Color-Coding Your Outlook Calendar

    June 23, 2003

Outlook XP offers a new feature that allows you to color-code appointments and meetings. If you use the Outlook Calendar to track a variety of appointments and meetings, color-coding will allow you to quickly and easily distinguish between the various types.

You can keep your color-coding very simple (for example, choosing one color for work-oriented items and another for personal items), or, with up to ten different colors to choose from, you can get pretty fancy. For example, you can choose to assign one color for personal appointments and another for work appointments, then another color for personal meetings and another for work-related meetings, and so on. Get as creative as you like! To assign a color to an appointment or meeting, do the following:

1. In Outlook, select your Calendar.

2. Right-click on the appointment or meeting you want to color-code. The shortcut menu opens.

3. Choose Label from the shortcut menu, and then choose the desired color.

By default, Outlook offers ten different colors labeled with ten different text titles (such as None, Important, Business, Personal, Vacation, etc.). The colors cannot be changed, but the text labels can be modified to make them more useful to you. To edit a label, do the following:

1. Choose Label from the Edit menu.

2. Choose Edit Labels from the Label submenu.

3. Click in the label field next to the label color you wish to modify and edit as desired.

4. Click OK.

That’s all there is to it – you are on your way to becoming more organized!

Beth Sunny and Karin Rex share their extensive knowledge in IT and training as freelance writers for Don’t miss their training tips along with insights from other experienced trainers in’s “Focus On Training” newsletter. To subscribe, visit