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I Can't Wait to Show Her
Week of January 9, 2002
'Mommy why are all the cars going in the other direction?'
* MOVING TO MICROSOFT OUTLOOK
Switching email clients isn't a popular chore, but sometimes the
reasons for doing so are compelling. For example, if your company
switches to Microsoft Exchange Server from another mail server, Outlook
is definitely your best client choice. Or perhaps you've been using
Eudora, Outlook Express, or another POP/IMAP mailer and now want to
take advantage of Outlook's calendar and task features.
I recently helped a friend move from Outlook Express to Outlook 2002.
She had already set up her mail accounts, so we concentrated on
organizing her Inbox, Calendar, and Contacts data with features that
deliver the most 'bang for the buck' to new Outlook users.
My friend, who has her own business, uses one email address for
business and another for personal mail. She wants to respond quickly to
client messages but knows that email from family and friends can
usually wait until she has free time. Because she has two separate
email accounts, we created a new By Account view for her Inbox so she
can use the E-mail Account property to group messages. Outlook 2002
lists the E-Mail Account property in the Field Chooser under All Mail
fields. (In Outlook 2000, you can group mail by account only in
Internet Mail Only mode, not in Corporate/Workgroup mode.) Now business
and personal messages are clearly separated in her Inbox.
Next, we organized her contacts by category. Like many new Outlook
users, she wondered whether it was better to keep everyone in one
Contacts folder or to create separate folders for business and personal
contacts. I recommended the single-folder approach, because some really
useful Outlook features work only with the default Contacts folders
(e.g., the Add to Contacts command in a mail message, the toolbar's
Find a Contact feature, reminders for flagged contacts).
Categories provide an easy way to organize contacts. I showed her how
to press the Ctrl key and click to select multiple contacts and then
right-click and choose Categories to mark a group of contacts with the
same category. I also explained that an individual contact can belong
to multiple categories. We then looked at the By Category view, which
groups contacts by category. With a grouped view, you can select one or
more categories and choose Actions, New Message to Contact to create a
message addressed to all the selected contacts. You can also drag a
contact to a different category group to add the target category to the
contact's record. All versions of Outlook let you organize contacts by
In the Calendar folder, I demonstrated Outlook 2002's new color labels
and how to right-click any appointment in the Day/Week/Month view to
add color-coding. As an example, I explained how I use one bright color
for my writing deadlines to distinguish those items from others in my
Finally, to make sure she could find her way back to Outlook's original
views, I showed my friend how to use the View, Current View command to
access a list of saved views for the current folder. I also showed her
how to use the Define Views command to create new views. She had some
trouble with toolbars and menus, so I had her click Toolbars,
Customize. Then, on the Toolbars tab of the Customize dialog box, I
showed her how she can select any toolbar or menu and click Reset to
restore it to its default appearance.
After just an hour's overview of these key features, my friend is well
on her way to becoming a very productive Outlook user. I can't wait to
show her how to drag mail messages to Tasks to create new to-do items,
to use journal items to log phone calls, and to use the Rules Wizard to
organize incoming items in different ways.
Until next time,
Sue Mosher, News Editor, firstname.lastname@example.org