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What Went Wrong with the Mailing?
(7) Doing partial re-runs got me confused about the physical sequence (and hence matching) of envelopes and printouts. I wasted time sorting a pile of about 80 letters and 80 envelopes into first-name sequence, manually, then pairing them off manually.
Next Time: Do the complete envelope run followed by the complete paper run.
The word processing operation generates a file with as many sections as there are envelopes/addresses, and each section starts a new page.
I save this file as soon as it is created.
Eyeballing the entire file is a must to spot any weird names such as “Edward (‘Ed’) Johnson” or “Robert (Rob!) Brown”. Those names are to alert me before phoning, but they do not deserve to appear in that form on an envelope. The envelope should bear “Edward” and “Robert”, but the letter should bear “Ed” and “Rob”.
The smart thing to do is to edit the CSV file as these changes are noted, and then to re-run the mail merges for both the letters and envelopes.
I save both (envelopes and letters) files with a new name, and once again eyeball the complete file. Much time will be spent recovering from any errors not picked up at this stage, so three minutes re-checking the output pays off handsomely.
Toronto and Mississauga, Sunday, December 05, 2010 3:27 PM
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