Tag Archive for 'microsoft'

Achievement unlocked: maintain “inbox zero” for a year

“Inbox zero” means having no messages in your “IN” tray (and keeping it that way). This is not meant to be a goal in itself, but it’s a clear sign of whether you’re staying on top of things, and it lowers the general stress level. That’s remarkably easy with Outlook, even without any fancy add-on gimmicks.

Without trying very hard, I have managed to keep my email inbox at work at zero every day. It’s not because I don’t get any mail – it’s because Outlook makes it so easy to track open tasks with one or two clicks, even when the email itself is moved to a subfolder.

It’s easy enough to clear out the inbox – just dump everything into a subfolder, or just straight up archive or delete it. Gone. Done. See? Yay!

Not so fast – the real challenge is the “keeping it that way” part. Since I joined SDS last year I have enjoyed getting back to using Outlook again instead of Lotus Notes for almost two decades straight, ugh! I am frankly amazed at myself because with Outlook I have finally been able to maintain “inbox zero” all this time. I feel it’s worth sharing my method in the following. Continue reading ‘Achievement unlocked: maintain “inbox zero” for a year’

Excel tip: Alt+Enter works in formulas, too!

I’ve been using Excel for exactly thirty years – I still have a Macintosh floppy disk with MS Excel version 0.9 – so you’d think I know my way around Excel pretty well.

Yes I do, but that’s not to say that I don’t still learn something new. Pivot tables? I remember my dad trying to explain the concept to me twenty-five years ago but I never understood them well enough to use them, until I changed jobs in 2010 and it became a focus.

Today though, I came across something that blew my mind, and that was not because it’s complicated but because it’s so obvious and yet invisible: Continue reading ‘Excel tip: Alt+Enter works in formulas, too!’

“The felt is worn”

I can’t take credit for the recent story about emails not going more than 500 miles. I want to make up for it by posting this completely true story that I personally experienced.

This story takes place in 1996, way back when mice still had balls. At the time, I was working at Microsoft, fielding calls from Microsoft partners, retailers, and customers. The calls ranged from simple customer questions about where to buy some Microsoft product, to extremely complicated licensing questions from major partners. It was generally interesting and often challenging. And once in a while, a question came along that had me in tears.

Continue reading ‘“The felt is worn”’

20 years ago

I came across this photo recently, and it struck me: that’s twenty years ago!

Win95launch

I remember that time well. I was working for Microsoft Denmark as a member of a novel 6-man team called the Microsoft ShowTeam that toured the country for months and held hands-on Windows 95 experience sessions. We also presented Windows 95 at Denmark’s biggest IT fair which coincided with the Win95 launch. It was awesome – being part of this milestone is my personal little claim to fame.  Continue reading ’20 years ago’

Show keyboard shortcuts in Windows 7

Microsoft released Windows 7 in 2009, and one thing I’ve always hated about it is that the option to underline keyboard shortcuts was gone. Why would anyone deliberately make it harder for users to work smarter, by no longer showing them those underlines? I’ve finally discovered that the underlines still exist — here’s how to turn them on! Continue reading ‘Show keyboard shortcuts in Windows 7’