Navigate to Excel Worksheets with Hyperlinks

I encourage my clients to organize their work in Excel workbooks by creating additional worksheets. Each worksheet should contain discrete information relating to your Excel project – e.g. Monthly or Quarterly budgets; Regional sales, or information about specific product lines.

A best practice is to rename each worksheet to reflect the information it contains. I also encourage clients to add a “Tab Color” to each worksheet. This makes it easy to identify the “Active” worksheet.

Many of my clients use 20 or more worksheets in their workbooks and they ask my help in navigating to a specific worksheet or cell range.

One strategy that I share with them is to create Hyperlinks to go to a specific worksheet. Another strategy involves naming specific cells or ranges. Once you have “named” a cell or a range, simply click the drop down arrow next to the Name box; select the named range and Excel takes you directly to that “Name.”

These are great time-savers and they boost productivity. Watch this video to see these techniques in action:

Here are the steps to follow in this Excel Video Lesson:

  1. Click a worksheet and then use Ctrl+Page Down to activate the next worksheet to the Right. Ctrl+Page Up activates the next worksheet to the Left.
  2. Create a new worksheet and give it a name like “Dashboard.” Type in text like “Link to XYZ Worksheet.”
  3. Ctrl+K opens the Create Hyperlink Dialog Box. Fist choose “Place in this Document.” Then select the name of the worksheet and click OK.
  4. The easiest way to “Name” a cell or a region is to highlight it and then go to the “Name Box” to type in a name. Names must begin with a letter and not use spaces. Click ENTER to register the name.
  5. Use the drop=down arrow next to the Name Box to find and go to a named cell or range. You can also create a hyperlink to a named cell or range.

Looking for a specific Excel Video? Click here for the Index to all Excel Video Lessons

News! My DVD, “The 50 Best Tips for Excel 2007” is now available to purchase. I invite you to visit my online bookstore for more details.

More reasons why names matter

“Thank you (fill in the blank) for your business.”

Don’t you hate form letters? I do. But I have a small problem and I hope that you can help me solve it.

First the good news. I am proud to say that my post yesterday – “Why names matter” – is now my all-time best in terms of the number of readers who clicked on it. Thank you one and all! And that is my problem.

I was able to personally respond to the readers who sent me an email commenting on the article. We started a dialog because the first barrier was crossed – we now know each other’s names and we can start to talk to one another. In a manner that is meaningful to each other.

But how do I start to have a dialog with each of you? In a manner that is meaningful to you? Are you interested?

I suppose that you could say that we already have started. You wouldn’t be reading this post if the content didn’t provide something of value – to you. But you know more about me than I know about you.

It all starts with a name. Knowing your name. Addressing you by your name. Getting to know what makes you unique. Getting to know what we have in common. Where we disagree.

In order to start a conversation with a stranger here are two points to consider:

  • An excerpt from Seth Godin’s post “Name tags:”
    • I love name tags.I think doing name tags properly transforms a meeting. Here’s why:
      a. people don’t really know everyone, even if they think they do.
      b. if you don’t know someone’s name, you are hesitant to talk to them.
      c. if you don’t talk to them, you never get to know them and you both lose.
      d. if you are wearing a name tag, it’s an invitation to start a conversation.
  • An excerpt from the article, “10 Reasons Commenting is Good for Bloggers:”
    • Make friends and influence people – Blogging is partly a networking activity. People are more likely to link to you (or more) if they have heard of you. Get yourself out there, make friends.
    • Clicks – People click your link to see what other interesting stuff you write about. Obvious but true.

I do believe that my blog is getting more attention because I am paying more attention – to what others are writing about and commenting about on various blogs. I have started to add my comments when I feel that I have something to contribute. I always leave my full name and email address. I never hide behind a pseudonym. I am curious – I enjoy exploring different points of view. I like to ask questions. I like dialog. How about you?

“If you don’t know someone’s name you are hesitant to talk to them.” – Seth Godin

If you are reluctant to post your comment here on my blog, that is okay! I welcome your thoughts. I invite you to send me an email – My name is Danny Rocks. I am interested in whatever you are interested in.

5 Great Tips to Improve Your Writing

Click hereto read a really useful article by Simon Payn, “Five Lessons From Newspapers to Boost Your Blog’s Circulation.”

Don’t be put off by the title. You don’t have to be a blogger to benefit from these 5 tips.

