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Peak Productivity with Outlook

Peak Productivity with Outlook:

A Champion Productivity Course


Table of Contents:
Overview . 2

Personal Learning Journey Worksheet. 6

Plan for Success.. 7

Tame Your Email - Speed. 10

Tame Your Email - Frequency. 15

Archive Best Practices .. 16

Tame Your Email -Volume. 18

Communication Best Practices 19

Do Valuable Work 20

Reflect & Adjust 25

Application .. 26

PPwO Process Flow Chart .. 28

OneNote.. 29

Journal.. 32

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook


Use technology to help manage your work and time more efficiently and effectively
Recognize and deal with personal time-wasters
Create priorities and establish realistic boundaries
Create a personalized, practical system for deliver your high-impact goals

Email: Good News and Bad News
People who think email is safe, convenient and inexpensive just havent paid attention to its risks, inefficiency and cost.

Its not unusual for a North American office worker to receive 50 or more emails every day. Almost half of these messages are
irrelevant or of very low relevance and certainly not worth the time it takes to read, delete or respond to them. Data storage
and time arent cheap, yet most companies store all or most of their emails on electronic media, and printed copies of emails
choke file drawers. These stored emails are a gold mine for plaintiffs attorneys looking for evidence when suing a form for
unfair employment Practices, product liability or other alleged misdeeds.

Not only is email expensive and potentially risky, it is often inferior to other ways of communicating, such as the telephone or
even face-to-face conversations. Yet people seem inexplicably reluctant to use those other methods when email is available.

Email has both hidden costs and invisible risks, but if you use it and manage it strategically, you can get the most out of the
medium without being overwhelmed.

The Promise and the Peril

A decade ago, email scarcely existed. Now it is the default way to communicate for many, especially in business. Marshall
McLuhan, the philosopher of communications and media, memorably said, We shape our tools and they in turn shape us.
Indeed, it often seems that email shapes us more than we shape email. Who has not experienced the feeling of being
overwhelmed by a message-laden inbox? Who has not been at the receiving end of urgent pressure to respond immediately
to an email sent yesterday, or just this morning?

Emails apparent immediacy has increased the tension in workplaces. Because we now receive messages and documents in
seconds instead of days, senders expect us to compress the time it takes to read, consider and reply. Because employees
receive mails from the boss over the weekend or late at night, they feel that the workday is now 24 hours, and the work week
is seven days.

The ten stressful temptations of email are:

1. Temptation to transmit No matter whether a message merits sending or not, people send. They send to pass
along uninteresting, irrelevant articles theyve seen, they send to respond to messages that require no response and
they send to ask whether a previous message got through.

2. Temptation to answer People send unnecessary emails to say theyve received someones email. They send
emails to offer vapid assurances that they will read another senders email. This kind of misguided courtesy sets up
false expectations and encourages people to send emails just to get an answer from someone.

3. Temptation to spread it around Too many people broadcast emails to those who are not the least interested in
the message.

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
4. Temptation to insult Contempt and disregard for other people, their time and their dignity often find expression
in email practices.

5. Temptation to react rashly Emails can be curt and brusque, tempting the recipient to strike back discourteously
and do damage.

6. Temptation to cowardice Some people deliver bad news by email because they dont have the character to
deliver it in person and face the emotional flak.

7. Temptation to rebel The crescendo of emails arriving for no apparent reason from people who seem determined
never to speak as long as they can email can stir mutinous emotions.

8. Temptation to addiction Addiction to email can afflict both senders, who manage to avoid human contact and
play with technology, and recipients, who feel important when they behold a full inbox.

9. Temptation to attach Too many people attach documents, pictures, fi les and sundry irrelevancies to their emails
willy-nilly, blithely indifferent to download time, viruses and other consequences for the recipient.

10. Temptation to wave the white flag If the average North American office worker gets around 48 emails a day,
some get as many as 100. People often think theyre at fault if they dont read and respond. But thats not true! Such
high email volumes are plain wrong and damage rather than boost productivity.

