Navigating the landscape of remote work and dispersed teams can be a challenge, especially when it comes to cultivating a strong company culture. Leveraging your existing tech-stack, where your team is already spending the bulk of their time, can serve as an important catalyst for organic culture-building. One key tool is Slack.

Slack has revolutionized team communication and collaboration, and can be a wonderful canvas for fostering a strong and cohesive company culture. We put together a list of the best Slack channels, apps, and custom emojis you can leverage to strengthen relationships and overall fulfillment at your company. Ready to dive in?

Channels

Slack channels aren’t just digital spaces for sending messages—they're practical tools for building a cohesive work culture. Creating dedicates spaces for both professional and personal discussion is the first key step to leveraging slack for culture-building. With the right channel moderation, your team should feel empowered to leverage these channels for collaboration, filling them with your team’s unique personality and flavor. Here are some of the best channels to include in your Slack workspace:

Slack Channel Channel Description
#wins A place for celebrating wins at the company, whether it’s a revenue milestone, a new launch, or a team member’s personal achievement.
#pets, #dogs, #cats A place to share pet love, especially photos and videos of your team members’ furry friends.
#ama, #exec-ama, #ceo-ama A place to ask honest questions, either for the team at large or for ceos and executives.
#suggestion-box A place for bottoms-up idea generation, where team members across the company can share their suggestions for improving the product, process or anything else.
#running, #movies, #books A place for team members to share photos and videos, recommendations, accomplishments and more relating to their specific hobbies from running to books.
#kudos A place for team members to celebrate each other, be it a job well done on handling a customer escalation or the celebration of a few years of company dedication on a work anniversary.
#learning A place to share content and resources, either as they relate to the company’s industry or general personal and professional development.
#kiddos, #family A place to share the joys of family and kids with the broader team.
#hiring A place for hiring managers to share their open roles and ask for referrals or for team members to share those roles on LinkedIn and other recruiting platforms.
#customer-feedback A place to share feedback from customers, be it praise or constructive feedback.
#random A place to share anything and everything non-work related that might not have another home in Slack.

Applications

Slack applications can help you put culture-building on autopilot. From recognition platforms to team-building exercises seamlessly integrated into your workspace, these applications bring practical solutions to the forefront, enhancing the everyday experiences of team members. Set them up thoughtfully up-front, and these apps can be a low-effort way to engage collaboratively. Here are some of the best apps to integrate into your Slack workspace:

