I am an analyst, and it seems that management is allergic to anything that's not a line graph, and have asked me to put the information into a line graph. Now I have all the information, but it appears incredibly clustered and lacks a coherent comparison.
Now, this information is for executive management, so I need to be able to provide them a quick "layman's" overview of the information. They'll have meetings and such to discuss the details later on, but for this management meeting, they need an easily readable chart that compares each year to the actuals without bogging down the chart with too many points.
Herein lies my problem: there are 4-5 years of data depending on the division, and at least 6 data points per month. Because of the industry, it's a requirement it must be broken down monthly, and all points must be represented on the sheet.
I've experimented with the visuals for this, and the first attempt, when brought to my boss (CFO), was that it's hard to read and distinguish data points. I replaced the real data with dummy data below.
They want the same data in a line graph, but after I did, my boss told me it looked like a toddler with a coloring book, so I can't use this representation.
How can I highlight each point when there are hundreds of individual data points without making it clogged with data?