Outlook Calendar has become a great helping hand for business individuals and employees to keep proper track of their meetings, appointments, and all other schedules. It presents a great set of features and customization options for users to feel comfortable while using the calendar. But there are many tips and tricks that can turn the experience even more pleasant. This blog is all about it and presents the top 14 Microsoft Outlook calendar tips and tricks.
1.Use Natural Language to set Meeting Time
Natural language functionality by Microsoft is helping greatly to reduce time-consuming manual works. You can use natural language while setting up a meeting time in Outlook. Under the "Start time" section, you can remove the date showing there and type like "next week Monday" or "first Tuesday of July" or "Christmas". In all such typing, you will notice that the calendar automatically finds that date and show it to you. Therefore, natural language makes the meeting setup process more convenient.
2.Date Navigator for Calendar
Outlook Calendar has some pre-designed layouts to see the calendar, such as day view, work week view, week view, month view, and schedule view. You can easily navigate between them to keep the calendar the way you want. But what if you want to view only specific dates, such as only 2 weeks or 3 different dates. You can do it easily using the month calendar view from the left. If you want to see only 2 weeks, click on the first-week date and then drag it to the second week's last date. This way, your calendar will now show only 2 weeks. If you want to see 3 different dates like the 3rd, 7th, and 14th of June, you can press those dates from the left-side month view of the calendar along with the "Ctrl" key. This way, those dates are selected and shown in the calendar.
3.Reply with Meeting
Outlook enables you to reply email threads with a meeting. To do that, select the email you want to reply to with a meeting, then go to the "Home" tab, and click "Reply with Meeting" icon located in the "Respond" section next to the "Forward" button. You will see that Outlook composes a new email with the title same as the email thread, while it also includes the email message for which you have created the meeting email. So, now all you have to do is set the times and add additional details and send the email.
4.Create Appointment from Email
Just like replying with a meeting, Outlook also allows you to create an appointment from email. To do that, select and drag the email to the "Calendar" icon located in the bottom left corner. It will open up a new appointment window with the title same as the email subject and also include the email text in it. Now, you just have to set the time and save it.
5.Recreate Meeting Conveniently
If you want to have a subsequent meeting or want to recreate an old meeting, you can easily do it. Select the meeting you want to recreate, press "Ctrl", and then drag it to the date and time where you want to have another same meeting. This way, a new similar meeting is created. To inform participants about the meeting, simply double-click the meeting, and then click the "Send" button.
As per the default Outlook Calendar settings, the timescale is shown with a 30 mins increment. But you can easily change the timescale. To do that, bring your mouse cursor near the timescale, right-click, and then choose the time you want to set.
7.Multiple Time Zones
If you are dealing with clients or teams located in different time zones, then setting up meeting timing can be quite confusing. But Outlook Calendar enables you to add multiple time zones to get rid of this confusion. To do that, bring your mouse cursor near the timescale, right-click, and then click "Change Time Zone". Now in the "Time zones" section, tick the "Show a second time zone" checkbox and then set the time zone you want. You can even add more time zones from there. Once done, click "OK" and you will see that your calendar now shows multiple time zones. There is another way to do it from the meeting scheduling window. When you are scheduling a meeting, you can tick the "Time zones" box, select the time zone, and set the meeting.
8.View Multiple Calendars
You are not just confined with your one Outlook Calendar but can also view and add other calendars. To add more calendars, go to the "Home" tab and click "Add Calendar". From there, pick the option from where you want to add the calendar or create a new one. Once done, you will see that calendar on the left side under the "My Calendars" section. Now select that calendar and you will notice it appears alongside your main calendar. If you want to make it dissolve with your main calendar, click the "left arrow" icon next to the calendar name.
9.View Calendar alongside Email
While you are in the Outlook Email window, you don't have access to the calendar. But you can view the calendar alongside email with just a few simple clicks. To do that, right-click the "Calendar" icon from the bottom left corner and click "Open in New Window". This way, the calendar is opened in another window that you can keep alongside writing the email.
10.Visualize Calendar with Colors
Outlook Calendar shows the scheduled meetings in blue color, but you can customize the color based on your needs. To change all meetings color simultaneously, bring the mouse cursor near to any meeting and right-click the mouse. Next, click "Color" and then pick the one you like. If you want to change the color of one specific meeting, then select that meeting, go to the "Meeting" bar from the top, click "Categorize", and then choose the color from there or click "Set Quick Click" to create your own color category. In the "Set Quick Click" window, when you choose the color, you can also assign the shortcut key to it. So, set up settings as you want and then click "OK". Next, select the meeting you want to categorize and press the shortcut key.
11.Change Work Hours
You don't have to stick with Outlook Calendar pre-defined work hours, as you can easily change them as per your desire. To do that, right-click any entry in the calendar and then click "Calendar Options". In the "Work time" section, change the "Start time" and "End time" as per your work hours. You can also change your weekly working days from there. Once done, click "OK" and Outlook will save these as your work hours.
Outlook Calendar itself provides a great set of features, but third-party add-ins can further enhance them. There are hundreds of add-ins that you can review and add to your Outlook Calendar. To access them, go to your email view and from the "Home" tab, click on "Get Add-ins". From there, you can search and explore the add-ins and add the ones you like the most.
13.End Meetings Early
Usually, when we set up a meeting schedule in Outlook Calendar, sometimes things become quite packed and we are stuck with having back-to-back meetings with no breaks. But Outlook Calendar allows you to either start the meeting late or end early. To do that, right-click any entry in the calendar and then click "Calendar Options". Afterward, tick the "Shorten appointments and meetings" checkbox and then select either "End early" or "Start late". Next, set the minutes as per your needs. Once done, click "OK". Now when you will set up a new meeting, you will see that either the starting or ending time is changed based on your settings.
The dark mode is trending today and lots of applications are now providing the dark mode functionality. The same is the case with Outlook Calendar. To turn on the dark mode, right-click any entry in the calendar and then click "Calendar Options". Now go to the "General" tab and from the drop-down menu of "Office Theme", select "Black". Lastly, click "OK" and you will see your Outlook Calendar has turned into dark mode.
Outlook Calendar is undoubtedly a feature-rich tool to make our daily business activities smooth and well-planned. The tips and tricks discussed above are some of the added support that can increase the overall experience of using Outlook Calendar.
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