Today I want to share with you my review of Advanced Excel Essential by Jordan Goldmeier.
I’m not going to lie, when I first received the book my response was – is that it! It’s a short book (about 200 pages), which is quite rare for what would be considered a technical book. Generally, Excel books are quite long; this certainly bucks the trend. It could have been even shorter (for example, page 110 could have been left out completely – if you get the book you’ll see what I mean). But don’t judge this book by its size, to do so would be to overlook the true quality inside.
The sections of the book
The first section of is given over to understanding named ranges, form controls, basic VBA and formula tricks. In isolation, these are things which most intermediate and advanced Excel users will know quite a bit about already. Whilst there are a few tips and tricks in this section, it is the approach which is fundamentally different.
The main focus of the book is teaching core concepts which can be woven together to create advanced excel models and applications. The weaving together of these concepts is covered in the second section. This is where the magic really happens. The techniques from the first section are combined to create an example model which is more robust, more flexible and more understandable than you could ever have conceived at the start.
We are told in the early sections that the most important Excel skill is creativity – this certainly comes through in the text. This is a well thought out approach to using Excel in new ways.
Who is this book for?
If you are an intermediate Excel user, this book will blow your mind. Take it slowly and consider each aspect.
For the advanced Excel user, there may be no new tips/tricks in this book. But I am sure that the framework and approach will be new to you. It’s such an easy read, that it would be easy to rush through it and miss the beauty of it. But hold yourself back and make sure you understand it in detail. In most Excel books you can skip the sections which you think you already know, not with this one. If you skip over a section you will miss something fundamental.
Would I recommend this book – yes, yes, yes! For any intermediate or advanced user, this will take your skills and appreciation of Excel to the next level. The style is relaxed, chatty and even humorous in places (I did tell you it was not a traditional Excel book), it deserves a place on your bookshelf.
If you want to buy a copy yourself you can get it from Amazon here.