Legal Office Guru header image

Legal Office Guru

≡ Menu

Get the "Best of Legal Office Guru" weekly!

Every week, I’ll drop the 24 most popular Legal Office Guru posts into your inbox to help you do your job faster and easier. Like these:

  • Fixing funky text spacing in Word
  • Making your Outlook emails un-ignorable
  • Autonumbering discovery requests … in five keystrokes!
  • Using and formatting a Table of Authorities or Table of Contents
  • Setting tabs without tearing your hair out
  • Using Sections to customize headers, footers and page numbers

Subscribe TODAY and I’ll send you my free 22 page Fast Formatting Fixes report with my top tips on fixing funky formatting in Word!

The 6 Best Reasons to Use Styles

lawyerist-podcast-logo-300

I had a good conversation with Sam Glover on the Lawyerist podcast recently about stuff I wish lawyers knew about Microsoft Office. It was a chance to say some things about how well (read: badly) many law offices use Microsoft Office.

One of those items on my ideal law firm training agenda was Styles. Sam and I are pretty much in agreement on why Styles is an essential Word skill. It’s so baked in, you can’t possible NOT use Styles, but very few Word users in my experience really use that feature well.

That part of the conversation was going pretty well. Then, at around the 13:08 mark, Sam asked me, “What’s the number one reason that lawyers ought to use Styles?”

And I froze. Then I mumbled something about getting all your level-three headings to update all at once.

Disaster.

So, because I can do a do-over on my own blog, here are six reasons I think you really ought to up your Styles game sooner than later.

[click to continue…]

Learn how to use email better and fix your Word line spacing

exclamation-240

Just because I haven’t posted here in a couple of weeks (longer?) doesn’t mean I haven’t been busy! Here are some tips I’ve posted elsewhere on the interwebs recently:

Declutter Your Inbox — Six experts (and I) share our top tips on keeping your email inbox sane. We each weigh in on Inbox Zero and share our best practices on dealing with the influx of daily messages. Click here to read what Lee Rosen of Divorce Discourse, Heidi Alexander of the Massachusetts Law Office Management Assistance Program (MassLOMAP), Catherine Sanders Reach (Director, Law Practice Management and Technology, for the Chicago Bar Association), Mark Rosch and Carole Levitt of Internet for Lawyers, Nora Regis (Trainer & Coordinator, Law Practice Management and Technology, for the Chicago Bar Association) and I have to say about how we optimize our email.

Fixing Your #@(*$#)$( Single-Spacing in Microsoft Word — Confession: I swear at Microsoft Office occasionally. And one of the things that frustrates me the most is a setting that Microsoft (in its not-so-infinite wisdom) re-set in recent versions of Word. Lawyerist recently re-published this article I wrote for them back in 2013 because, well, people are still wondering why their single-spacing looks a little off. Click here to find out why and how to fix it … permanently.

The “I’m SO not a computer person” guide to computer security

computer-security-upgrade-cover-shop-300x388

Computer security used to be something you left up to professionals. You know, you hire an IT guy or gal, and they take care of securing everything for you.

That was back in the day when your boss provided all your technology. You used a computer someone else owned hooked up to someone else’s network, then went home to watch a TV that had a tube in it. Those days are over.

They’re over because you’re bringing your own smartphone and/or tablet to work and toting a laptop home and using the now ubiquitous “cloud”. Welcome to the age of BYOD.

All this means you need to take more responsibility for securing your data, especially if you have an ethical responsibility for client data (which, if you’re a legal professional, you do).

Fortunately, data security is not as daunting as it sounds, especially when someone like Sam Glover at Lawyerist breaks it down for you in his new guide, 4-Step Security Upgrade.

And when I say Sam “breaks it down”, I mean it. This 35-page guide shows you how to do the essential stuff in under an hour, including:

  • Encrypting the files on your hard drive (I didn’t know it was that easy)
  • Surfing safely on wi-fi (if you don’t know what “sniffing packets” is, then I suggest you don’t go to Starbucks again until you do)
  • Using two-factor identification for logging into key accounts (these days, you need more than a password to be safe)
  • Managing your passwords (that’s plural, people — do NOT use one password all over the flippin’ Internet!)

Lawyerist’s 4-Step Security Upgrade is a critical investment in peace of mind — yours and your clients’. Click here to check it out.
(No, I don’t make any money off this. Sam’s a friend, and this is a good resource. I did, however, get a free review copy.)

Did you miss these Outlook tips on Attorney at Work and Lawyerist?

exclamation-240

If you’re not following my social media feeds on Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+, you might have missed a whole bunch of Outlook tips I’ve published recently at Attorney at Work and Lawyerist. Here are links to each article:

The 4 Most Dangerous Features in Outlook. Convenience can sometimes be dangerous, especially in a legal context. In this two-article series for Attorney at Work, I show you four features you need to either disable or (at least) use very, very carefully. Click here for Part 1 and click here for Part 2.

3 Microsoft Outlook Quick Tricks. Lawyerist recently re-published an article I did for them a while back about three Outlook features you probably didn’t know existed. Learn how to automatically organize emails into conversations for easier reading, how to re-direct email replies to your assistant or someone else, and how to get Outlook to calculate due dates by clicking here.

How to Fight Inbox Overload with Outlook. We’ve all got inboxes that are full to overflowing. In my newest post at Lawyerist, I’ve got a detailed, illustrated tutorial (with 22 screen shots!) on how to use Rules and Quick Steps to automatically deal with routine emails so you can concentrate on what’s critical. Click here to learn these time-saving techniques.

(photo credit: simiezzz via Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/simiezzz/1070601182/)

The 4 Biggest Time-Saving Microsoft Word Features You’re Probably Not Using

Work smarter not harder

Learning Microsoft Word can seem a daunting task. So many features! Where’s the best place to start?

If you want to boost your productivity in Microsoft Word fast, you really need to master these four features first. Learning how to leverage these can shave seconds or even minutes off repetitive daily tasks, which adds up to getting more work done daily (or even leaving the office at a decent hour!).

Here are the four best areas for you to spend a little self-education time, before you’re subjected to one of those legal technology audits you keep hearing about.

Click here to find out what these features are …