In this article I want to talk about a few business tips that everyone should know but I’m constantly amazed that so few do.

Firstly Word Templates, if you’re a small business owner or freelancer then you will undoubtedly be sending out the same documents on a regular basis, quotes and invoices for instance, well you could save yourself a whole lot of time if you create a proper Word Template for each one.  A template in word processing terms is a document with some settings already in place.

When you first open Microsoft Word it gives you a new document. This document is an in-built template.  Well you can also create your own Custom Templates which have all your styles and settings saved, the important things to note are when you save as a template your file will have a .dotx extension name and you should not save them with your documents but in their own folder.  It’s important to keep them separately, you will probably already have a ‘Templates’ folder on your computer and if you keep all your templates together they won’t become corrupted.  Now the joy of having all your templates at hand is when you open Word and click on ‘New’ you can select the template you wish to use, you can also insert a date that automatically updates and a table that totals amounts for you, just like an excel file.  I really advise spending some time setting up your templates properly or get red desk to do it for you.

Another important point about invoices is once created you should really be saving the file as a PDF and sending your customer a .pdf not a word file. A .pdf file cannot be altered so you know the document you’ve sent cannot be changed.  This is also very important if sending your C.V., if you send it as a .pdf  you know all your formatting is not going to jump around the page when read by the recipient.

Finally on a slightly different note, I cannot believe how many people do not know about the BCC line on email address bar.  The amount of emails I get where there are hundreds of email addresses that I have to scroll through before I get down to the message.  If you add all your email addresses into the BCC ‘Blind Carbon Copy’ then the recipients cannot see everyone else’s addresses.

If you need help with any of the functions detailed above then email me at lindsay@reddesk.co.uk

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