Lesson 4: Working in channels

Meet Sara.

  • Sara recently joined Acme Inc., a company just like yours.
  • Acme Inc. adopted Slack a while ago, and Sara is learning how it has changed the way the company works.
  • In this lesson, Sara wants to understand where work gets done in Slack and how to connect with the right people to move work forward.


Sara’s experience before Slack

Before Acme, Sara was used to working in email. Conversations would often become fragmented threads, and no one had the full picture of what was going on. Every conversation was private by default, because only the people who had been added to the email thread had access to the information. These communication silos made it difficult to stay aligned, track information and keep up to date.

How Acme uses Slack

  • By default, anyone at Acme can join channels in Acme’s workspace, which means everyone has the opportunity to get up to speed with the conversation so far.
  • Some conversations at Acme are confidential, so those channels are set to private.
  • People use mentions to get the attention of a specific person in a channel.

An example from Acme

What’s happening…

  1. Sara wants to get an update on hiring a new designer, so she jumps to the #hiring-designer channel.
  2. Sara mentions Harry, the recruiter, to get an update on the offer the team sent out earlier in the week.

Working in channels

Channels are the primary place to work in Slack. #proj-website is a channel. Channels have a hash icon next to them. Sara and anyone else at Acme can join channels in their workspace. This helps connect people who know about different topics. Sara has found that channels help her find answers, get context and make decisions more quickly.

Channels can also be set to private. #hiring-designer is a channel that’s been set to private, which is why it has a lock icon. Channels that have been set to private can be joined only if someone in the channel invites you.

Mention colleagues to get their attention

Sara needs to get the attention of Harry to request a hiring update. She mentions Harry directly in her message. Harry gets notified that someone needs his help, and everyone in the hiring channel stays up to date on what’s happening in the conversation.

Your next steps

💡Look at Slack and see if you can spot channels, as well as channels that have been set to private.

💡 Mention colleagues in a channel to get their attention.

Was this resource useful?



Thanks so much for your feedback!

Got it!

Thanks for your feedback.

Oops! We're having trouble. Please try again later!