Businesses of all types and sizes use Microsoft Outlook. It’s a powerful tool that you can use to manage many different email accounts, calendars, contact lists, and task lists.
If you use Outlook, you’ll like these popular tips that we included in our latest Webinar to increase the effectiveness of your messages.
Before we dive in, I want you to know that I’m using Microsoft Outlook in the Microsoft Office 365 Suite. This means I’m using the very latest versions of Outlook (2019) and Exchange. If you’re using older versions, some of the tips I’ll be explaining here may not work for you. You should always consider upgrading your Microsoft software to the latest version to get the most benefit from it.
To keep this as brief as possible, we’ll be going over the three main topics below.
Outlook 101: Don’t Be a Slacker
Outlook 201: Stay Organized
Outlook 301: The Cool Stuff
Outlook 101: Don’t Be A Slacker
Never Miss a Reminder. Don’t miss a meeting. Don’t even be late for a meeting. You can set reminders for yourself. Outlook will post reminder pop-ups over your email or calendar to let you know that a scheduled event is about to start.
And, if you don’t want to see reminders for events in the past, you can set Outlook to automatically dismiss reminders for past events. For example, if you’re out of the office on vacation for a week, you may not want to see reminders for the meetings you missed while you were away.
Don’t Be Distracted. All of the emails you get throughout the day can pop up on your screen and distract you. These distractions prevent you from staying present in your work and focused. You can fix this in Outlook.
Delay Your Delivery. You can delay the delivery of an email. For example, perhaps you’re up at 4 am working and you don’t want your message to go out until the recipient arrives at the office at 8 am. Or you don’t want your email to go out until you have a conversation with your team. You can set the delivery of your message for a later time.
Outlook 201: Stay Organized
Avoid the Clutter of Unread Messages. You may have subscribed to a number of newsletters, and if you’re not careful, they can really pile up. It can be a challenge to find other emails with so much clutter.
The first thing you can do is mark messages as deleted when they are read. You can also go into your mail folders and mark messages as read or unread. Hit “Control A” to automatically select all items in that folder. Then right click, and you’ll get the option to mark them as read. You can also mark messages in your Reading Pane as read or unread.
Use Multiple Screens & Multiple Outlooks. To enable this and prevent a lot of back and forth between screens, you can run multiple incidences of Outlook at the same time. This is great if you have more than one computer screen.
While you’re in Outlook, go to your Toolbar and Right Click. Go to Outlook, and relaunch it. Now you have two instances of Outlook open; perhaps one in Email and the other in Calendar so you can work with both at the same time. You can drag one or the other to your second screen.
Do Your Spring Cleaning Folders Style. If you’re like me, you may have a 20-email thread in your mail folder. Here’s what you can do. Go to “Clean up folder.” You have settings here to choose from. Outlook can take email chains and move them into a single thread, as opposed to having many different emails with the same topic.
Out 301: The Cool Stuff
Use Your Ears. If you’re trying to do a number of things at once, a cool thing to do is have Microsoft read your emails to you. This is present in the latest versions of Outlook. Once you do this, you can click “Read Aloud” when your email is open, and Microsoft will read your message to you.
Don’t Let Time Zones Confuse You. If you have teams all over the country or world, there are a few tips you’ll want to know. Microsoft uses a Universal Time Zone.
You can change your time zone manually.
You can add multiple time zones into Outlook.
You can show other time zones, such as Eastern, Pacific, and Arizona.
Use Phrases For Dates. In the “Start Time” block you can type things like: “the first Friday in September,” and Outlook will automatically put in the date. Pretty cool, huh?
That’s it. Have any questions? For a demonstration to learn how to set up these Tips & Tricks in Microsoft Outlook Check Out the Webinar Below.