13 Tips to Get the Most out of Slack

What is your No. 1 tip for getting more out of Slack?

The following answers are provided by members of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

1. Download the Mobile App

Thomas CullenHaving access to Slack on your phone gives you the ability to quickly respond and drive your business forward. It is faster than email and an easy way to stay in touch.  – Thomas CullenLaunchPad Lab


2. Add Integrations so It Becomes Your Notification Hub

Chris BrissonWe use Slack for all sorts of notifications in our business, from sales leads to down servers. By integrating Slack with apps like Github, SalesForce, MailChimp and Zapier, it has become our main notification hub for pretty much everything.  – Chris BrissonCall Loop


3. Turn Off Everything Else

Ben LyonOur team spans four countries on two continents. Once we made the decision to use Slack, we created an implementation plan, communicated it to the team and told everyone that we would stop using other communication platforms (Gchat, WhatsApp, etc.) by a certain date. Everyone knew what to expect and when to expect it, so the transition was flawless.  – Ben LyonKopo Kopo, Inc.

4. Tag People for Quicker Responses

Kenny NguyenIt’s very simple, but extremely effective. By tagging people in your messages, you’re more able to hold them accountable for a response. As chatrooms typically get filled with a lot of conversation, it’s important for people to know when they’re being spoken to, rather than when they’re just reading a statement.  – Kenny NguyenBig Fish Presentations

5. Star Comments or Files to Reference Later

Andrew SchragePut a star next to any comment, file or message that you need to act on but don’t have time at that moment. It serves similarly as to a to-do list, and you can access all items with stars by opening the menu Flex pane.  – Andrew SchrageMoney Crashers Personal Finance


6. Give Your Team a Tutorial

Miles JenningsAlthough Slack is very user-friendly, a tutorial of this platform would be much appreciated by your employees, especially if they are switching from an existing messaging app. Show them the features of the app, what your team will be using it for specifically, how they can quickly and easily utilize it, and explain why it will benefit them. Your team will all be on the same page.  – Miles JenningsRecruiter.com

7. Utilize the Pin Tool

Josh KellerThe Pin function has been the most valuable function I’ve found in Slack. It makes documents and messages readily available for when you need them now or later. With other chat tools I’ve spent a lot of time searching through messages for information — the Pin option eliminates that. It’s by far the best tool I’ve used on Slack.  – Josh Keller, Union Square Media

8. Use Keyboard Shortcuts

dave-nevogtKeyboard shortcuts are the key to getting more done in less time with Slack. I use “Ctrl + K” to quickly flip between channels and conversations, but there are a host of other shortcuts — just hit “Ctrl + ?” to see a list of them all. The time you save from using keyboard shortcuts helps you to focus more on the actual substance of the conversations, and ultimately, on your work more too.  –Dave NevogtHubstaff.com

9. Foster Community

Aron SusmanIn Slack we are able to create a private sphere without threatening our sense of community. For us, it’s personal relationships that form the web of a team-wide sense of connection. Nobody ever has to feel excluded because everyone is equally accessible. We encourage contribution to the general chat with ideas, articles (work-related or not) and funny things that have happened to us during the day.  – Aron SusmanTheSquareFoot

10. Limit Channels and Use “@” Tags

Brittany HodakLimit the channels your team creates. Although it’s helpful to delineate by project or topic, having too many chances to check can getconfusing. Try for no more than six or eight channels company wide. Also, use “@” tags for action items. That way, in addition to scanning channels to keep up to date, team members will get notifications as needed.  – Brittany HodakZinePak

11. Type “/collapse” to hide GIF’s

Reuben YonatanWhen I use Slack, my team uses GIF’s to express themselves all the time. And when we start talking business again, we sometimesget lost in unread messages full of images or GIFs. Using the “/collapse” command hides them whenever you want, so you can actually get some work done by making distracting messages go away. To see them again, you can hit the small arrows next to GIF links.    – Reuben YonatanGetVoIP

12. Make Sure Your Team Uses It

Ross CohenMy number one tip for getting more out of Slack is to encourage the entire team to use it as a first option for communication and collaboration. It’s amazing how many more decisions and inputs you can get through Slack’s instant communications, as opposed to waiting on emails or setting up conference calls. I personally am a fan of “command/ctrl T” as a means of quick switching between conversations.  – Ross CohenBeenVerified

13. Read the Slack Blog

Andrew SaladinoMost people don’t realize that the Slack Blog is an amazing source of information for cool features and integration options that you never knew about. There’s a steep learning curve with Slack and it’s a bit overwhelming at times. To make it more manageable, I make time to go through each blog post in detail and look for ways to apply the ideas to my business and improve overall efficiency.  – Andrew SaladinoKitchen Cabinet Kings

The Young Entrepreneur Council

The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.