Shortcuts for Flag, Category and Processed

If you are a dedicated reader of this blog, this post is for you. This post is targeted to the ones that are using a single physical folder (read “how many folders? only one“) and using search folders (read “search folders – a kind of magic“). In this post we would learn how to use the keyboard shortcuts instead of long and slowly mouse movements and clicks (why using the mouse? read “top 5 keyboard shortcuts for emails“).


Flag It

Shortcut for flagging an email can be done using the Quick Steps outlook option.


Create a new quick step as below. You can see there is a shortcut key. The available values are CTRL+SHIFT-X, where X goes from 1 to 9.


Processed It

Once you have “processed” an email and would like to move it to your single physical folder (which probably named “Processed”), you can use the quick step option as described below.


Categorize It

Applying category manually means you need to go to the email, go to the category column, right click it, and select a category. All this can be done using a single shortcut.

By now you would probably say “let’s do it using quick steps”. Well, although you can do it that way, there is a better way to apply shortcut for categories.

  • Open your categories


  • Select a shortcut key for a specific category


The shortcuts are going from CTRL-F2 to CTRL-F12. There are 2 main advantages for using this method over the quick steps:

  1. It is easier to apply with your fingers (CTRL vs. CTRL-SHIFT)
  2. Any second apply of the category-shortcut, clears the category.
    For example, let’s assume CTRL-F2 is a shortcut for “follow up with boss”. The first time I press CTRL-F2, the email is categorized as “follow up with boss”. The second time I press CTRL-F2, it clears the “follow up with boss” category from this email.  It doesn’t work that way with quick steps.

That’s it. Be a power user and use shortcuts! 


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Erez Morabia

I’m an engineer and a leader in the computer software industry which is passionate about leading teams, embracing new technologies and improving soft skills for work efficiency.

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