Do you write memos? Read the article.

Do you give presentations? Read the article.

If you want to improve your writing skills or presentation skills, you will get great tips on:

  1. Brevity – What if you had to cut your article or presentation by 50%?
  2. A Strong Opening – Capture your audience’s attention at the start.
  3. Use Headlines – Readers like to skim. Give them a road-map.
  4. Visuals. Get the most out of them.
  5. Accuracy. Check your facts, check your spelling, check your links.

Please share some of your favorite tips. What articles have helped to improve your communications?

If the news is that important, it will find me

As soon as I saw this headline, “CBS Said to Consider Use of CNN in Reporting,” I thought back to this comment:

“If the news is that important, it will find me.”

– A college student responding to a focus group question

I used that comment as the lead-in to a recent post – “The Medium is the Message.”

That innocent answer has stayed with me ever since. Perhaps we are evolving from a “Search for information” age to a “Pass it along to my network” era.

Yes, we still prize “the news that you can trust.” But our trusted sources have now changed. Walter Cronkite earned our trust anchoring the CBS Evening News from 1962 to 1981. He had gravitas. He also had a captive audience. The current CBS Evening News anchor has – I’m not sure since I no longer watch the program – and has a dwindling audience. And little relevance for many.

  • We no longer wait for the news to come on. We are too mobile for that.
  • We can search for the news when we want it. Google has made this so simple to do.
  • Or, we can rely on our trusted network to forward us the news that matters most to them – and to us.

There is so much to look for. So much to search through. So little time. So little trust.

Perhaps the CBS Evening News” is being replaced by the “My Social Network News.” News that you can trust.

If CBS and CNN team up to share resources devoted to reporting the news, what will they do with the savings? Satisfy their investors? Or devote more resources to making their content more important? So important that it finds me!

What do you think? Please add your comments below.

Put it in Writing

“Love. Fall in love and stay in love. Write only what you love, and love what you write. The key word is love. You have to get up in the morning and write something you love, something to live for.”

– Ray Bradbury

I am frequently asked, “Why do you blog? Isn’t that a lot of work. Who reads your blog?”

Seth Godin posed another question on his blog last year, “If no one reads your post, does it exist?”

Good questions. Here is how I respond:

  1. Why do you blog? For several reasons, but the primary one is that it helps me to reach clarity. Thinking about a topic is interesting. Writing out my thoughts is commitment. The writing process demands that I edit my thoughts. I am not just writing to amuse myself. I am writing to learn more about the topic – and also about myself in the process.  And I write to share my thoughts and insights with my readers.
  2. Isn’t that a lot of work? Yes.
  3. Who reads your blog? I can’t tell you by name. Some people write to tell me that they enjoy my blog. Others do so when we meet. Looking at my reports, I can at least see which articles are read the most and which search words people used to find my blog. And, obviously you – if you are reading this now. I’d like to know why you read this blog and what you like or don’t like.
  4. If no one reads your post, does it exist? Yes, of course. And it is never lost thanks to the indexing power of Google, etc. That is one of the benefits of blogging – accessible information. Found, when you need to or want to find it.

Business Blogging 101

I found an interesting article on the Business Week website: “Social Media Will Change Your Business.” (click here to read the complete article)

This is why I found it interesting:

  1. The article was originally printed (yes, old media) in the May, 2005 version of Business Week Magazine.
  2. It was also published on-line. The editors say that they continue to see this article downloaded by thousands of visitors.
  3. The article is now fully “annotated” with updates, corrections and extensions to the original article.
  4. For me, this reveals the true promise of electronic publishing. No longer can we say, “It is set in type.” Dead media comes alive!

For anyone interested in a quick, informative introduction to the world of “Social Media” – and how it may impact your business, your products and your customers – this is your starting point.

If you enjoy the article, share it with your friends. And… tell our readers what you think. Add your comments below.

The Magic of Hyper-Links

For some reason I missed this story when it was originally published in The Wall Street Journal:

“Borders Tries About-Face on Shelves” – by Jeffrey A. Trachtenberg

I am always on the look-out for stories on In-store merchandising, book publishing and bookstores. But I missed this one.