Managing Email
You have many good reasons to manage your email, and you face dire consequences for failing to manage it. Consider how
many emails people send with the wrong assumptions in mind. They think email is private, privileged, protected and
ephemeral. In fact, email may last forever. It might as well be public, because the sender never knows who will read it or what
the recipient will do with it. There is no privilege, legal or otherwise, that makes email inaccessible to a determined plaintiffs
attorney, a snoopy employer or a curious government regulator. Rash or ill-considered emails have proven costly in court.

Here are a few principles to guide your use of email:

Never email anything you wouldnt want to see in the newspaper.
Remember that deleted means nothing technology can almost always recover deleted messages.
Remember that your email account is vulnerable and needs all the protection you can provide, including an inscrutable
and very, very private password.

Companies should remind users of email about their rights and responsibilities under the law. One way to do this is by means
of an electronic cautionary banner that accompanies every email message. In addition, a separate corporate statement on
email should tell every employee and email system user:
Why it exists.
Who and what fall under the umbrella of the policy.
Who owns the system and the messages on it.
Who incurs legal liability, and what kind of liability they incur.
Who monitors the system and how.
What practices the organization has adopted with respect to retention and deletion of email.
What constitutes appropriate and permitted use of the email system.
When, why and how to use the corporate Intranet.
What to do about viruses.
Whom to contact to get more information.

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Personal Learning Objective

Why am I here?
What 1 or 2 things do I want to personally get out of this learning experience?

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Where do you spend your time during the day?

Activity: Where do we spend our time?

Each group will focus on the mindset of one of the quadrants. Answer the following questions for your assigned quadrant. Be
prepared to share back to the class your top insights.
Why do we spend time in this quadrant? What makes this easy?
How can we move (this work ) into quadrant A?

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
I have this I need totally
Personal Learning Journey Worksheet mastered practice lost!
Plan for Success: Step Back, Think Big!
Plan for Success ________________ appointment

Clarity on ______________ and ____________

Defined __________________ to deliver

Plan for Success: Control Your Calendar
No ____________________ meetings

Appointments with ___________to commit to actions

Say ______ - Attend fewer, productive meetings

Tame Your Email: Increase Speed
Clear Inbox to ___________

D-cide on the spot! _______, _______, ________, _______

Use single _____________; use powerful ___________

Use ___________: Conversations, QuickSteps, @WaitingFor

Tame Your Email: Decrease Frequency
Batch Process - ______ times a day. ________is the goal

_______________email MAGNETS. No Pop-Ups

________________your email usage

Tame Your Email: Decrease Volume
__________ ____________(Spam, Newsletters, Invitations)

Use ____________________ to collect items

_________________________best approach
Do Valuable Work: Focus On the Important
______________each hour wisely. Do _____________ work

Be _____________engaged. Dont try to _______________

Do Valuable Work: Use Your Calendar As Your Roadmap
Live in your ______________. Follow your plan

Use _____-__________. Act on ________ (@Next Actions)

Color code, use ______ and ____________ appropriately

Reflect and Adjust
___________ your plan did you follow it? Why/ Why not?

__________________ how much did you do?

Identify ______________ to make, help needed

Identify ______ or __________needed to be more productive

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Plan for Success - Weekly Guide

Personal Mission The Roles in your life Goals for your Roles Projects your Choose Actions to do

Think Big and Step Back:

Look at your ROLES and your GOALS, and at your 5 Rocks:
-What PROJECTS are you committed to doing that need action this week? What actions should be done this week?
-What projects should be stopped no longer as critical as others, roles have changed Remove them from the list

Project Actions

Remember: this is not a list of all the things you could do, but a choiceful list of all the things you choose to do.

Control Your Calendar:

- Remove all OVERLAPS in your calendar. Decline anything you cannot attend (or move it to non-working time if you
think your conflict might cancel)

BLOCK OUT TIME to get the work done. Ensure there sufficient space on your calendar to get done the actions you are
choosing to do.

