Consider learning Python: MyExcelOnline Podcast Top Excel Tips of 2021

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John Michaloudis reserves an annual edition of his MyExcelOnline podcast to a roundup of the top Excel tips and tricks of the year from community leaders. I was happy to again be invited to participate in this podcast.

This year, I chose more of a general piece of advice than specific Excel how-to. In fact, you could even say it’s not a tip about Excel per se, but one closely relating to Excel.

What was it?

Consider learning Python.

Now again, this is not a dictate to drop Excel for Python! That’s rather foolish advice and one that would be weird to have on an Excel podcast. Instead, my points are this:

  • To see Python as just one more tool to use as part of the ever-expanding Microsoft analytics stack (Power BI, Power Platform, etc.)
  • If Python really didn’t have a part to play with these tools, why would it be included in Power BI and likely soon Excel?
  • Try Python out and see if you like it. If you find Power Query is a better fit for your task, that’s all good.
  • If you want to get into more advanced analytics or work programatically with databases, APIs, etc, then Python may be the better choice.

As I happened to state earlier the same day as this podcast came out, I feel like this is a far more generous, honest and realistic suggestion than mandating everyone drop Excel entirely for Python:

What questions do you have about picking up Python as an Excel user? How do you see the relationship between these tools? Or, what is your top Excel tip for 2021? Let me know in the comments.

Thanks again to John Michaloudis for putting this podcast together and for all the featured Excel guests for sharing their knowledge so openly.

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