Category Archives for "Outlook 2010"

2 Reader Question: How to double indent faster

It was one of those emails that I knew I’d get sooner or later:

When indenting a paragraph for a quote in a motion for instance, is there a way to indent both the left and right margins of the paragraph using a keyboard shortcut? I seem to recall Ctrl+M in WordPerfect, but don’t know of a built-in shortcut for MS Word.

Yeah, I’ve kind of been bummed about that, too.

The short answer is, no. Word didn’t considerately offer up a built-in shortcut key that’ll automatically indent both the right and left margins for an extended quote. I do not know why. It is a mystery for the ages. (Okay, maybe not quite that dramatic.)

But where Microsoft has failed, you can succeed. Here are three suggestions I had:

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

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/)

Buy a plugin, help a child

I’ve been an admirer of Standss – Outlook Productivity for a while now, but I wasn’t aware of their pro bono work, particularly the project with a children’s hospital. Standss has developed a database to help ensure that children in Fiji affected by Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD) get the antibiotics they need (provided free by the Fiji government) on a regular basis. The database helps track an affected child’s course of treatment by reminding parents that antibiotics are due:

We approached the Children’s Hospital in Suva with the idea of creating a database that allows the hospital to track compliance down to the individual patient level. The aim of the database is to identify children who are not complying with the medical treatment necessary to control the disease. This enables the hospital to identify which patients are missing injections and to intervene early by calling their parents.

The first version of the database has already been developed is currently being trialled at the main Children’s Hospital in Suva. We hope to eventually link this system to mobile phone companies so that parents get reminded of as their children’s appointments (by SMS text) are due. This should further increase compliance while reducing the workload of the overworked nurses and doctors at our hospitals. The data from the database will also be submitted to Government to aid with decision making that will hopefully save unnecessary operations, cost and even lives.

Click here for more information on the project. (You’ll notice, as you scroll down, that these kinds of charitable endeavors are something Standss engages in frequently; other projects including supporting a home for the elderly and helping children with school supplies.)

We’ve spent a lot of time and emotional energy in the United States arguing about health care in recent months, with little to show for it. Here’s an opportunity to support a program that actually seems to be helping children live longer, healthier lives while conserving resources. Find a plugin of theirs that solves your biggest Microsoft Outlook problem and help fund this worthy cause!

Guest Post @ Lawyerist: 4 Ways to Make Outgoing Emails Work Harder

One of the biggest email-related time-sucks is the whole follow-up business. You can’t just send an email out and just mark that task “done.” Oh, no. You have to make sure your recipient actually gets your email, you have to get a response (and the right one at that), you have to do the next task in line, etc.

And even though I covered the whole “flagging emails for follow-up” in excruciating detail here on Legal Office Guru, I’m giving an overview of that and three other related Microsoft Outlook features you’ll want to consider using before hitting that Send button next time.

Click here to read the full article (after 11:11 a.m. CT, which is when the post goes live).

Guest Post @ Lawyerist: Searching Microsoft Outlook with Lookeen

If you’ve ever been frustrated when attempting to search for an email you just know you received (or all the calendar items or tasks that have a particular party’s name in them, etc.), you may appreciate my latest guest post at Lawyerist. It’s a review of Lookeen (version 8), a popular search plug-in for Microsoft Outlook that not only searches Outlook .pst files (a.k.a. where all your Outlook data is stored), but can also be configured to search selected folders on your computer.

Click here to see the full review.

Guest Post @ Lawyerist: How to Customize Your Microsoft Office Ribbon

Hate the Ribbon? You’re not alone. Lots of folks screamed in agony when Microsoft replaced Office’s familiar 2003 menu system with the Ribbon, effective with version 2007. So many people screamed, in fact, that someone even created a plug-in to switch it back.

But not many users know you can actually modify the Ribbon (at least in version 2010 – Ribbon modification in 2007 requires mucho programming). Click here to learn how.

Guest Post @ Lawyerist: Microsoft Outlook Accidents (and How to Fix Them)

Ever hit a wrong button or moved your mouse the wrong way in Microsoft Outlook, only to see something essential disappear? Apparently, it’s a common problem, since I get quite a few distress calls from co-workers saying, “Help! My [fill in the blank] disappeared from my screen!”

