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In Outlook 2007 Power Shortcuts, author David Diskin shares an assortment of time-saving tips and tricks to maximize efficiency and productivity in Outlook 2007. The course covers tips for organizing and sending email, working with tasks, scheduling appointments, and maintaining contact lists. Also included are tutorials on email etiquette, Outlook customization, and much more. A quick reference guide to shortcut keys accompanies the course.
There's a quick way we can make certain messages stand out in our Inbox, based off of keywords or who sent them. For example, I want all emails from my boss Judith to show up in a different color. That way I won't miss any of her emails. With one of Judith's emails selected, I'll choose Tools and then Organize. I want to organize the Inbox using colors, so I will select that from the menu and then I'll specify to color the messages from Judith in Blue and click Apply Color.
With this finished, I'll close the window, and when I return to my Inbox any messages that are from Judith appear in blue. That's all there is to it. You just created a conditional formatting rule. Note that if you need to revise or delete the rule, it gets a little trickier. From the same Organize menu, I'll choose Using Colors again. But now I'll click on Automatic Formatting in the upper right-hand corner. This displays all the existing rules, and you probably see a few that you already knew about, like Unread Messages and Overdue email.
Here you can see the one I just created, Mail received from Judith. To temporarily disable the rule, I can uncheck it. This lets me turn it on again later if I choose to. I can also edit a rule's formatting, by selecting it and clicking a font. Now I can specify a different font, color, style or size. Let's make Judith's bold and 10-point font. I'll press OK, click OK again, and now Judith's emails really stand out.
Finally, I can also delete a rule by selecting it and pressing Delete. When I return to my Inbox, her emails no longer stand out. You'll see that conditional formatting rules apply to emails in the Inbox even if they were sent months ago, but as new messages come in, they will also exhibit the same formatting. And now onto another tip: number 7.
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