Using OneNote to organize my communication plans

onenote-pagelist-blurredI tend to craft a lot of my division-wide email messages in OneNote before I actually mail them out. I do this for 2 reasons:

  1. I like to refer back to the emails I already sent, which is easier to do when I have the emails in one document rather than all over my Outlook sent items or inbox
  2. I often plan out my communications in advance and don’t like having them sitting in draft mode or anywhere near my email until I am ready.

I do the same with blog posts. Some days can generate 3-4 posts and other days I get zip. I try to post one each day, so I plan the extra blog posts out in advance so I can use them on days when I don’t have fresh content.

I use the tip from January 28th post about using OneNote as a Task List to help separate my content.

I was initially using sections to organize my content, but I found having to flip back and forth between sections too cumbersome and I had a hard time finding my content. The search feature works better within a section as well.


Copying a calendar item from SharePoint to your own calendar in Outlook

One question I get asked often is how can I add one event from the SharePoint calendar to my Outlook Calendar.

We are looking into some other options as well, but here is one way: Connect the SharePoint Calendar to your Outlook. View this Sway tutorial for instructions on how to do this.

Once you have connected the Calendar, view the SharePoint Calendar besides your own within Outlook. Drag the event that you want to copy, from the SharePoint Calender over to your own. You don’t need to place it exactly, just drag it over, and it will automatically add itself to the same timeslot as listed on SharePoint.

You can then turn off the view of the SharePoint Calendar by clicking the little checkbox next to the name of the calendar.

Changing the cell movement after Enter (Excel)

o365-excelNormally when you’re using Excel and you hit the Enter key, your cursor moves down to the next row.

Today I was creating a spreadsheet and I needed to fill in data cross a row and into multiple columns, so I needed set my Enter key to move to the right. I knew this was possible, so I used my trusty friend Google to find the answer quickly.

​This tip comes from ExcelTips (Ribbon).

  • Display the Excel Options box by going to the File Tab, then clicking Options.
  • Under the Advanced Tab, the first option has the answer you need.
  • Make sure the “After pressing Enter, move selection” checkbox is checked.
  • You can set the “After pressing Enter, move selection” dropdown to up, down, left or right.
  • Then click OK

When you’re done with your spreadsheet, just go through these steps again to set it to your normal default.

Use the Styles when formatting text in SharePoint

While reviewing the sites ​that were updated by the SPOCKs on Friday, I noticed a common theme, and that’s that formatting was somewhat inconsistent across the sites. Some had Times New Roman, others had larger text, others had incorrect leading.

If you are finding inconsistencies with your text on your page, I suggest you use the styles that are standard with your text boxes. SharePoint comes with a bunch of standard font styles including

  • Paragraph
  • Heading 1
  • Heading 2
  • Heading 3
  • Heading 4
  • Heading 1 Alternate
  • Heading 2 Alternate
  • Heading 3 Alternate
  • Heading 4 Alternate
  • Normal
  • Quote
  • Intense Quote
  • Emphasis
  • Intense Emphasis
  • Reference
  • Intense Reference
  • Accent 1
  • Accent 2

Between all of these styles, you should have enough variation while remaining consistent.

You can find these styles in the FORMAT TEXT tab at the top of the page.

Using Excel to generate a random number

o365-excelComputers are great at randomization, and if I need to randomly select something, I use Excel to help. Excel has a very handy formula called RANDBETWEEN.

The way to use it: type

=RANDBETWEEN(bottom, top)

The smallest integer value that the function will return.

The largest integer value that the function will return.

NOTE: If bottom is a greater than top, the RANDBETWEEN function will return #NUM! error.

You can compare 2 cells using

=RANDBETWEEN(cell1, cell2)
Result: a random number between the number in B2 and the number in B3

Or by using actual numbers, like
Result: a random number (between 1 and 22)

Result: random number   (between 100 and 200)

Result: #NUM!           (because bottom is greater than top)

And yes, it will return the lowest number as well as the largest number in the range.

Using Calendar Groups in Outlook

Using calendar groups lets you create views specific to that group. By grouping “like” calendars, you can merge them into an overlapping calendar or view them side by side, or any combination thereof. Outlook saves the last view you set with the whole group. To view all the calendars in the group at once, and therefore see the last view, click on the checkbox for the whole group.


The magic of the middle mouse button!

The middle mouse button – also known as the scroll wheel – can help you in a couple of ways.

Most people know that you can scroll up and down a page, using the wheel on the mouse, but did you know, that if you click it, a whole new set of features abound.

Quick Scroll

Clicking your middle mouse button in most windows will give you a quick-scroll image and moving the mouse up and down will scroll quite a bit faster than if you moved the scroll wheel with your finger.

In your browser

In your browser, if you click the middle mouse button in the “new tab slot” you create a new tab. (Left clicking will do that too).

In an open tab however, if you click the middle mouse button, it closes the tab without you needing to hunt for the little X.

Task bar

Open and close instances of your applications quickly by using the middle mouse button.

You can also accomplish opening a new instance of an application by right-clicking on the application, and then clicking on the name of the application, but this is much faster.

You can accomplish closing a new instance of an application by hovering your mouse over the application, and clicking the X in the corner of the preview window, or you can click the middle mouse button anywhere in the preview window to close it.

The task bar tip is one I have unknowingly wanted to know since Windows 7 first came out with the “pin to taskbar” feature, trying to replace the Quick Launch toolbar. I like the “pin to taskbar” but creating new instances always perplexed me, which is why I always added the Quick Launch toolbar to my windows taskbar, rather than using the “pin to taskbar” feature.

The magic of the middle mouse button helps me in so many ways, I thought it might help you too.