Mike Song Blog

Crazy Useful Excel Tip! (It’s Magic!)

How to Separate First Name and Last Name into Separate Columns!



We often receive messy data. For example, a spreadsheet contains cells with a person’s first and last name inside of one cell. When this happens, you can’t create a mailmerge because it would read, “Dear Harold Hamster” instead of “Dear Harold”.

Here is a crazy useful Excel tip that overcomes this challenge. Create headings for First Name and Last Name and then copy the first, first name into the first, first name cell under the corresponding heading. Do the same thing with the first last name. Then, place your mouse in the second cell under the name you entered and click Control + E. Like magic, Excel will take all the first names and place them in that column. Repeat for last name and you are done in a flash!

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