Few brands, like Google, have become common words in our everyday language. Slack is one of the few others to have this honor. While one Google teammate gives advice for spotting a snag, another is butting heads that the solution is after him.
For many, Slack has overtaken email as the dominant method of communication. And just as some grapple with unmanageable email inboxes, many others are trying to tame Slack.
So here are 12 helpful tips for getting the most out of Slack and leveraging it to improve what you do across the rest of your suite.
1. Set reminders for important tasks in channels or direct messages
You may have used or heard of Slack reminders. Either to remind someone when you’re always on vacation or simply so you don’t forget to do that improvement, schedule a reminder to stay on top of important tasks.
Use the slash command to set up reminders in channels or direct messages.
Editor’s Note: There are three types of slash commands: those created by Slack, commands created by third-party apps, and commands customized by your organization. You can learn more about how to use the slash commands for Slack in This article.
2. Create keyword notifications for specific updates
Feel overwhelmed by all the notifications from countless channels that are important but take too long to follow through? You can mute channels while setting up keyword notifications, so you’ll only be alerted when certain terms appear.
Open the Alerts section under Slack’s preferences and select the “My keywords” section to set up your list. As new projects come out and others complete, refine your keyword list to stay on top of only the most relevant updates.
3. Schedule a meeting without leaving a void
Having to navigate between programs or apps is probably the biggest source of wasted time. Arguably, scheduling meetings is one of the most common everyday tasks. Good news: You can do this without leaving Slack and start having less crazy days.
First, you must download a file Google Slack Calendar or the Outlook Slack calendar Implementation. Then, when chatting with a contact, tap the lightning icon for a menu with the option to schedule the meeting.
4. Keep key people and channels on top
To avoid scrolling and searching for key contacts, use the star feature to lock a person or channel so that they always appear at the top. A starred category will then appear in the left navigation panel, to help prioritize contacts or channels you never want to miss.
5. Integrate your emails with Slack
Discussing something as a group via Slack is often easier than discussing in email, especially if there are many recipients involved. Slack can help here by taking advantage Slack’s ability to receive incoming emails.
Set up an email address that Slack can use as a recipient. Then, automatically or manually forward the mail to that address. Then you (or Slack channel recipients if you’re using a channel) will get the email within the channel and everyone can chime in more easily.
6. Sort Slack channels into sections for quick browsing
Another organizational hack is consolidating channels into groups. Some common grouping techniques are to organize channels by team, project topic, or deliverable timeframe.
Since the sections are editable, you can move channels from one group to another as you would emails from one folder to another.
By grouping channels into sections, you can then reduce all but the most important section while focusing your attention on the most important conversations.
7. Send messages directly from any text box with /msg
Wouldn’t it be nice to not have to search for a contact to message them? This is indeed possible. Send a message to anyone from any text box using the /msg command.
8. Leverage the workflow builder to streamline recurring requests
If you find yourself frequently being asked the same set of questions, use Slack workflow builder To create intake forms.
Not only will this save you time by receiving all the information you need at once, but it will also help the inquiring party understand what you need to help them. No more stumbling back and forth information gathering. Get it all at once and repeat for anyone else who inquires.
9. Use Slack with your project management tools
While all of the project management tools are well designed, they come with the challenge of having to manage them as well as the project management they are meant to simplify. Sometimes managing a project management tool can seem like as much work as the project itself.
Slack can also alleviate the need to work on two separate platforms by allowing notifications from project management tools.
Most of them—such as Asana, Trello, or Monday.com—have integration with Slack to support duplicate notifications where alerts go to Slack over appearing within the project management provider’s own interface.
10. Get updates via RSS feed link
On rare occasions, you may actually want more Slack updates. When the seller launches a new service, the customer makes a major announcement or about big events like the Super Bowl or elections. You may find yourself needing all the updates you can collect.
An RSS feed is a great help in these cases. Even better is an RSS feed connected directly to your Slack, where you can easily forward it to colleagues or save it for reference. Not all RSS feeds may work with Slack, but they can point to a file those that do.
Approach 2023 and Slack’s next encounter with optimism. Never forget to water your plant, miss your customer’s earnings call, and limit notifications to the ones that really matter with the keywords on your mind.
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