Slack App Description Key Features Pricing
🧀 Ricotta Watercooler games, trivia quizzes and ice breakers built for team building. Trivia and Photo Quizzes: async text and photo-based quizzes, with option for recurring quizzes • Watercoolers and ice breaker games: games like “this or that” or “two truths and a lie” • 2-player games: games like “tic-tac-toe” and “connect4” • Social word games: games like “hangman” and “word of the day” Free Plan: limited to Icebreaker Questions, Coworker Icebreakers, and Practice Quizzes • Paid Plans: Basic plan at $24 per month(annual billing) and $34 per month (monthly billing) for unlimited features and usage up to 50 users. Growth plan at $39 per month(annual billing) and $54 per month (monthly billing) for unlimited features and usage up to 250 users. Enterprise plan at $79 per month(annual billing) and $99 per month (monthly billing) for unlimited features and usage up to 750 users.
🕺 Giphy Online library of animated GIFs built to liven up discussion. [text]: text-based GIF search in chat interface with options to shuffle • Find and share a Clip: structured video search with easy share functionality and options to shuffle • Find and share a GIF: structured GIF search with easy share functionality and options to shuffle Free Plan: All features are free
🪖 Troops Intelligent alerts, CRM insights and inline editing for Salesforce built to drive deeper collaboration and celebrate wins. Signals: real-time, customizable notifications to deliver insights, information and reminders • Deal Rooms: notifications for sharing notes / docs and recent movements in deals. • Approvals: approval requests to the right people for quick decision making Free Plan: N/A • Paid Plans: Starter plan at $19 per user per month and $0 platform fee for 1 source, 1 workspace and 1 channel. Standard plan at $19 per user per month and custom platform fee for 2 sources, 2 workplaces and unlimited channels. Pro plan at $19 per user per month and customer platform fee for 3 sources and unlimited workplaces and channels. Users are defined as team members who receive direct messages, update data sources, are referenced in a Troops signal or are a Troops admin.
Candor Tools built to put your team culture on autopilot. Engage and Collaborate*: share, react, and start conversations • Create Belonging*: get to know your team and onboard new teammates • Strengthen Culture*: stay on top of team rituals (give shoutouts, celebrate your values, and more!) Free Plan: All features are free
🤖 Geekbot Tools to automate daily standups, retros, surveys, poll and more. Robust Templates*: dozens of templates for daily syncs, team bonding and more • Happiness Tracking*: natural language analysis to track team morale. • Analytics*: data-driven insights to understand team trends Free Plan: limited to 10 users (*) Features available on the free plan. • Paid Plans: Scale-up plan at $2.5 per user per month for annual billing and $3 per user per month for monthly billing. Enterprise plan available at custom pricing.
🍩 Donut Bot Tools like introductions, onboarding workflows and automated team celebrations built for effective communication. Intros*: directly connect team members • Onboarding*: workflows with polls and task assignment for streamlined onboarding. • Celebrations*: automated celebration reminders for work anniversaries, birthdays, and holidays • Watercooler*: automated conversation starters Free Plan: limited to 24 user pairings, 12 default watercooler topics, and 24 celebration messages per month all in 1 channel (*) Features available on the free plan. • Paid Plans: Standard plan starting at $49 per month for unlimited usage and annual billing and $59 per month for unlimited usage and monthly billing. Plan pricing varies based on number of team members. Enterprise plan available at custom pricing. Most comprehensive Premium plan starting at $99 per month for annual billing and $119 per month for monthly billing.
🐦 Polly Tools like polls, surveys, standups and trivia built for instant engagement. Native*: directly in the chat interface with the slash command • Single and multi-question*: option to send polls with one or more questions. • Pre-built templates*: ready-to-go questions for common use cases • Social games*: live, interactive games like trivia and hot takes Free Plan: limited to 25 responses per creator per month. (*) Features available on the free plan. • Paid Plans: Team plan at $1 per user per month for annual billing and $2 per user per month for monthly billing. Enterprise plan available at custom pricing.
📊 Simple Poll Tools like quick polls and surveys built to help achieve quick team consensus and drive collaborative conversation. Native*: directly in the chat interface with the slash command • Anonymous*: option to hide who voted • Surveys: create multi-question surveys • Recurring polls: option to set up polls daily, weekly, monthly, etc. Free Plan: limited to 100 responses, 30 polls, and 10 surveys per month. (*) Features available on the free plan. • Paid Plans: Premium plan starting at $49 per month for unlimited usage and annual billing and $59 per month for unlimited usage and monthly billing. Plan pricing varies based on number of team members. Enterprise plan available at custom pricing.

Emojis

Add Custom Emojis

Custom emojis within your company’s workspace can enable everyone to contribute to company culture in a personalized, fun way. Once added, these emojis can be used by any team member in the chat interface or as reactions. To add custom emojis, following these instructions:

  1. Download all the emojis you want to add. Slackmojis has a comprehensive collection of options.
  2. Click on the smiley face icon in the message field to open the emoji menu
  3. Click Add Emoji
  4. Click Upload Image and select your file. Square images under 128KB and with transparent backgrounds work best. Images can be in JPG, PNG, or GIF format.
  5. Name your emoji and click Save.

To download custom emojis in bulk:

  1. Get the Neutral Face Emoji Tools chrome extension
  2. In Slack, click the name of your server in the top left corner > Administration > Customize. You will see the new Bulk Emoji Uploader at the top of the screen.
  3. Drag your emoji collection and let the chrome extension handle the rest.

Tips!

  • Create custom emojis for each of your company’s values; encourage team members to react with value-based emojis when team member’s showcase values in their work
  • Use your company’s logo or fun photos of team members as custom emojis
  • Set custom emojis as your status to help introduce them to the team

Add Emoji Packs

An emoji pack is a collection of custom emoji made for Slack. Owners, admins, and members with permission can add emoji packs as a simple way to kickstart adding custom emojis. To add emoji packs, following these instructions:

  1. Download all the emoji packs you want to add. Emoji.gg has a comprehensive collection of options.
  2. Click on the smiley face icon in the message field to open the emoji menu.
  3. Click Add Emoji
  4. Click the Emoji Packs tab at the top.
  5. Select an emoji pack you like.
  6. Click Add Pack.

That’s a Wrap

Slack channels, apps, and emojis play pivotal roles in shaping a company's culture. These tools not only facilitate seamless communication but also contribute to a sense of camaraderie among team members. Investing in setting up and enabling team members to contribute to setting up the right channels, apps, and emojis will pay dividends for strengthening team culture in a fun and organic way.