2018 - AdvantEdge Training & Consulting

Application Parts in Access

  Application Parts are a great way to quickly build  databases. By using application parts templates, you can easily create tables, queries, forms, and reports. To do this, click the Create tab, then click the drop-down for Application Parts (located on the left side of the ribbon). There are a number of templates to choose from.  Make sure that all tabs are closed prior to choosing an Application Part, or an error message will pop-up asking if you want to close all objects. In order to populate the template, you will need to click Yes. Get more Access tips and tricks with a class from AdvantEdge Training & Consulting.

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Business Communications, Public Speaking

Effective Presentation – Create a Powerful Introduction

  All too often, we watch presentations in which the speaker starts off by telling you who they are and what they are going to talk about.  The problem with these intros is that they are boring and much of the audience tunes them out. If you want to capture people’s attention at the beginning, you need to start strong with something the audience isn’t expecting.  Surprise them!  Then you have an excellent chance of keeping listeners with you thorough the whole presentation. Also, the more comfortable you are with those first few sentences, the more it will help you build and maintain your composure during the remainder of your presentation. Capture Your Audience’s Attention  Your first goal is to capture your audience’s attention.  So if “Today I am going to talk about. . .” is dull, what are better ways to begin?  Start with outrageous!   Begin with a powerful quote – Your audience may not initially know that it is a quote. Ask a Rhetorical Question – They will almost always answer it (to themselves), thus they become more engaged. Make a startling statement – Use a fact that will surprise them, related to the topic. Use Humor – just make sure it is relevant to the situation or topic. Advance your career impact by mastering the art of Public Speaking with training from AdvantEdge Training.  

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Public Speaking

Afraid of Public Speaking?

The idea of speaking in front of an audience sends terror into the hearts of many. Will I say something stupid? Will I forget my speech? Will I sound like I know what I am talking about? Will I bore my audience to tears? Conquer that fear with training As with anything, the art of presentation can be mastered by gaining a solid foundation through training. AdvantEdge Training & Consulting has overhauled its Public Speaking courses to truly hone in on giving you the skills you need to become a confident and engaging presenter. Effective Presenters 1 – Structure and Delivery will help those who are new to presenting master the basics. We will show you how to work with your natural speaking style to become a comfortable and engaging presenter. We will give you tips and tricks to overcome your fears, and provide the techniques to organize your thoughts so that you can present them with confidence, clarity, and conviction. The class offers plenty of opportunities to practice presenting in front of fellow students, as well as the unique opportunity to review and critique your own presentation. For those who have mastered the basics, we offer Effective Presenters 2 – Becoming a Dynamic Presenter. There is no worse feeling than knowing you have lost your audience. You may have the most interesting information to share, but if they are not paying attention, they will never hear it. Our Effective Presenters 2 class gives more in-depth coaching, helping you become a more dynamic and engaging speaker, ensuring that your audience stays focused throughout your presentation. We will give you the skills you need to adapt to your audience, as well to overcome common obstacles to connecting with them.  We will even help you learn to effectively use presentation tools, such as PowerPoint. Take the anxiety out of public speaking by gaining the skills you need to be a confident presenter!    

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Project Management

Waterfall vs. Agile Project Management

Depending on the project, accurate and consistent management styles do matter, especially when it comes to finishing a project successfully. Two project management styles that are used regularly are Waterfall and Agile. These two project management styles are quite distinct. Deciding which style to use can be difficult. What are the main differences between these two management styles? The Waterfall method is a very linear way of working through a project. Typically, one part of a project is completed and then you move onto the next step. This is not to say that multiple steps can not run simultaneously, but the general path is linear. The Agile method on the other hand is much more fluid in the way it completes steps along the way of a larger project. Parts of a project do not need to be completed in a linear pattern. Further, multiple versions of the same project can be completed and tested, ensuring that the best option is used in the end. Although there might be steps that need to be completed in some sort of sequence, these steps, or “sprints,” are tested and reviewed throughout the process, allowing for quality assurance, and to minimize issues as they arise. Choosing which project management method is best is dependent on the nature of the project. For example, since the Agile method is based on being able to review progress in small regular time frames, companies running software development often choose the Agile method, allowing for code to be tested regularly. Whereas construction projects typically use the Waterfall method as it steers the project  from one logical step to the next, as the concrete subcontractor can not pour concrete until the plumbers  lay their pipe in the ground, and the roofer can’t finish his work until the framing is complete. The bottom line for deciding which project management method to use is to do the necessary research to figure out what method best fits the planned project. This might include courses to fully understand each method. Once deciding which method to use, it is vital that the appropriate stakeholders are trained to understand the method fully, ensuring that everyone is on the same page during a project. AdvantEdge Training & Consulting can give you the skills you need in Project Management.

