Notifications in Microsoft Teams: Understanding Your Options

Part of being productive is knowing what you need to know, when you need to know it. Microsoft Teams has a healthy list of notifications to help you with that, but the options can be overwhelming. In this blog, I’ll break down those options so you can see what makes the most sense for you.

Where are they? 

Notifications are easy to find. First, click your profile picture. Then select settings, then notifications. Your choices begin there.


Three Categories

Notifications are clumped in three categories: messages, mentions, and the catch-all, other. There are thirteen features that you can tinker with and decide what notifications to receive. Each of those come with variations, which I will explain soon. But first…

What can I just turn off?

There are nine that can be. Here they are:

  1. Channel Mentions
  2. Team Mentions
  3. Chat Messages
  4. Replies to conversations I started
  5. Replies to conversations i replied to
  7. Team Membership changes
  8. Team Role changes
  9. Sound

What are my options? 

Most of your choices come down to these three. You can be notified:

  1. In the banner and email
  2. Just via the banner
  3. Or just leave it to be shown only in the feed

Those scenarios cover the nine I mentioned previously plus Personal Mentions and Followed Channels.

Three from “Other”

There are three features or options that don’t fit that pattern.

  1. Sound
  2. Email Frequency
  3. Chat with Skype for Business

Sound can be just call, mention, or chat or it can be all or off. Frequency of email can be as soon as possible, every ten minutes or every hour. Finally, Chat with Skype for Business can either be enabled or disabled. If you change that one, you’ll need to restart the app.

Full Options List for Notifications

Here are all the options for notifications as they relate to the feature listed.

All Notifications


For your most productive self, how do you set your notifications? I’d love to hear about your Microsoft Team experiences, drop me a note below!

Using the Command Line in Microsoft Teams

“Once you know what you are doing, productivity becomes your one true competitive advantage.” David Allen, the Getting Things Done guy said that. For our purposes, I am going to assume you know what you want to get done. My purpose here is to talk about productivity shortcuts coming out of the Microsoft Teams team that I find particularly useful. In my last blog, I wrote about five favorite Teams tips. Today, I’ll focus on the command line, that open box at the top of the Teams UI.

Slash and At ( aka / and @ )

There are currently seventeen slash commands. I am not sure that is their official name but to invoke them you type a “/”. According to the documentation, there are two such “commands” – the slash and the “@” command so a distinction is required.


Let’s get right to my five favorite slash commands and how they will help your daily Teams productivity.


When I am trying to find something one of my colleagues posted, I can often recall who posted, I just can’t remember where. That is the scenario this handy command covers. I type in /activity in the command line and the name of my team member and Teams will list me their recent activity, including where, what and when they posted.


Yes, Microsoft Teams has speed dial. It is the /call command. Try it. type /call then the name of your teammate and hit return. You’ll start ringing them immediately. Faster than you can say “butt dial” you’ll be connected. This is a serious power tool.


You know that moment where you need to just dog ear the corner of a book so you can pick it back up later? Teams can do that for you with the bookmark feature. To retrieve those bookmarks, invoke the /saved command. It lists your bookmarks lickety-split and provides navigation back to those posts in context.


Similar to my scenario for using the activity slash command, I can usually recall a file that I worked on recently, I just can’t remember where (again). Hitting /files returns me a list of recent files that I can choose from and dive back in.


When you need to find someone, try /org. Type it in and then start typing the name of the person you’re looking for. This slash command has the comfort of the old company phone book, but faster and with the person’s place in the organization in an easily navigable form.

Keep in mind…

There are a dozen more slash commands. You can get to the command line quickly by using the keyboard shortcut, “ctrl + e“. These commands are desktop and web features and not yet available in the mobile app. The Teams team is very open to ideas, so if you have a thought for a command, drop them a note.

I’d be interested in how you use the command line. Please leave a comment or send me a note with your ideas. Thanks!