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Using built-in Quick Steps

From: Outlook 2010: Effective Email Management

Video: Using built-in Quick Steps

Quick Steps are a great new feature in Outlook 2010. Quick Steps combine a series of steps that you would like to have taken with one or more selected e-mail messages. The easiest way to think of them is Quick Steps are like macros that you write to inside Microsoft Outlook. There are four built-in Quick Steps. Three of them require some further definition on your part. So the first time you use them, you want to be ready to fill in the information that's required. For example, you can easily take a message and send it to your manager in one click.

Using built-in Quick Steps

Quick Steps are a great new feature in Outlook 2010. Quick Steps combine a series of steps that you would like to have taken with one or more selected e-mail messages. The easiest way to think of them is Quick Steps are like macros that you write to inside Microsoft Outlook. There are four built-in Quick Steps. Three of them require some further definition on your part. So the first time you use them, you want to be ready to fill in the information that's required. For example, you can easily take a message and send it to your manager in one click.

There is a rule called To Manager, but you need to know who your manager is and know their e-mail address to be able to use this. So, for example, if we wanted to pass along this e-mail from Lisa Callahan and send it directly to our manager, we click the To Manager Quick Step and because we're using it for the first time, it will prompt us to enter some information. Now my manager is Judith. So I want to go find the information from Judith, and say that's who I want to address this to.

If you report to or support more than one person, To Manager might be simplistic. If I reported to Judith but also, for example, to Ken, I might want to rename this To Judith rather than To Manager and then create a special Quick Step for Ken that would be different than this. But I only have one person who I report to, so I am going to leave this for To Manager. It is addressed to Judith. Her name is underlined. I know that all works, and this simply forwards this to her, and I am going to save this rule.

So now when I click on this e-mail and send it to my manager, it automatically opens up an e-mail addressed to Judith so I can type in some other information and say, "Thought you'd like to see this" and send it, that quickly, that easily! So, from now on, To Manager is going to work just fine for me. The second Quick Step is called Team Email, and the assumption here is that you work on one team with one work group. Again, fairly simplistic. If you have different project teams you work on, say you work on Projects Alpha and Bravo, you might want to have team Alpha and team Bravo.

But let's assume one team, just so you can see how this works. If you need to create more Quick Step, we'll do that in a next video. So we are going to choose Team E-mail, and it says that we want to create a new message, send it to our team, so we can choose people from the address book, or we can type them in. We are actually going to choose the people on our team, and here that includes Kim Romano and Kirk Hansel, who is our designer, and Petal Jones. Those are the three people on our team. Now if there were people who weren't in my address book, I could actually type their e-mails in here, if I wished, and find them that way.

But I have all my folks. This is my team, and I am going to save this. So now when I need to send an e-mail to my whole team I click Team E-mail. There is my pre addressed e-mail, ready for me to put in my subject, and then I could write whatever I wanted to and click Send. The third built-in set of Quick Steps is called Done, and you have to define what it means to be done with something. When you click Done for the first time, then you are asked what actions you want to take, and notice that there are three here, okay? The first is that if this item is flagged or not, it will be marked as complete.

The second is that it will be moved to a particular folder. You can choose what folder you'd like to move it to. I've actually created that folder my uses, called Ta-Da, for every thing that's been finished. So I am going to move it to the Ta-Da folder. And if it is unread, I am going to mark it as read. So this is a way to say, I am going through my Inbox, I read this, I am done with it, and very quickly iterate through all of these e-mail messages and get them taken care of. So I am going to save this. So I actually have taken care of this missing check to Greg. I am just going to mark it as Done.

Okay and notice that the e-mail from Greg is moved, and we are actually going to find it marked as complete in the Ta-Da folder. How quick and easy that is! I've already taken look at this message from Greg about the pizza. Now I don't want to mark this as Done, because I didn't do any thing with it. I am just going to delete it. That makes my like easy. I have taken care of this e-mail form Hiro about the Bonsai tree. So I am going to mark that as done. Again, three things are being done, like the macro. If there has a flag on it or not, it is marked as complete. It doesn't matter.

It's moved to the other folder, and it is marked as read. All three of those things are done really quickly with this Done Quick Step. Finally, I have Reply and Delete, and we are actually going to use that for this vacation request. Because by vacation request has been approved, I am not feeling a big need to track that forever. So I am going to choose the Reply and Delete Quick Step, and this one does exactly what it says it does, so there is no information for me to fill in. It opens a Reply, and I can say, "Thanks, Judith! I'll be thinking of you in sunny Winnipeg, Manitoba!" Now its Reply and Delete.

When I click Send, my original message is gone, and it is not sent to Ta-Da. It was sent to Deleted Items folder. So four built-in Quick Steps, all of them work very easily. You customize them once, and you can use them then to quickly move through e-mail, and either reply to it and delete, forward it to a manager or mark it as done. The fourth Team Email actually allows me to quickly communicate with my entire team without having to pull up a distribution list to do that.

I think you'll like the new Quick Steps in Outlook 2010.

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Outlook 2010: Effective Email Management

25 video lessons · 13626 viewers

Gini Courter
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