However, I stumbled across it via a series of hyper-links:

  1. A post on Seth Godin’s Blog – “Do you have” vs. “Do you want” which referenced…
  2. A post on the Brand Autopsy Blog – “Borders Reducing Its Borders” which was commentary on the original WSJ story about Borders Bookstores’ decision to:
    1. Place more of their books “face-out” on their shelves vs. the traditional “spine-out” style (common in libraries)
    2. This means cutting back on the number of individual titles stocked in each store by @ 10% (9,350 titles)
    3. Because when this new merchandising strategy was tested in a prototype Borders Bookstores, sales of the individual titles placed “face-out” increased by 9%

For anyone who has a life outside of book publishing, book selling and libraries this may seem like a “no-brain-er.”

“Some think the move is overdue. Unlike modern supermarkets, booksellers haven’t done enough to make books look attractive on the shelves, says John Deighton, editor of the Journal of Consumer Research.

“Breakfast cereals are not stocked end-of-box out,” he says. “You want to your product to be as enticing as possible. It’s a little bizarre that it’s taken booksellers this long to realize that the point of self-service is to make the product as tempting as possible.”

“To be as enticing as possible…” As in to pick up the book, look inside and decide to purchase it! Continue reading “The Magic of Hyper-Links” »

The Medium is The Message

“If the news is that important, it will find me.”

– A college student responding to a focus group question

The times, they are a changin’. No doubt about it. The New York Times, Time Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, etc.  They have had to change, albeit reluctantly.

There has been a shift in power:

The mainstream media no longer control how their content is delivered – it can be forwarded by a friend or colleague. There are multiple channels where it can be accessed – original content frequently appears as a “link” on a competitors website. And, of course, the mainstream media no longer control when their content can be read or seen or heard.

I no longer wait for the “thump” of the Sunday edition of the New York Times to hit my doorstep. That used to be my signal to wake up, make the coffee and relax for a few hours absorbing the news and views of the newspaper of record.

I ended my subscription to the paper almost two years ago. I do not miss the full page ads from Macy’s and Bloomingdale. But I am sure that those department stores miss me. Or at least my subliminal attention. And I am sure that the New York Times misses both the revenue they got from my subscription and the advertising revenue from Macy’s and Bloomingdale. I will admit, however,  to missing the two hours of sitting in my easy chair on Sunday morning!

The times they are a changin’.

Take this morning. I found this headline intriguing:

Finding Political News Online, the Young Pass It On – by Brian Stelter

So I clicked on it to read it. However, it is original content from the NY Times but I found it on the website. This is now a common occurrence. I call it “Drudging the content.” This is a reference to the popular news website, The Drudge Report which does no actual reporting. It simply – and effectively – populates its only web page with “links” to original content found on other websites.

Does it really matter where I get the article from? Not to me.

I do hope that MSNBC and The NY Times have some sort of reciprocal revenue arrangement worked out. But that is not of my concern. To quote the unnamed college student, “If the news is that important it will find me.”

I titled this post, “The Medium is The Message”  as a tribute to Marshall McLuhen, a Canadian educator who coined the phrase in 1964. Here is a short definition of the phrase, courtesy of Wikipedia:

“The medium is the message” is a phrase coined by Marshall McLuhanmeaning that the form of a medium imbeds itself in the message, creating a symbiotic relationship by which the medium influences how the message is perceived, creating subtle change over time. The phrase was introduced in his most widely known book, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, published in 1964.[1] McLuhan proposes that media themselves, not the content they carry, should be the focus of study; he said that a medium affects the society in which it plays a role not only by the content delivered over the medium, but by the characteristics of the medium itself.

I first remember hearing this phrase when I was 17 in 1967. I was standing in line waiting to see the movie, “The Graduate” and was discussing this concept with my friends. I continue to retain a vivid image of that evening in my mind – 41 years later! Both McLuhan’s concept and the movie have had a profound impact on my thinking.

Just as YouTube, Facebook and the other Social Networks are having a profound impact on our current culture. Continue reading “The Medium is The Message” »

Getting the Competitive Edge in News Reporting

Gathering and reporting the news has always been a highly competitive business. It is cut-throat. The race to get “the scoop” or to “break the story” is how reputations are made.

Daily newspapers, weekly news magazines, the 6:00 PM network news, 24/7 cable news, the Internet. The medium changed. However, the way that news was gathered and reported did not change so much.

Until recently.