In my latest guest post at Lawyerist, I cover some of the most common oopsies I see and how to restore your Outlook to look the way you had it before you did that one-two-switcheroo.

Click here to read the full illustrated article.

1 Reader Question: Cannot custom flag emails

A while back, one Legal Office Guru reader who’d just read my post, Make your Outlook e-mails un-ignorable, was having a curious problem: he couldn’t flag his e-mails. Well, that’s not entirely true. He could right-click on his e-mails and flag them, but he wasn’t getting all of the choices that I outlined in my post. As he described his problem:

I use Outlook 2010 and I like being able to Flag an email for a reminder on a specific day at a specific time. For some reason when I click on the red flag “Follow up” I only have one option “Flag Message” How do I set this up for Custom?

My first response was to do that really annoying thing that help desk people do: I asked him if he was sure he had followed the instructions. Yes, he had. So, the quest was on to figure out where the gap was between my instructions and his experience.
Keep reading →

Guest Post @ Lawyerist: Review of Smart Schedules for Outlook

Have you ever had an event on your calendar — an upcoming trial or a recent case assignment — that you needed to create a bunch of preceding (in the case of the trial) or following (for the case assignment) Tasks and/or Appointments in Outlook? If you could automate the creation and management of those related Tasks and Appointments (ever had a trial continued and had to move a bunch of related deadlines forward by X days?), how much time would that save you?

In my latest guest post on Lawyerist, I review a product called Smart Schedules for Outlook that does just that. You tell Smart Schedules what the triggering date or event is and, based on a template (either Smart Schedules’ delivered templates or one of your own), all the related Tasks and Appointments (or, as they call them, “events”) will be created for you. You can even edit individual Tasks or Appointments without disturbing the “project” (what Smart Schedules calls the set of inter-related events) and assign certain ones to other members of your team.

Click here for the full illustrated review.

2 Guest Post @ Lawyerist: Send SMS Via Email for Faster Responses

The trouble with email these days is that everyone is getting so darn much of it that a lot of it gets ignored. But what if you have an urgent message that needs to be read NOW?

Studies show that, increasingly, the go-to technology for reaching someone quickly and getting a response is SMS (popularly known as a text message). With more and more people constantly connected to the grid via their smartphones, it makes sense: a text message will get attention and response more quickly because of the medium’s built-in immediacy.

The good news is, you don’t have to pick your own cell phone (and incur your carrier’s charges) to send a text message. You can do it via Outlook 2010, which has the advantage of allowing you to keep all your messages (email and text) in one easy-to-search file.

Click here for the full article.

Guest Post @ Lawyerist: Outlook Meeting Request Do’s and Don’t’s

Glad as I am to see more Microsoft Outlook users moving beyond just sending and receiving email, I have a real pet peeve about the way lots of them use another message type, the Meeting Request. If you’ve ever gotten one of those messages that has Accept, Tentative, and Decline across the top, then maybe you have a few pet peeves about Meeting Requests, too.

Over at Lawyerist, I take a stab at establishing an etiquette for using the Meeting Request. Click here and have a read, and let me know in the comments whether you agree or perhaps have a pet peeve of your own to add.

2 Guest Post @ Lawyerist: 5 Microsoft Office Hacks to Finish Tasks Faster

Want to move things from your inbox to your outbox a lot faster? It’s time you upgrade your skills in Microsoft Office to find faster ways of doing common tasks, like:

  • Speed-formatting your text with Styles (it’s a one-click operation!)
  • Using shortcut keys for speed typing
  • Employing templates to speed document creation for common forms
  • Accessing boilerplate text instantly with Quick Parts and AutoText
  • Getting one-click access to commonly used commands with the Quick Access Toolbar

Click here to get your learning on over at Lawyerist.

4 Guest Post @ Lawyerist: 5 Ways to Shrink Your Outlook PST File Size

Lawyerist editor Sam Glover’s tweet about this post made me laugh: “Exchange admins everywhere whisper thanks to @legalofficeguru!” But, hey, Microsoft Exchange admins (the folks who run the software that powers a lot of y’all’s Outlook installations) will be thanking you if you’ll only take heed of my suggestions. You can pare down your Inbox and other Outlook folders without sacrificing anything important. (I promise!)

Click here for all five tips.

