Maximize team productivity with Slack by embracing best practices like threads, customized notifications, tool integration, shortcuts, and avoiding irrelevant messages.
For church teams, using Slack as the team communication tool can be crucial to ensuring that collaborative projects are delivered effectively and efficiently. Slack is one of the most popular instant messaging platforms on the market today. This tool has become indispensable in work environments, facilitating real-time messaging, document sharing, video calls, and much more.
We’ve been using Slack for several years with our team now. Whenever a new team member or outside freelancer or client starts working with us, we invite them to join our Slack workspace to ensure seamless communication and collaboration.
But how can you get the best out of Slack productivity as an individual team member? In this article, I will share twelve do’s and don'ts to make sure your Slack experience is equally enjoyable and productive.
12 Best Practices For Using Slack to Boost Team Productivity
1. Do use threads
Instead of bombarding your colleagues with multiple comments on one post, use threads to keep the conversation organized and easily referable. This helps to prevent confusion while ensuring that everyone’s suggestions and questions are addressed.
2. Don’t overuse @channel
Avoid using ‘@channel’ to ping everyone in a channel unless it's vital or relevant to all members. More often than not, overuse of @channel can lead to irrelevant notifications and hinder productivity.
3. Do use the search feature
Slack has a powerful search feature that can help you find messages, files, and relevant conversations—either from the past, or from other team member discussions that you weren't actively involved in then.
4. Don't use it just as a dumping ground
Make sure to properly format your content so it's more useful to team members. Use the formatting options to emphasize key points. Bullet points make your messages easier to read.
5. Do customize your notifications
Because Slack messages can come from different channels, customize your notifications to get notified only when it matters. This will help you stay focused on critical tasks as opposed to constantly getting interrupted by unnecessary alerts.
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6. Don’t ignore ‘away’ status
When you see a team member’s status is set to ‘away,’ don’t expect them to respond immediately. Work with flexibility and compassion, knowing that work-life balance is important.
7. Do integrate other tools
Slack integrates with other tools, like Google Drive, Trello, and Asana, just to name a few. Discover and integrate the tools which you and your team use frequently. This will make it easy to share documents and have important conversations in other tools, without having to switch back to Slack frequently.
8. Don't silo info in direct messages
Slack's super power is search and transparency across teams asynchronously. Don't DM team members with project details that really should be in a public channel. When details get stuck in a private DM, it hinders the intent to put all project-related information into a central place where everyone can find it.Slack's super power is search and transparency across teams. Don't DM project details that should be in a public channel. When information is stuck in a private chat, it hinders the intent of centralized collaboration. Click To Tweet
9. Don’t make side conversations
Slack uses channels to keep things organized. Make sure the content and comments you're posting go into the appropriate channels. Avoid posting comprehensive conversations that might touch on multiple topics in a single post when the details should be distributed across multiple channels. Otherwise, relevant conversations can get lost, and team members won't benefit from your contributions.
10. Do use shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts help boost your work speed on Slack. With shortcuts, repeatable tasks like formatting, emoji reactions, and channel switching, become more accessible and less time-consuming. Use them frequently to make the most out of Slack.
Check out this “keyboard shortcuts” article on Slack for some great tips.
11. Do use reminders
If you receive a message that you don't have the time to address immediately, set reminders to address it later. With this, you won't forget about vital information to avoid confusion.
12. Do use reactions
Slack reactions are a great way to acknowledge a message without having to send a full reply. It's also a great way to show appreciation and support for your team members.
Here’s what Alex S., a CEO from a remote team, had to say about Slack’s impact on the group’s productivity and communication:
“Slack is a game-changer for remote teams. As a distributed team, we rely on Slack to stay connected and informed. We use it to discuss projects, share files, and collaborate on ideas. The ability to create channels for different topics and teams makes it easy to organize conversations and find information quickly. Slack has significantly improved our productivity, and we highly recommend it.” – Alex S., CEO
Slack is a powerful tool for team communication that creates a record of discussions and collaborations on projects. Once your team gets the hang of using Slack, you'll be thankful for the easy-to-access information that's available at all times.
10,000 Foot View Of Getting The Most Out Of Slack
Slack has transformed work collaboration, and it's here to stay. As a team member, it's essential to embrace the platform's good practices. Use threads, customize your notifications, integrate other tools, use shortcuts and reminders, and avoid irrelevant messages that can disrupt productivity.
Overall, ensuring that you use Slack professionally and productively can be the key to the success of your team. By following these best practices, it's possible to maintain a focused approach while maximizing productivity in the work environment.
The more you apply best practices, the more valuable Slack becomes as a collaboration tool.
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