that? It gives granularity and removes the need for more questions.

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