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Admit it: sometimes you need help with Office. If you didn't, you wouldn't be reading this. (Then again, maybe you would. Maybe you just like to stop by and visit old Crabby every day. Or maybe you’re here by accident and have no idea how you got here. Either way—you’re getting help today whether you like it or not.)
There truly are a variety of ways of getting answers to your burning Office questions and today I’m going to point you toward them. But the thing is, people, you've got to USE these resources; they’re here for YOU.
So if you've ever pounded the you-know-what out of your mouse in frustration, follow me as I go through my top five ways of getting help—and then I'll pop in five more, because I can and because they exist.
If you read last week's two posts about fonts—Fonts I: The families and their styles and Traveling and tails: Best practices—you should be pretty up-to-speed about 1) some font terminology (families, styles, tails); 2) how to travel successfully with fonts (a BIG issue among my readers, apparently); and 3) what you have to consider with your audience and the tone to project when choosing a font for your email, presentation, document—whatever. You wouldn't wear your sweaty workout clothes to work, would you? (Oh wait; I've seen that on the Microsoft campus WAY too often. An unspoken "no dress code" is often abused, in my crabby esteem. But never mind; let's plough/plow ahead.)
And now it's all led up to this:
1. GET more fonts!2. Make your own fonts!
Now that you understand some of the basics of fonts, let's take a crack at some basic font etiquette and practices:
— How to make sure your fonts travel with you
— Print or screen: Choosing the right font for the job
— Consider your audience: Cautions about going overboard
Welcome to my first post about fonts, those indispensable tyepface-y things that you need to make decisions about every day (which one for THIS doc; which one for THAT email; for whom, how big, how small, how readable, how...etc.).
Today we'll go over some basics about fonts and then, in the next post or two, we'll get into some of the more juicy topics like where and how to get more fonts (because you can never have enough), the difference between the various types of them, and even how to create your very own font. (Speaking of which, I recently read that schools in 41 states will no longer be teaching cursive handwriting. How can this be? My third grade, left-handed, nearly indecipherable, scrawl is priceless!)
Nevertheless, we're talking about typing today, not writing. Let's go font it up.
It's come to my attention that some of you (who shall remain nameless thanks to my own sense of restraint and corporate responsibility) have been left behind in the world of computing. Let's just assume—for the time it takes to read this post—that it's not your fault. In fact, I think I know why so many of you have been reticent to jump in there and start mail merging and frolicking in the task pane: You have no clue what these things are or how they can give you a better life—or at least free up some of your time.
Yes, today is April 1st, and this post is my light-hearted attempt to get you gardeners excited about using various Office programs to plan, plot, and perfect your garden. And it's true. Really!
Let's talk about the workplace and its influence over your work style, your worklife, your outside of work (space) life, and even your psyche.
I'm riffing on this today (literally, just riffin') because earlier this week I had a really interesting and illuminating conversation with a fellow named Tom in Seattle who is an "executive coach" and who is going to write a guest post for me in mid-April. (Since he'll be introducing himself and telling us what he does and why it relates to this blog at all, I don't want to give you his info quite yet; I'll let him do that in his post in the manner in which he wants.)
But today I do want to talk about the workplace in general: how it affects all of us and how we can make things better by changing the paradigm—slowly, yes, but surely.
At the beginning of the year, I wrote a blog post called What's up with those wacky keyboard keys? In it, I answered a question from a lady named Barbara in Cape Cod ("The Cod" some friends of mine who used to live there call it) about some of the keys on her keyboard that mystified (read: annoyed) her: SysRq, PrtScn, and ScrLk.
Apparently SOME of you, whom I'm reticent to name (Keith and Rayney), wrote in to ask basically this question: When they were in Excel, why were the arrow keys not jumping from one cell to the other? Why were they just moving the entire spreadsheet up, down, to the left or right? They asked this question in the form of a comment on a post I wrote last September called Change where the cursor moves after entering data in Excel. In this post I explained how to change the cursor direction when pressing Enter. But as Keith said in his comment: "The tip you mention above seems close, but no cigar."
No cigar? How about a cigarillo, then??
Monday's post made the point that you're the one doing all the work all the time, and it's time to step back and let go a bit. Handing off some work isn't a sign of weakness; it says that you trust others (and, okay, need to get rid of the bags under your eyes).
Remember, on Monday, how I briefly got into about how sharing information means sharing the love? Of course "sharing" and "love" can mean many things, and put together "sharing the love" can mean even more. But in this case, I'm not talking about STDs and TMI about former relationships; no, I'm talking success, recognition, and achievement.
You are a doer. You're a multi-tasking whiz kid, burning the midnight oil, taking the heat when the office burns down, and then putting out that fire. See, I used to be like that too.
But then my family grew, and, well, it was a wake-up call to let me know that 1) I didn't need to do everything all by myself, and 2) I was not only stealing the thunder from my coworkers, I was also woefully underutilizing their considerable talents. So I learned the D word: Delegation.