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Microsoft Office, Professional Development

The Value of our Training

  Most people agree in the value of employee development. From improved morale to reduced turnover,  from better productivity to more opportunity to promote from within, offering training to your team is beneficial for everyone, including the company. It can sometimes be difficult, though, to know worthwhile training from off-the-shelf time wasters. There’s more to learning than just hearing instructions, and there’s more to training than narrating a video. That’s where AdvantEdge Training & Consulting stands out. Our classes are taught live and in-person, affording students the opportunity to engage with their instructor, as well as with other students. Beyond simple videos and slideshows, your students get course materials that they can work with, as well as save for future reference. All classes are dynamic and interactive, so your team is excited and participating throughout. Microsoft application classes are hands-on, so students actively learn. Professional Development (soft skills) classes are engaging and encouraging. Because we develop our own courses, AETC can even work with you and your team to create tailored courses that specifically address your situation, needs, and goals. Even after their fun, active class, any people benefit from post-class support. AdvantEdge Training & Consulting offers Workshops, where your team can get in-person, one-on-one guidance from their instructor, so they can best apply what they have learned. Classes taken in our virtual training centers even include free retakes. What You Do Want vs. What You Don’t Want: Live, in-person instruction vs.  Videos, because they’re definitely not shopping online while the video plays in another browser, right? Interactive, Hands-on training vs. Online slideshows (I saw it. Pretty sure I don’t remember it verbatim.) Real Course Materials vs. A link, buried somewhere in those bookmarks. Forgot your password? These simple 27 steps will help. Professional Adult Educators vs. people who can put an audience to sleep Custom Content vs. One size fits some Where do you want to spend your training budget?   Check out our full line of classes advantedge-training.com.

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Training Vouchers Save You Money!

Did you know AdvantEdge Training & Consulting offers prepaid training vouchers for all of our training center class seats? Training vouchers can be redeemed toward class registrations, and are good for a full year. Discounts are available for purchasing multiple vouchers, starting with as few as five! We offer vouchers for all of our training center class formats and locations, including half-day and full-day classes, multi-day, and boot camps. Buy before the end of the year and get 2022 classes at 2021 prices! Contact our sales office for more information at (303) 900-8963, or [email protected].

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Emotional Intelligence, Outlook, Time Management Tips

Managing Stress during the Busy Holiday Season

It’s almost here: The busy holiday season. The old song may call it the Most Wonderful Time of the Year, but in reality it can be the most stressful time of year. Year-end projects, family gatherings, office parties, shopping for gifts, holiday baking, and all of that is on top of the usual demands of your job, life, and family! If you don’t manage you time well, it can be an exhausting season! Luckily, there are some tools and techniques that can help keep your head above the tinsel, and your holiday ducks in a row. Outlook is a great tool for managing your busy life, as you likely already know. ­­This time of year, though, it is especially important to make sure all of your appointments, deadlines, and events make it onto your calendar. Many users also keep more than one Outlook calendar, such as one for work deadlines, one for personal dates, and another for family appointments. This can be problematic when our schedules get as busy as they are during the last months of the year. A best practice, one that ensures you do not overbook yourself or forget about a scheduled event, is to keep a single schedule for all of the areas of your life. In other words, work, personal, and family dates all end up on the same unified calendar. Some users are uncomfortable with this idea, as their work schedule may be available to others, who do not need to know about an appointment with Grammy to make snickerdoodles. This concern can be addressed by using the private event function for personal events. If you feel you absolutely must maintain more than one calendar, using the Calendar Overlay function in Outlook can reduce the potential for scheduling gaffs. Another technique that can help to reduce to your year-end stress is to employ Time Chunking. We live in a society that has pushed the idea of multitasking for years. However, more and more research shows that multitasking simply does not work. Switching between tasks actually reduces your focus, and slows your productivity. Time Chunking simply means setting a time to work on similar tasks, allowing no other distractions to intrude. This technique is often used to manage emails at work, but you could employ it by chunking holiday tasks, such as dedicating one day to gift buying and wrapping, a work day to tackle nothing but year-end-reporting, etc. Focusing on a single task, or type of task, for a chunk of time will actually increase your ability to speed through them without distractions. By keeping yourself organized, and giving yourself the feeling of empowerment over the chaos of a busy time of year, it will reduce your stress and allow you to, perhaps, be in a position to actually enjoy this Most Wonderful Time of the Year. To learn more techniques to keep your schedule under control and increase your productivity, check out our Time Management with Outlook training course.

