Move fast throughout a workbook

Be the best in your office

I've used the following tips throughout my career. I'd be unemployed without them.

Ctrl Arrow

Use this to move to the end or beginning of a row or column. This will save you time navigating large worksheets. I remember using this at a multinational corporation with the CFO and executive compensation manager looking over my shoulder while I completed a quick report for them. All they could say was, Wow, you're fast. Move up by using Crtl Up Arrow. Move down by using Ctrl Down Arrow. Move right by using Ctrl Right Arrow. Move left by using Ctrl Left Arrow.


Use this to enter inside of cell without using your mouse. This has saved me countless hours since I first learned it from a manager at a multinational corporation in 2000. It saved me time because my hands remained on the keyboard. My other options would be to double-click the cell or use the mouse to move the cursor to the top of the workbook for the data entry bar.

Ctrl Page Down

Use this to move from one sheet to the adjacent sheet. Another time saver and another time to wow your co-workers.

Group Columns

Use this to park columns without forgetting where you parked them. I like this instead of hiding columns because Excel marks the location of grouped columns. It puts a symbol above the columns that are parked. It makes it easy for me to identified columns that are parked.

Paste Special

I wowed an executive at a startup with this one. Someone had sent him an Excel file. He wanted to add his data to the file by cutting and pasting. Unfortunately, he wanted to keep the formatting of the receiving file. He tried for 20 minutes and failed. He called me from down the hall and I solved his problem in 2 minutes.

Learn how to use the sum and count feature on the bottom right edge of a workbook

Use this to quickly sum all the highlighted cells or count all the highlighted cells. Sometimes I get lazy and other times too many things to compute. I've used this tip at least once a week. It will sum all the numbers that I highlight when I'm spot checking a workbook's calculation or number of entries. It is a great tip save typing and time.

Use simple and consistent formatting

This is tough to explain, but it has definitely separated my summaries from the competition. It makes mine easier on the eyes. It also makes it look like I care about my job. It's like wearing polished shows. You can go without, but why look so sloppy? I always use the top 2 rows for the title and date of my tables or summaries. I bold my headings and use a single line to underline column headings. I separate each column with a narrow borderless column.

Learn how to use the vLookup formula

Another tough one to explain and learn. Please look it up in Excel's help tool. It is worth every hour it takes to master. My first boss out of college had to show me this one. I never heard of it until she showed me. It is a definite time saver and error preventer.