Joy wants to type 2 – 8 into Excel and 8-FEB is what she keeps getting.

No. Joy doesn’t want a date, she’s already married. The goal is to offer a range of options, one of them being 2 – 8

  • 2 – 8 Hours
  • 2 – 8 Vehicles
  • 2 – 8 Employees
  • 2 – 8 anything

How do we get Excel to stop being so darned crabby?


We have to think in terms of formatting. Text format.

2 – 8 looks like a range to a human being, and for this purpose, we aren’t going to do any math with it. So, we want Excel to treat the data like text instead of numbers. This screencast shows 3 ways to get some peace and cooperation, and have the spreadsheet accept what’s been input and accept it as text format:

Joy, are you ready to tackle this when it comes up again?

photo credit: LightIsBeauty via photo pin cc