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Scheduling an Event in Outlook

Scheduling an event in Outlook might be second nature for most, but there are lots of little unfamiliar extras, such as inviting others to the events. In some cases, a user might be in charge of a company Outlook account, which means that all the invites to the company holiday party can be sent through a different account, other than your personal account. Not only can we invite others, we can upload the main flier. Outlook will even ask for responses to the invitation. To do all of this, just follow these steps: Open Outlook and navigate to the Calendars section. Once there, ensure you are on the Home tab, then go to the New group, and click New Appointment. Once the new appointment dialog box appears, fill in the appropriate date, time, and location. Even insert a copy of the flier, if you want to add it. Now we need to add invited attendees by going to the Appointment tab and clicking the Invite Attendee command, in the center of the ribbon. A new section will appear in the appointment, just above the Subject section, that looks like this: Click the To… button, and add the invitees. Select the attendees and click Required, Optional, or Resources, to load the name in the proper section, then click OK. When you are done, click the Send button, and all invitees will receive an email about the event. You can recheck the event to see who has accepted and declined the invite. In most cases, users will be able to add the event to their personal calendars. In some cases the event will show up directly in their calendar app, where they can accept or decline the event. Want to learn more ways Outlook can help you manage your busy life? Take a training class from AdvantEdge Training & Consulting.  

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Embedding Documents in Excel

Embedding documents in an Excel workbook is a technique that is not widely used, mostly because not many people know you can embed a document in a worksheet. There are three different ways to embed and/or link documents in Excel, but we are going to embed a document directly in Excel, with no links. First, what are some of the reasons I would want to embed a document in an Excel workbook? There could be any number of reasons, but the one we hear most is that it is easier to see what is being tracked with only one document open, as opposed to two or more. It keeps everything in one place! We are going to embed the holiday party flier on the same worksheet on which the attendees of the party are listed. This particular workbook is being used to track attendees for all company events, so keeping an embedded copy of the flier on the worksheet keeps the user from accidentally placing names on the wrong list. Follow the steps below to embed a document into a worksheet in Excel: Go to the worksheet in which you want to embed the document, and click the cell that would closest represent the upper-left corner of the document. For us, this will be cell G3. Click the Insert tab of the ribbon, and then the Text group drop-down menu. In some cases, the Text group will be fully visible with no drop-down menu. Click Object and a dialog box will appear. This will allow you to find the file you want to insert. Choose the Create from file tab, and click the Browse button. Navigate to find and select the document you wish to embed into the worksheet, then click Insert. Once the original dialog box returns, click OK. Your document will appear in the worksheet as a fully functioning document, which in this case is a Word document.   Learn more ways to put Excel to work for you with a onsite group or virtual training center Excel class from AdvantEdge Training & Consulting.

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Business Communications, Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence and Effective Interpersonal Communication

Emotional Intelligence and effective interpersonal communication are important tools in the workplace, but getting a handle on these skills is not always simple. Understanding the motivations of others, as well as being able to best express your ideas to others, can be central to building a strong team for any project. When these elements break down, it can lead to counterproductive interactions.  Every team member comes with their own unique set of circumstances, from their personality, history, and skills, to their own word usage and feelings about certain phrases. Our best intentions to be understood and not offend will not necessarily pave the road to a successful interaction. In one office, two employees, Erin and Trish often interact.  Erin comes from a Midwestern urban area, where the phrase “What’s up?” is often used as a way to say “Hi.” Trish is a laid-back California native who is irritated every time Erin greets her using that phrase. It makes her feel like Erin is rushing her to get to the point. This is a simple example of how communications can become problematic. Erin’s intent and Trish’s perception of this phrase is radically different. Erin could be stubborn and insist on continuing to use this phrase, as she knows she does not mean to rush Trish along, but doing so would only hurt their ability to communicate. She knows Trish hears it as a demand, no matter how much Erin explains her usage of the phrase. Erin could be offended that Trish chooses to interpret her words this way, but doing so would further break down their ability to share their thoughts with each other. This sort of miscommunication is quite common in the work place, and can severely hamper your team’s ability to achieve their objectives.  So, how can we navigate the potential pitfalls of language and our emotional responses to it? AdvantEdge Training & Consulting offers several classes that can help you get a handle on your emotional state, as well as become a master of effective interactions. Our Emotional Intelligence training course will teach you how to influence and direct your emotional states, read and influence others’ emotions, and even anticipate their behaviors. Emotional Intelligence classes will help you develop the skills to be more effective in communication, manage conflicts better, and find more common ground in your interactions. In our Effective Business Communication class, you will learn to be more effective in your conversations, gaining results that are more positive from your interactions. Managing a complex team of people? Management 101 will give you the skills you need to guide and motivate your team, as well as defuse the conflicts that often arise when varied personalities need to come together to complete tasks.   Register online or contact our sales office for more information, including private group training, at (303) 900-8963, or by filling out the Contact Us form. See our full calendar of training classes, or all available course topics.

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