To properly report a story you had to be there. On-the-ground. Live and in-person. You needed access to your subjects (and their handlers) in order to obtain exclusive interviews. You needed to be present in order to report “leaks” from anonymous sources. The reason that reporters needed to be on the scene was to report the “back story” – the story behind the story.

But now there is a new story. And this time it is about the process of gathering and reporting the news:

“The Buzz on the Bus: Pinched, Press Steps Off” – This is the story in today’s New York Times.

Except… It was also the lead political story on the MSNBC website. And it had a prominent placement on The Drudge Report. And The Huffington Post and at least a half a dozen other Internet “news” sites.

Here is a brief excerpt from the NY Times piece written by Jacques Steinberg:

“Traveling campaign reporters say they try to do more than just regurgitate raw information or spoon-fed news of the day, which anyone who watches speeches on YouTube can do. The best of them track the evolution and growth (or lack thereof) of candidates; spot pandering and inconsistencies or dishonesty; and get a measure of the candidate that could be useful should he or she become president.

Deep and thoughtful reporting is also being produced by journalists off the trail. And some news organizations that can afford it are doing both. But the absence of some newspapers on the trail suggests not only that readers are being exposed to fewer perspectives drawn from shoe-leather reporting, but also that fewer reporters will arrive at the White House in January with the experience that editors have typically required to cover a president on Day 1.”

(Click here to view a slide show accompanying the NY Times article.)

So, today, many news reporters do not have to put up with inconvenient travel schedules, stripping down in order to pass through airport screening machines, fast-food diets, suspicious hotel accommodations and a noticeable lack of sleep. Their editors don’t even need to go to the expense of installing expensive connections to The Associated Press (AP) or Reuters. They just need a 24/7 broadband connection to The Drudge Report.

The Drudge Report is one of the most widely viewed Internet sites. Almost every political reporter maintains a constant connection to his site. And Matt Drudge does not even report! He collects the news stories that others report and he creates “headline links” to the original sources. The only editing that he does is to select the stories to place on his one-page website and to determine their placement or prominence.

And now, it appears, that many mainline media are “doing the Drudge.” They are populating their pages via “links” to the original reporting that others perform. They need news content that is constantly updated. However, the costs of actually going out into the field to gather reports are rapidly escalating at the same time that their subscription base and advertising revenue are in a precipitous free-fall.

So what can the media do? Create “links” to other media sites? This is not a blatant case of “passing off as their own” the original content that others create. After all, the original sources are always credited – and I hope compensated!

“The Medium is the message.”

Marshall McLuhan coined that phrase in 1964. That was at a time when the visual media, especially television was rapidly replacing newspapers, books and radio as the preferred medium for news and entertainment.

Perhaps now, 44 years later it is time to reapply this phrase to our analysis of news reporting – especially in the arena of politics. Continue reading “Getting the Competitive Edge in News Reporting” »

Why We Belong to Organizations

“People want to be part of something larger than themselves.  They want to be part of something they’re really proud of, that they’ll fight for, sacrifice for, that they trust.”

– Howard Schultz, Chairman and Founder of Starbucks

I found this quote this morning during my usual wandering through favorite websites.  It appears on business guru Tom Peters’ website – in his “free stuff” section.  I got to Tom’s website via another excellent site – Speaking on Speaking.

The Internet is something larger than ourselves that we want to be a part of – at least “our favorites” or the “blogs” that we participate in or the multitude of friends that we associate with through My Space and other social networks.

However, Mr. Schultz was really talking about what sets his company – Starbucks – apart.  Why do people want to work there?  Why do people like to buy their products and hang out in their cafes?

Job satisfaction is not directly related to how much we get paid for what we do.  Certainly money is important and we must all feel that we are being compensated on a fair and equitable scale.  But that is not job satisfaction.

Why do we choose the companies or industries that we work in?  The causes that we support?  The people that we want to be around – or to be like?  What gives us satisfaction?

People, Products, Reputation

We want to work with people that we like and respect.  We want to produce products and services that we are proud of.  These help to establish our reputation.  This is what give us satisfaction. This is why we choose our associations.  This is why we fight for what we believe in.  This is why people will trust us.

From today’s web-crawl and finding Tom Peters’ treasure trove of “freebies”, I have a stack of quotations to add to my database.  But I also have found motivation to get my day going.  I hope that this blog is help you as well.  If so, please share your thoughts with our readers.