- Leave UNSCHEDULED TIME (white space) on your calendar for urgent items that will pop up. Leave enough time
based on the role you are in.

LIGHTEN YOUR SCHEDULE. Decide on discussions to have with your manager or key stakeholders to get you out of
low-value meetings and events simplify to be more productive. Negotiate off of low-value teams. Determine most
productive way for you to contribute to a team that meets business needs.

Plan for how you will have the ABILITY TO FOCUS to get the work done you need to get done. Make location choices
to ensure focus (huddle room, Off Lync times, Work From Home, etc.)

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

One-Time Set-ups
Best Practice for your view in Inbox
1 While in your Inbox
Go to VIEW tab
2 Click on View Settings

3 Click on Columns button

Select Frequently Used Fields

Then Add or Remove and Move Up/Down

to get the columns to be as listed

Click OK

4 Click on Sort button

5 Click box next to Show as Conversations

(this view only)

Then in Conversation settings, check the first 3


Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
6 Stay in the VIEW tab
Click on Folder Pane
Select (check)

Click Reading Pane

Select Off

Click To-Do Bar


Create some items to be used in the Workshop

1 While in your Inbox
In the HOME tab
Click on the Categorize button
then click All Categories

Click New

@Home Yellow CTRL+F4
@NextActions Maroon CTRL+F5
@SomedayMaybe Steel CTRL+F6
@WaitingFor Dark Blue

2 In the left Folder Pane

Right click on Inbox
Select New Folder

Create Folders:

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Tame Your Email: Increase Speed

Fill out the chart above, based on your knowledge of the model.

Email Short Cuts

Use keyboard short cuts to perform tasks faster than mouse and click. There are MANY keyboard short cuts. Adopt a few,
make them natural/ habits. Then learn a few more.
CTRL +1 Go to Inbox CTRL + SHIFT + K Create a new Task

CTRL + 2 Go to Calendar CTRL + SHIFT + M Create a new email

ALT + S Save & Close CTRL + SHIFT + A Create a new Appointment

CTRL + F2 Categorize as @Next Action CTRL + SHIFT + Q Create a new Invitation

CTRL + F3 Categorize as @Someday Alt, n, a, m* Inserts an email into Task or Calendar
*Note that the Alt, n, a, m keys are pressed one after the other, not at the same time)

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
Quick Steps -@Saved, @NextAction, Meeting w Att
1 On the Home tab, in the Quick Steps Dialog
box, click on the button in the lower right

2 Click New and select Custom

3 Name the rule, select and action, the click Add

Actions to customize more

Create a @FILE Saved task

Title it as shown
Enter information as shown, using the Add
Action button as needed

Create a @Next Actions task

Title it as shown
Enter information as shown, using the Add
Action button as needed

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Use the powerful Outlook Search

1 Click in the Search window near the top of
the Inbox

2 The SEARCH tab appears.

Click on +More button

Click on search criteria that will appear each

time. Typical ones are:
To From
Subject Body
Cc Attachments

Use X on the list to remove the item

Create Rule to keep track of work you DELEGATE (cc: yourself)

1 Click FILE tab
Click Manage Rules & Alerts

2 Click New Rule

Select Apply rule on messages I receive

Click Next

3 In the Step 1: box at the top

Select the two items shown to the right

4 In the Step 2: box at the bottom

Click on people or public group

Find your name on the Global Address List

Double click on it. Click OK
Click Next

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
5 In the Step 1: box at the top

Select the four items shown to the right

6 In the Step 2: box at the bottom

Click on follow-up at this time
Change to No Date Click OK

Click on category
Check box for @WaitingFor Click OK

Click on specified
Select @WaitingFor (under Inbox)
Click OK

Click Next

Click Next again

7 Name the rule: Delegate WaitingFor

Turn the rule on

Click Finish

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Use Tasks to collect actions needed (from emails, notes, ideas, follow-ups)
1 Create a new Task (Ctrl+Shift+K) and insert a
copy of the email (Alt, n, a, m)
Use Categories to label this Task with the
proper type (example: @Next Actions)
Use a name that describes the very next Action
you need to take
Insert any notes or reminders for completing
this Action
If there are multiple actions, create a Task with
Projects as the Category. Then, record
Next Action in another Task

View Inbox in Conversations

While in Inbox
Click VIEW tab

Check the box to Show as Conversations

- Choose this folder only

Under Conversations Settings, select the 2

items shown

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Tame Your Email: Decrease Frequency

When will you process Emails?

