In October 2013, Ann K. Emery presented "How to fool Excel into making (pretty much) any chart you want" at the American Evaluation Association's annual conference in Washington, D.C.
She shared four strategies for communicating data more clearly in Excel:
1) Adjust default settings until charts pass the Squint Test;
2) Create two charts in one;
3) Create invisible sections of charts; and
4) Exploit the stock chart types, for example, by making timelines from stacked bar charts or by making dot plots from scatter plots.
An audio recording of slides 77-94 is available on YouTube here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1hP0yDMRxVc&feature=c4-overview&list=UUu0waUz-GtZzeRQunEHSj_g