Function: LEFT / RIGHT & LEN

Time to learn: 15 minutes

This is a text function that gets you specific parts of a text sentence.

Here’s an example:

=LEFT(A1,3)

Like all formulas, begin with a ‘=’ and that ‘(‘ and ‘)’ would frame the contents. So counting from the LEFT, we get the first 3 letters.

Here’s an example of the RIGHT function:

=RIGHT(A2,5)

So, like the LEFT function, we count from the RIGHT and get the first 5 letters.

LEN

The LEN function counts the number of letters there are in a cell. LEN is short for length.

Here’s an example:

=LEN(A1)

We get 4 from counting the number of letters in ‘Here’.

Here’s something extra someone taught me:

=LEFT(A1,LEN(A1)-9)

This is a little more complex, but does something interesting. It takes every letter of cell A1 EXCEPT the last 9 items, which in this case is ‘sentence.’. Yup, inclusive of the period.

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