Chris Menard's Training Roundup | Issue #4 | Excel tips and tricks, Zoom Meetings updates and more

Chris Menard's Training Roundup | Issue #4 | Excel tips and tricks, Zoom Meetings updates and more

Zoom Meetings Updates

Zoom: PowerPoint / Keynote as Virtual Background
Zoom's Virtual Background feature is trendy. It is easy to share a PowerPoint or Keynote presentations in a Zoom meeting, but now you can share your presentation as a Virtual Background and it allows your participants to view your video imposed directly on the screen share. This feature is part of Zoom 5.2.0. Watch this update here.

Zoom Spotlight Multiple Participants
Zoom now allows you to spotlight up to 9 participants for everyone in a meeting. Previously only 1 person could be featured with a spotlight. The host chooses whom to spotlight. As a host, you may spotlight video as primary speakers for all participants. The advantage of this is participants only see these speakers. This feature works with desktop client version 5.2.2 on Windows or macOS. Watch it here.

Self-select Breakout Rooms in Zoom
Zoom now allows participants to choose their own breakout rooms with no assistance from the host. This new feature in Zoom 5.3.0 allows participants to self-select their own breakout rooms. Both the host and participants need to be on Zoom 5.3.0 or higher. Check it out.

Microsoft Excel Tips and Tricks

Among others, I've started a series of videos called 'Getting started in Excel'. I've got two episodes so far as well as some tips and tricks videos. If you're a beginner at Excel and want to familiarize yourself with the basics, this is the series for you, and it's completely free. Here are some of the first videos in this series:

Getting Started with Excel | Excel Introduction 01
We cover getting started with Excel. Opening Excel, typing in text and numbers and then adding dates. We use formatting such as bold, and comma styles to make numbers easier to read. We also cover alignment - left, center, right - and more.  Watch the video.

Excel: Getting started with PivotTables
Before creating a PivotTable, there are three rules you should follow. Two are a must: no blank rows or columns in your data, make sure your data is tabular, make your data range a Table. In this video, we discuss the three rules and then make a PivotTable. We then show totals for months and car brands in the PivotTable and finally, we find a running total and then the difference. Watch this video here.

How to add running totals in Excel: Three easy methods
Running totals, also called cumulative totals, can easily be done in Microsoft Excel. There are multiple ways to do running totals. I cover three methods in this short video. My favorite method is shown and that is using PivotTables. I also do with a simple formula and show using the SUM function with absolute reference. Watch this video here.

Excel: Latest date in group with MAXIFS function or PivotTable
The MAXIFS function in Excel returns the largest numeric value that meets one or more criteria in a range of values. In this video, I use MAXIFS to calculate the latest date in a group. I also use MAXIFS to find the largest invoice amount for one client, and again I use MAXIFS to find the largest invoice amount for one client located in a certain state. The video is here.

Calculate the Compound Monthly Growth Rate (CMGR)
CMGR and CAGR are excellent tools for investments, YouTube creators, or businesses analyzing subscribers, watch time, or revenue. You can use CMGR to calculate where you will be in 6, 12, or any number of months in the future. CMGR is similar to the Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR), but monthly instead of annually. I'm using CMGR since you may not have years of data to work with, but you have months of data you can use. Learn how to calculate it here.

Microsoft Word update

Transcribe audio and share using Word for the Web
Microsoft Word for the Web allows you to transcribe audio. Word will transcribe speech from an audio file (like a Zoom meeting), into a text transcript with each speaker individually separated. You can use this for meetings or interviews. You have the ability to make edits and corrections to the transcription. You can also save the entire transcript to Word and share it. The audio file is saved in OneDrive. This works in Microsoft 365 for Word's online version. Supported browsers include the new Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome. Watch the demonstration here.

Google Meet: What's New

Blur Background and view up to 49 Participants
Google Meet now supports Blur Background and allows you to view 49 people at the same time. Blur Background helps limit distractions during meetings. When Blur Background is turned on, Google Meet will intelligently separate you from the background. This keeps you in focus during your meeting. The new grid layout allows you to view 49 people in Auto and Tiled layouts. You adjust the number of people you can view. This new feature will improve the dynamics of larger group meetings. Educators and business people will love this feature. Check it out here.

Chris Menard

Chris is a Microsoft Office Master. He trains corporate clients in Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, Word, and Outlook. Menard is a speaker for the Georgia Society of CPAs and a senior lecturer at the University of Georgia Terry College of Business. Menard's YouTube channel has over 600 technology videos. Chris works full-time as a Training Specialist for a global law firm. His office is in midtown, Atlanta.