3 Excel Formula Tips to Increase Productivity

Posted on November 30, 2017 by Angela Nino

  For many of us that live in Excel every day, we get a little giddy to learn about time savers. We search out anything that can help us be more productive. I’ve created macros and templates, but Excel offers many other great opportunities for increasing your efficiency by making it easier to work using formula tips. One way is through using formulas and functions. The three formula or formula-related tips that I think will help dramatically improve your productivity are using the VLOOKUP function, exploring text functions, and copying the results of formulas. VLOOKUP formula tips One of the biggest time wasting activities in Excel is having to look up items manually in a list. The function VLOOKUP in…

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Inking in PowerPoint

Posted on November 7, 2017 by Angela Nino

  Are you familiar with inking in PowerPoint? If you need to make annotations on a slide in a presentation, you need this feature. The tool is located on Review tab in PowerPoint (see Figure 1) and can help out as you prepare a presentation. I’ve even used it to create shapes and designs when I create a PowerPoint deck. Figure 1 Get Started Inking To get access to the inking tool, just click on the Review tab and click the Start Inking button. A new tab will appear called Ink Tools. See the ribbon in Figure 2. Figure 2 The default tool is the pen, but you can quickly switch to the highlighter. Both buttons are located in the…

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Switching between Excel Workbooks

Posted on October 16, 2017 by Angela Nino

When working with one Excel file (called a workbook) at a time, it is pretty easy to stay organized and move around easily. Opening a second Excel file can complicate things a little bit. Trying to move between multiple Excel worksheets can get even more problematic, especially if you need to look back and forth quickly. Then, make it more difficult by moving within the worksheets within the different workbooks. An example of this is when you are working on your budget from the last year or two to create your upcoming budget. If you have worksheets from several departments within each budget file, it can get really confusing. You can have all of the workbooks open but just look…

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Pro Tips for PowerPoint Presentations

Posted on October 6, 2017 by Angela Nino

Picture of a man giving presentation

About a month ago, I sat in on a presentation given by a good friend. She is a whiz at PowerPoint and seems to really “get” what it takes to reach an audience effectively. I am always impressed with her visual slideshows that are simple yet interesting. The slides add to her presentation without taking the focus off of her as the presenter. I asked if I could share some of her tips in a blog post and she agreed. Keep it Simple This is my friend’s greatest strength with PowerPoint. She does not just fill the screen with “stuff”. The presentations that have open space and are not cluttered seem to help us focus better and do not take…

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Effectively Searching and Sorting your Inbox

Posted on September 28, 2017 by Angela Nino

I cannot tell you how many times I have had a client need to pause our one-on-one training session to deal with email. We are usually sitting at their desk and are working with their files. A notification pops up with a new email message they received in their inbox. I have heard: “If I don’t deal with this now, I will forget about it.” “My inbox is taking on a life of its own.” “I’m sorry, I have to answer this now or I’ll lose this message in all of the others clogging my inbox.” “I have to leave this message in my inbox because it is a reminder for me.” Most of the people I train use Microsoft…

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Design Your Own Business Cards with MS Publisher

Posted on September 7, 2017 by Angela Nino

  Are you in need of business cards? There are many places online that offer you the ability to create a discount card. The disadvantage of these web sites is that you cannot do much in the way of customizing. If you want to be able to make your own layout and text, you can design your card using Publisher. You can print the cards yourself or send them to a printer to get a professional look. Choosing Your Card In Publisher, you can choose from a variety of designs, or even create your own from scratch. When you open the Publisher application, click on the “Built-In” templates. This will be under “New” on the left and then two lines…

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Create a Table of Contents in Excel

Posted on August 15, 2017 by Angela Nino

Have you ever had an Excel file with multiple worksheets? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a table of contents on a worksheet with links to each sheet? Many of us would shout, “Yes!”. Unfortunately, Excel cannot do that by itself. But, by creating a macro, you can help Excel create the sheet. The website Computergaga even provides the code. There is one issue with the code, but it is resolved in the comments in their blog. I am providing the corrected code in this post. Save As Macro-Enabled You will want to save the Excel file as a Macro-Enabled Excel file. Just go to File and click on Save As. Change the Save As Type to Excel Macro-Enabled Workbook….

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Exciting Microsoft Apps for Productivity

Posted on July 25, 2017 by Angela Nino

We all know of Microsoft’s Office products, but they are always working on other apps that can help increase your office and home productivity. Sway Sway is an app that helps you tell a story digitally. The initial roll-out has been improved and the current version is user-friendly. Download the app from the Microsoft store. See Figure 1. Figure 1 You can easily add all kinds of multimedia content. My son and I tried it for our own personal use to create a digital presentation. It was quick work to show my son how to use it to creatively design our story. The Microsoft store page shows other ideas, too. See Figure 2. Figure 2 The stories, reports, or presentations…

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Help! The Laptop Ate My Homework

Posted on July 18, 2017 by Angela Nino

Most people have experienced the sheer panic of working on a document, presentation, or other file and then having it disappear. There are several tips that you can implement before or do after losing a document to help recover the item. Set up a Backup If you haven’t lost a file yet, don’t wait for it to happen. Be proactive and set up a backup for your hard drive. There are cloud services, if you want to set it up for automatic syncing with your system. Or, you can use a local backup. Either way, it is well worth the investment of a little time and money to ensure that you can recover a file if it goes missing. Check…

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Create Your Own Family Tree with PowerPoint Templates

Posted on June 22, 2017 by Angela Nino

Genealogy is a fast-growing hobby in the U.S. and across the world. Many of us like to see who our ancestors are and learn our family origins. Several of my own and my husband’s family have had DNA tests to find out their genetic heritage. Once you have that information, even going back just a couple of generations, it is nice to be able to present it in a diagram format. Plugging in all of your information in genealogy software can be more that you want when you start. Using a PowerPoint template with a hierarchy diagram can be a simple solution. Download the Family Tree Template There are many PowerPoint templates available online. One template is set up specifically…

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