Remove Email Magnets

1 Click on FILE tab

Click Options from the left panel

2 Click Mail from the left panel

Uncheck all boxes listed under

Message Arrival

Avoid re-filling of the Inbox

1 Click on SEND/ RECEIVE tab

Click the Work Offline button, when you

want to have the mail collected at the post

Right click on the button to add it to the

Quick Access Toolbar at the top

Track your email processing time - Use the Email Diet Excel file to help you with the discipline to stay out of your
inbox, and to understand your email frequency and volume.

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Archive Best Practices

File Retention on Server if server size is reasonable - It is most productive to keep all mail in the mailbox on the
P&G server, since you can access all of it remotely, and since P&G backs this info up regularly. Check the size of your mailbox
on the server by clicking on the File tab and viewing the size in the bar chart.

EVERY 6 MONTHS: Create a new Archive if needed to keep file size on server at reasonable size
1 In Outlook, on the Home tab, click the New
Items button and select More then
Outlook Data File.

Do not use the location that is defaulted

this area is not typically backed up!
Select a part of your hard drive where
your back up routine runs, and create a
folder called Outlook Archives.

2 Suggested name for your Archive is: Archive

20xx YY (20xx is the current year and
YY is the 2-digit month number)
3 Keep old archives consistent with corporate (see: for more info)
file retention rules

ONE TIME SETUP: Auto-Archive so you do not need to

1 Set global Auto Archive settings.

a. Click on the File tab

b. Select Options
c. Select Advanced from list on the left
d. Click AutoArchive Settings button on
the right side

e. Set up as shown to the right:

Click OK

Set key folders to AutoArchive:

Right Click on the @SAVED folder

Select Properties
Click the AutoArchive tab.

Set up as shown. Click OK

Repeat this for the @SENT folder

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Instructions to remove e-mail notifications from your mobile devices.

On Start, tap or click Mail.
Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap Settings. ...
Tap or click Accounts.
Choose the account you want to change notifications for.
Under Show email notifications, tap or click the option you want.

Open Email.
Hit the menu button and select Settings.
Tap the account you want to turn notifications off for.
Scroll down to Notification settings and tap on Select ringtone.
Select Silent and tap OK.
Hit the back button until it takes you back to the inbox

iPhone users:
Tap 'Settings'
Tap 'Notifications'
Tap 'Mail'
Turn off all notifications

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Tame Your Email: Decrease Volume

Prevent SPAM from continuing to fill your Inbox
1 With the message selected

On the HOME tab

Click on Junk
Select Block Sender

2 Make this one click

Right click on the Block Sender button

Add to Quick Access Toolbar

Make Newsletters skip your Inbox

1 Right click on a newsletter type message
Select Rules
Choose Create Rule

Follow the prompts. ---Or select Create

Rule and define your own parameters!

2 Check either
From ___ or
Subject contains _____

Click on Move Messages

Select the @Newsletters folder

Click OK

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
Make empty responses to Invitations skip your Inbox
1 Click on FILE tab

Click Options from the left panel

2 Select Mail from the left menu
Scroll down to Tracking group

Check the box shown to the right

You will only see responses in the
inbox, where people typed in a
To see all responses, open an
invitation and click on the
Tracking button

Communications Best Practices

Method Response Cycle Meaning

Come to my desk Immediate unless already I will talk, unless I indicate that I need to continue to focus on a task. If
engaged you need me, try again another time.

