Meet the Instructor: Craig Gerdes
Meet Craig Gerdes, one of Centriq’s corporate trainers! Craig teaches Microsoft 365 and Office desktop classes, along with Professional Development courses. He has worked in education for over 30 years and is excited to teach you what he knows. Learn more about Craig and his favorite apps to teach below!
Tell us about yourself and how you got into technical training.
I have worked in Education and Training for over 30 years in a variety of roles and settings. It started when I was a Business and Computer teacher and then later as an Ed Tech Trainer working with teachers integrating technology into lessons and then as an Instructional Designer creating online classes and webinars for a major university and a national organization.
what classes do you teach at centriq?
I teach most of the Microsoft 365 applications and all the Office desktop apps including the not–as–widely–used ones such as Access, Visio, and Project. Also, a series of courses in Professional Development (ProDev) such as Communication, Leadership, and Time Management. I also teach Crystal Reports and other courses as requested such as Adobe Acrobat or Windows 10.
What is your favorite office desktop class to teach and why?
Excel in general. It is such a powerful and useful program. There is always something new to learn. No one person probably knows everything there is to know in Excel. Specifically, the Pivot Table class is my favorite.
what is your favorite m365 app class to teach and why?
Teams or OneNote. They are so versatile and can be used with so many other apps.
What is your favorite professional development class to teach and why?
There are 3 that go together and complement each other well, and they are Conflict, Emotional Intelligence, and Crucial Conversations. These are tough topics for everyone, and everyone can improve in these areas including me.
what are people overlooking when it comes to Onenote?
I would say how easy it is to integrate other apps with it. For example, easily sending a Word document or an Outlook email message as a page. Another would be to add a file not as an attachment but as a link to the file on OneDrive so that when it is updated in OneDrive it is also updated in OneNote.
I also think the mobile app on your phone makes it easy to forward news items from LinkedIn or Twitter and to easy dictate notes or record messages. Sticky Notes will show up in OneNote and Outlook.
how can organizations incorporate microsoft apps into their arsenal of workplace apps?
The best way to do that is to use Teams as the front-end app to integrate those other apps. For example, in a Teams channel you can add apps such as Planner, OneNote, Word, Excel, Forms, Stream and more.
The first thing to think about is to examine your current workflows and processes and determine if using the M365 apps will improve your communication, collaboration, productivity, and making a digital transformation makes sense. For example, instead of sending a companywide email message, add a post in a Teams channel or a SharePoint communication site.
what’s your favorite tip or trick with the m365 products? any more tricks/m365 advice you can give us?
• Always click the ellipses (3 dots) for more options
• Realize that some features will only be available using the online app while other features may only be available on the desktop app.
• Experiment. Sometimes you just have to try things out and see what works and what doesn’t.
• Read blogs, watch videos, take classes.
Are you ready to sign up for your next class with Craig? Contact us or fill out the form and one of our Customer Success Specialists will help you get started!