12 Days of Microsoft Teams | Day 5

Microsoft Teams No Nos – Avoid a Teams #fail with these fools proof avoids

Welcome to Day 5 of PixelMill’s ‘12 Days of Microsoft Teams’ series! Teams makes communicating with your co-workers more fun, but are you doing it right? Today’s tip will help you to avoid getting coal in your channel. Enjoy!

Microsoft Teams is a pretty robust tool and one that continues to add functionality. There are many ways to take advantage of Teams, but here are a few fool-proof ways to avoid a Teams #Fail no matter where you are on your Teams journey. This holiday season we offer you a way to avoid making the naughty list this year:
Not sticking to the thread
A thread is a conversation that relates to a common topic. Each channel has a conversations tab where threads live. You want to stick to the specific conversation thread to make sure everyone stays on the same page. A common mistake is neglecting to reply to the specific thread and accidentally starting a new conversation.

Forgetting to @mention someone when you need their attention
A lot is going on in Teams, so it’s crucial to use the @mention when you need someone’s attention on a particular conversation. Simply type the @ symbol and start typing their name and if they are a member of that team it will auto populated their name.  This will ensure they get notified.

Not favoriting an important Team/Channel
As we discussed in Day 4’s post, staying in the know with notifications relies heavily on managing your favorite Teams/Channels. Without favoriting a channel, it’s extremely difficult to stay up to date on what’s happening. If you need to know what is going on in that channel, make sure it’s favorited.

Too many tabs
Hick’s law states that the time it takes for users to make a decision increases as the number of choices offered increase. Let’s use Netflix as an example. Imagine getting to the app and being offered a list of 100 movies and shows without categories like ”because you watched, continue watching, dramas, comedy, tv series, etc.” Scrolling and reading through all of the options to make a decision is going to take a much longer than if Netflix displayed the top 10 options that are most relevant to you.
The same goes for Tabs in Teams. You’re limited by how many tabs are visible without a drop down in Teams, so be sure that you don’t overdo it.  Microsoft Teams allows for up to 30 characters in your Tab title before it truncates it. So, depending on the length of characters of your Tab Title, it’s best to limit the number of tabs to 6-8 items. Make sure your most important tabs are one of your first 6-8, any more than that will likely be hidden in a dropdown.

Forgetting background blur for video calls
We all remember this fabulous #fail.

Avoid this one with a click! To start a meeting with background blur, move the blur slider—the one to the right of the video slider—to the right on the Choose your audio and video settings screen when you’re joining the meeting. Note: this only works for scheduled meetings.
To turn on background blur during a meeting, click more options (…) —-> Blur my background.
Note: Not all devices support background blur yet.

Duplicating existing Channels/Teams/Groups
This one is pretty simple and self-explanatory, but worth noting. Before you get excited and start a new channel, Team or Group, be sure that one doesn’t exist already.
Turning “General” into a hodgepodge 
It’s easy to let a General channel get away from you. “I’m not sure where this should go, but I want everyone to see it, so General makes sense. Right?” Maybe. Probably not. You must properly plan and set a solid Teams structure before diving in. This includes explicitly stating how your General channel should be and shouldn’t be used, so you don’t end up with a conglomeration of information that is not truly related.
Looking to make the most out of Microsoft Teams, but don’t know where to start? Have no fear! One of our Teams experts would love to chat with you today!

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