Communicating with a Contact

You can send messages to any of your contacts, arrange meetings, assign tasks , or even send a letter to a contact from within Outlook (this also includes any distribution lists that you have created in the Contacts folder). To communicate with a contact, make sure you're in the Contacts folder. You do not need to open the specific contact's information window to perform any of the following procedures.

Sending Messages

To send a message to a contact, you must make sure you've entered an e-mail address in the General tab of the Contact dialog box for that particular contact. If Outlook cannot locate the e-mail address, it displays a message dialog box letting you know.

To send a message from the Contacts folder, select the contact, select Actions , and then select New Message to Contact (or you can right-click the contact or the distribution list and select New Message to Contact from the shortcut menu that appears).

In the Untitled - Message dialog box, enter the subject and message and set any options you want. When you're ready to send the message, click the Send button.

Scheduling a Meeting with a Contact

To schedule a meeting with a contact (or with contacts contained in a distribution list), you must first select the contact or distribution list (as with sending mail messages, the contacts involved must have an e-mail address). After you've selected the contact or list, select Actions , and then select New Meeting Request to Contact to open the Untitled - Meeting dialog box.

Enter the subject, location, time, date, and other information you need to schedule the meeting, and then notify the contact by sending an invitation (invitations are sent automatically during the process of creating the meeting). For more information about scheduling meetings, see Lesson 13, "Planning a Meeting."

Assigning a Task to a Contact

As with mail messages and meetings, for you to assign a task to an individual, that person's contact information must include an e-mail address. To assign a task to a contact, select the contact (tasks cannot be assigned to distribution lists), select Actions , and then select New Task for Contact . The Task dialog box appears. Enter the subject, due date, status, and other information, and then send the task to the contact; just click the Send Task button on the task's toolbar. For detailed information about assigning tasks, see Lesson 14, "Creating a Task List."

Sending a Letter to a Contact

If you want to create a hard copy letter and send it using " snail mail" (that is, sending it using the postal system), Outlook can help you create the letter based on the information in a particular Contact's record. Outlook uses the Microsoft Word Letter Wizard to help you create a letter to send to a contact. Within the Word Letter Wizard, you follow directions as they appear onscreen to complete the text of the letter.


Word Must Be Installed to Use the Word Letter Wizard You must have Microsoft Word installed on your computer to take advantage of the feature discussed in this section. If you are running Outlook as a standalone version and have not installed other Office applications such as Word, you will not be able to take advantage of the integration features that Office offers to each component application such as Outlook.

To send a letter to the contact, select the contact in the Contacts folder and choose Actions , and then select New Letter to Contact . Word opens the Letter Wizard onscreen. The Letter Wizard helps you format and complete the letter (see Figure 11.6). Just follow the onscreen directions to create the letter.

Figure 11.6. Use Word's Letter Wizard to create a letter to a contact.


Calling a Contact

Another obvious way to communicate with a contact is over the telephone. For Outlook to dial the phone number for you, your computer must be configured with a modem that can dial out for you. With the right equipment, Outlook makes it easy for you to make a phone call to a contact by dialing the phone number for you.

For Outlook to manage your calls, you must have a modem hooked to your computer that can dial out for you. If you're in a networked environment that has access to a network modem pool, you can also dial out using your computer. The line you dial out on, however, must also be accessible by your telephone.

To initiate a phone call to a contact, select the contact in the Contact list and follow these steps:

  1. graphics/newcontact.gif Select Actions , point at Call Contact , and then select the appropriate phone number from the cascading menu that appears (all the phone numbers for the selected contact appear, including business, home, and fax). You can also click the Dial button on the Standard toolbar and select the appropriate phone number from the drop-down list. In both cases, the New Call dialog box appears (see Figure 11.7).

    Figure 11.7. You can initiate phone calls from Outlook without having to dial the number.


  2. Click the Start Call button to allow Outlook to dial the contact's phone number using your modem.

  3. The Call Status dialog box appears. Pick up your phone and click the Talk button in the Call Status dialog box. This engages the phone and you can speak to your contact when they answer your call.

Microsoft Office 2003 All-in-One
Microsoft Office 2003 All-in-One
Year: 2002
Pages: 660
Authors: Joe Habraken

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