You’ve KonMaried your closet. You’ve made strides toward Inbox Zero. You’ve unburdened yourself of your old tweets, and now you feel free as a bird. The one thing left to do: find harmony in your digital work-life by tidying up your Slack.
If you’re one of the 8 million people who uses Slack as an intraoffice communication platform, then you’re likely well aware of how slovenly the app can be. Slack is a time-saver, and Slack is a time-suck. Slack liberates your inbox, lets you organize office chats around any topic you choose, and—perhaps best of all—equips you to create custom emoji of your colleagues’ faces. Slack also bombards you with notifications, leads to superfluous conversation, and has likely stolen precious hours of your workplace productivity.
Time to clean it up. Use these tips to whip your Slack into shape.
Tidy Up Channels
Take an audit of your channel subscriptions. Maybe you joined an event-specific chat that’s been dormant for months, or you still belong to #fishchat long after the office fish died. You can leave these channels by selecting the channel name, navigating to the gear icon at the top, and choosing “Leave Channel.” For channels you can’t quite bear to leave but don’t need to check very often, choose “Mute Channel” instead. This will inoculate you from notifications without sacrificing your membership to the group.
Next, organize your channels by importance. Channels you check multiple times per day should get a “star.” This will send them to the top of the sidebar. Select the channel you want to prioritize, then click the star icon at the top of the channel, just beneath the channel name.
Hide everything else. (Yes, really. Just do it.) You’ve denoted your most important subscriptions; everything else is just clutter. To do this, click your name at the top left corner of Slack, then select Preferences. Click on “Sidebar,” then select “Unreads and starred conversations.” This will keep your starred channels within view, and will show unread direct messages, but won’t display everything else. See? Tidy!
You’ll want to know when someone pings #snackchat about the cupcakes in the sales department. But when someone annoyingly alerts @here about their personal IT crisis? You don’t need that blowing up your workspace. Customize your notification settings by navigating to the gear icon in the top right corner of a channel. You can set alerts for all messages, just direct messages, or no messages—with different settings for desktop and mobile.
You can also set times when Slack won’t send you notifications at all, like after you’ve gone home for the day. Enable an automatic time frame for Do Not Disturb Mode by navigating to Preferences > Do Not Disturb. For more temporary leaves of absence, you can set your status to “Away” by clicking your icon and selecting “Set yourself to away.”
Sometimes, though, you need a reprieve a little more quickly—like when you’re sharing your screen in a meeting and that one co-worker won’t stop Slacking you GIFs. For that, simply type /dnd in any channel and add a length of time (say, “30 minutes” or “today”). It’ll shut your notifications up on the spot.
All this tidying up might make you want to streamline your interface. To switch to a more minimalist view, head to Preferences > Messages & Media and select “Compact.” (Your default is set to “Clean.”) This removes user avatars, so more messages fit on the screen at a given time. You can also minimize image or GIF previews with the command /collapse.
To further customize your view, change the theme colors. Navigate to Preferences > Sidebar > Theme to browse such color combinations as “aubergine” and “choco mint.”
Customize Your Greeting
Each time you log into Slack, remind yourself of why you’re there. (It’s to work, remember? Not just to trade memes with your coworkers all day.) You can create a custom loading message to greet you each time you sign on. Find your workspace name in the top left corner and select “Customize Slack.” From there, choose Loading Messages > Add a custom loading message > Add message.
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social experiment by Livio Acerbo #greengroundit #wired https://www.wired.com/story/slack-tips-and-tricks