Phone/Cell I will answer or review Voicemail = I am busy, and will call you back soon
voicemail as soon as I can Call 2X in a row: I will drop everything and answer

IM Minutes or hours (if on-line) On-line, but I must not be disturbed now
In a meeting, not multitasking. Ill respond later (in 1-4 hours)
Willing and ready to be interrupted by ANYONE for ANY REASON.
Quick response.

Email 24-48 hours This arrives in my inbox within seconds after you sent it
- but it may be 4-8 hours before I read it, and
- it may be 1-2 days before I respond
(**if it takes more than 2 minutes!)

Snail Mail 1 week Ill look this over at some time.

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Do Valuable Work

What are my personal insights on living in Quadrant A and doing valuable work?

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
Use your Calendar to put Actions that are time-critical:
Use Tentative to mean there is something I plan to do, but might be willing to move it/ not do it
Use Busy to mean I have blocked off my time here and plan to execute that work in this time slot

View your @Next Actions in Tasks section

1 Click on Tasks in bottom or lower left menu
(use CRTL+4)

On HOME tab, select Simple List

On VIEW tab click on View Settings

2 Set theses as shown:

- Columns
- Categories
- Sort

Click Filter

3 Click the Advanced tab

Click the Field button
Then mouse over Frequently Used Fields
Click on Complete

The criteria of Complete Equals No will

automatically be filled in

Click Add to List

4 Window will now look like this

Click OK

5 Right click on a Category header and select

Collapse all groups

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
Set up the To Do Bar to show your Tasks by Category
Go to VIEW tab.
Click To-Do bar:
Select: Calendar, Tasks

Right-click on the header in To-Do bar area
(on Arrange by)
>> If done successfully a menu pops up
Click on View Settings

Columns, Group By, and Sort:
Set up as shown to the right

Filter :
Click on Advanced tab:
Complete equals No should be listed,
and the only one listed

Other Settings :
Set up as shown in bottom picture to the

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook
Use Conditional Formatting to automatically color code appointments
Create a special code to identify work appointments you set for yourself. We recommend using two slashes (//) for this code
since it is rarely used elsewhere and takes little space
In the Calendar

Click on the View tab

Click View Settings button

Click Conditional Formatting button

Click Add button to create a new auto-
formatting rule.

Name the new rule // To Do
Choose a color (Maroon)

Click the button: Condition.

In the Search for box, type: //
For the In: field, select subject field
only from the drop down menu.

Click OK

You can also create other conditional formats to automatically color code 1:1s or meetings that contain other key
information. Use the same instructions as above. Or of course you can just apply one of your existing
Categories to a series (to color code a set of meetings).
We recommend having no more than 4 6 colors/ categories, or you will waste time choosing a deciphering these
on a daily basis!

Start Outlook in Calendar view

For those who close Outlook and open it on a daily basis, having the Calendar be displayed when it is opened provides you
with the best information you need to start your day.
Click the File tab

Click Options

Click Advanced
Find the Outlook start and
exit group

Click the Browse button

Select Calendar
Click OK

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Send emails while in Calendar

When doing your work (while in Calendar To create a task use Control+Shift+K
view), you can still create tasks and send To create an email use Control+Shift+M

Show Dual Time Zones on your Calendar

Click on the File tab

Click on Options
Click on Calendar
Find the Time zones
Label your home time zone
and select it from the
drop down.
Check the box for Show
second time zone,
name it in the Label box
and select it from the
drop down.
Click OK

View your home Google calendar inside your Outlook

You can view your family calendar right with your Outlook, and hide this view at any time.
Best explanation for how to do this is on this website:

How will you use the following Outlook tools? Do you think you can follow the plan that you have outlined? What things do
you think will get in the way?
Use appointments to commit your time
Using tasks to do valuable work
Using busy and tentative (properly)
Color coding your calendar appointments

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Reflect and Adjust

Where should you be spending your time?

_______ % _______ % _______ % _______ %

Currently Doing Best for my job

_______ % _______ % _______ % _______ %

How can you adjust your approach to your work to get to a more ideal breakdown for your role?