Guest Post @ Lawyerist: Managing Outlook Reminders

Ideas for the tutorials on this site and the guest posts I write elsewhere come from a lot of different places. I watch more blogs in my RSS reader than I can count, I’m constantly keeping my ears open for coworkers’ problems, and of course any problems I personally experience with Microsoft Office become post fodder, too.

But by far the richest source of material on the site is e-mail I get from readers.

Take, for example, a fairly lengthy e-mail exchange I had with one reader. Here was a lawyer, trying desperately to keep a handle on deadlines and outstanding work, particularly stuff assigned to others. He’d made a pretty game effort to use Microsoft Outlook to keep track of everything.

And he was drowning in Reminders.

Frankly, it took a while (and a good bit of back-and-forth) before I really started understanding the source of the problem. But his initial question really piqued my interest: “What is the best way to manage reminders in Outlook, and why isn’t there a ‘snooze all’ button, like dismiss all? It is very annoying to get reminders going off all day.”

As we worked through the various aspects of this challenge, I made notes and did little research. The result of all that was not only a (I hope) successful resolution of his problem, but a new guest post over on Lawyerist. That post, Managing Microsoft Outlook Reminders, contains a whole slew of tricks for keeping that Reminders window from driving you completely crazy while still letting it do its job.

Click here for the complete illustrated tutorial. I bet you’ll learn at least one new thing!

Weekly Roundup: Adobe’s way to archive old emails and good news for Ribbon-haters

For our Thanksgiving week Roundup: Adobe shows us how to print both entire batches and selected pdfs from an email portfolio (a great way to archive email for future reference), and if you hate the Microsoft Office Ribbon, you can get rid of it without downgrading your Office Suite.

Keep reading →

Weekly Roundup: Test your typing, frugal speech-to-text alternatives, Gmail in Outlook, and more

In this week’s Roundup of the reading file: a quick (and really fun and challenging) online typing test (how long has it been since you took a typing test?), how to configure Outlook 2010 for your Gmail account, some inexpensive speech-to-text alternatives for those who want to dictate to their PC, yet another reason to use Microsoft Word’s Style feature, and what those little black boxes next to your Microsoft Word text mean, particularly for your document’s pagination.

Keep reading →

Guest Post @ Lawyerist: Outlook Search Folders

I’ve always been one of those people who has umpteen subfolders under her Outlook Inbox. And, up until recently, I just thought that was the way to do things.

A recent study on efficient email practices, however, has convinced me that maybe a lot of the time I’ve spent sorting emails into their little virtual cubbyholes hasn’t been time well spent.

In my latest post on Lawyerist, I explore what this means for all of us Outlook users and, more importantly, show you how to use the Search Folders feature to quickly organize those critical e-mails without spending so much time sorting.

Click here for the full illustrated article.

 

Weekly Roundup: Paste text your way, troubleshoot Outlook, AutoCorrect secrets

From this week’s reading file: Vivian Manning shows us what that little blue line underneath some of your text in Microsoft Word really means, DIY IT Guy shows us how to re-start Microsoft Outlook in troubleshooting mode to save your data (and possibly your sanity), and Susan Harkins has several ways to paste text in Microsoft Word to ensure the least amount of post-paste cleanup (always a good thing, especially when you’re pressed for time editing).

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2 Reader Question Follow-Up: Synchronizing Outlook with SynchPst

You may remember the Reader Question from a few weeks back involving synchronizing Microsoft Outlook information between two computers. I posted a list of possible solutions courtesy of Outlookipedia (and the comments to the post also contained some great suggestions, including using IMAP rather than POP3 email).

I also continued to follow up with this reader behind the scenes to see if I could find a better solution for this dilemma. I’m happy to report we did.

The developers of SynchPst (one of the solutions listed in the Outlookipedia article) contacted me and, after some back-and-forth via emails among the three of us, they consented to allow this reader to try a copy of their software free.

Here’s the reader’s review (edited for length as indicated by the ellipses):

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Weekly Roundup: More Word, Excel and Outlook Tips

This week’s Roundup of the reading file is an embarrassment of riches from the usual suspects: TechRepublic’s take on the most important Microsoft Word skills, how to put time values into Microsoft Excel, Vivian Manning tackles Microsoft Word’s mail merge feature, making it easier to switch between Word documents, and how to share your Microsoft Outlook calendar. Click the “Read More” link for the details. Keep reading →

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