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Highlight urgent items


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Highlight urgent items

Here's a tip for your Excel users who've always wanted to use the Wingdings font in a worksheet but couldn't think of a compelling reason to do so. Suppose they're responsible for maintaining the master to-do list for their team or department, and they e-mail everyone a copy on a weekly basis.

What can they do to make it easier for everyone to notice the most important items on the lists? If the worksheet contains a "severity" or "priority" column, they can make the most important items stand out by sorting them to the top of the list.

Or they can introduce a graphical element to their spreadsheet by flagging those urgent items. For example, the "lit fuse" icon you get when you format a capital M in the Wingdings font is a good choice.

To try out this trick, type M in a cell. With the cell selected, go to Format | Cells | Font. Choose Wingdings from the Font list, select red from the Color list, choose 18 from the Size list, and click OK. The result is an icon that's guaranteed to catch the reader's eye when you really want them to pay attention to that row.

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