Reflect & Adjust - Weekly Guide

Review and adjust your plan to work for you!
Review your plan did you follow it?
Why? Why Not?

Multitasking How much did you do?

Identify adjustments you need to make. What help is


Identify skills or development needed to be more


Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Tame your Email First Steps:
Clean out and Sort:
1. Triage:
a. Sort by type. Reply to all invitations.
b. Delete any unneeded messages, like Out of Office replies, Invitation Responses
c. Sort by Sender or do a custom search. Delete unneeded messages
2. Sort 1: Create @ToProcess folder under Inbox, for messages you will process over next few weeks.
Move select messages to this folder:
Most recent (e.g. Today through Date: Last Month),
Click most recent message, then shift-click the last message in Date: Last Month
Right click on this selection. Select Move > Other Folder and click on @ToProcess
From your boss or other key stakeholder
Do search on Sender in the Inbox folder only
Hold CTRL and click A. This selects all of these messages
Right click on this selection. Select Move > Other Folder and click on @ToProcess
About a particular project (do a search on Subject)
Follow instructions like above
3. Sort 2: Move remaining to @Saved Inbox ZERO!
a. Keep just in case

Begin to process the @ToProcess messages

1. Work Off-Line keep Inbox from filling
2. Open the Email Diet file. Type in the number of emails in @ToProcess, and the start time.

3. Set up @ToProcess to View as Conversations, and sort by . No Preview Pane!

4. Process emails from @ToProcess one at a time.
a. Start at the top of the list and work your way down
b. Use the flowchart (4 Ds, @NextActions, Calendar appointments, etc.)
c. Use the Spam button as needed. Make rules for Newsletters
5. Dont process the @Saved. These are there for you to search and find if you need them
6. The goal is to process 20 -30 messages for each 30 minutes allotted for Application in the workshop
7. At the end, type into the Email Diet file the number of emails still remaining in the @ToProcess folder, and the
ending time. Review and reflect on the metrics that are displayed.

Plan for Success First Steps:

Plan for Success: Use the Worksheet
1. Get clear on your Roles and the Goals
2. Determine Projects
3. Document @NextActions
4. Add these to Tasks or Calendar

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

How to assimilate back at work

Talk to your Manager to align on:
Inbox Processing frequency
Communication norms: email, Lync, phone, stop by office escalation.
Use of calendar Busy/Tentative/Free
Notify work group
Change email footer
Set-up appointment with yourself in 8 weeks to review your progress

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

OneNote - OneNote is the BEST tool for keeping organized and prepared for meetings and events

Collect items for a future 1:1, meeting, or time when you are near people to interact with
Develop agenda, share agenda, share meeting notes and follow-ups
Collect ideas from many people about a proposal or development item
Share materials for use by a team
Everything is automatically saved. No need to save!
Search feature is very powerful. It even finds words in handwritten notes and pictures

OneNote has
Notebooks, Sections,
and Pages

You can keep information

of many different types
in a OneNote

Drag and Drop files/ email

into OneNote,
Or move email with
attachments using
Outlook button

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Use the Tags to be able to

find things in OneNote
that have a common
theme or feature

Link OneNote with Outlook

Add Meeting Details
including invitation list
E-mail Page with Outlook

Use To-Do Tags to keep

track of follow-ups from
a meeting
Create a Summary Page to
send to your team

Use Outlook Tasks

this will simultaneously
create a Task in your
Check complete from
either OneNote or

Track changes that are

made to the OneNote
(bold text and initials)

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook

Create a shared OneNote

To learn about OneNote type the web address below into your browser for a self-paced tutorial:
Click on: Open in OneNote.

This will start a OneNote notebook that has imbedded, the tutorial for how to use OneNote You can
follow this tutorial, find a class on OneNote, or get tips from someone who is using it with success!

Or use the ? in the upper right corner for quick help

Participant Guide October 2016
Peak Productivity with Outlook


Participant Guide October 2016