As a global organization, we rely heavily on Slack for communicating with our teams. At the same time, we recognize that Slack can quickly become overwhelming and distracting. 


Below are a few tactics you can use to communicate effectively with your teammates, manage your Slack notifications, and focus your work time as needed. You may also be interested in checking out Slack's starter guide and tips & tricks or joining the #tech-tips channel on Slack.


Step 1: Please Complete Your Profile!


We are a growing organization with staff and partners around the world. Slack is an integral tool that helps us communicate and embrace a remote-friendly work culture. Filling out your Slack profile (including photo!) is the first step.


To edit your profile: 

  1. Go to top left where you see “B Lab”

  2. Click the down arrow

  3. Navigate to “Profile & Account”

  4. Your account will show like the image below

  5. Click “Edit Profile” and fill in the fields given!


Muting a Channel


With the exception of the b-announcements, global-announcements, and (for the foreseeable future) updates-covid-19 channels, you are welcome to mute any channels you feel are important enough to periodically check, but not so important that you need them to pop up as unread in your sidebar. Muting prevents the channel from appearing as unread unless you are directly mentioned.


To mute a channel, click on the channel name and select Mute #channel OR type /mute.


You can unmute and mute channels as you please.



Setting “Do Not Disturb”


If you have a meeting or phone call and want to let others online know that you will be slow to respond to any posts, turn on your Do Not Disturb.


You can also snooze notifications by using the /dnd command in the message box of a channel. For example, you could say: 

/dnd for 15 mins 

/dnd for 2 hours

/dnd until tonight




@here vs @channel


To get someone’s attention in a channel, type @ followed by their username (e.g. @cassy). They’ll see a red badge on the channel and be notified if they’re not online. While this is useful for important announcements, it’s hugely distracting if abused. For that reason, we ask you to please use @mentions sparingly.


@here - Notifies everyone currently online. Best for announcements relevant to team members that are currently working or available (e.g. “@here pizza is served in the lounge!”)


@channel - Notifies all team members whether they’re online or not. Use sparingly, as it is only for extremely important information that requires reading and/or response. 



Threads


If you are replying to an existing post, it’s best to create a thread attached to that post for two reasons:

  1. Threads minimize notifications for those who are not engaged in the conversation. You can also opt to notify the entire channel if your thread post is important or relevant to all. 

  2. Threads help preserve context for the conversation and tie related thoughts together.


For more information on threads, please see the Slack help center.