Teams chat with yourself is a feature that was announced by Microsoft in MC390416. In this article, I show you all aspects, functionalities and use cases of that feature.
To be honest, my first opinion when I heard about that feature was this: South Park – Season 14, Ep. 4 – You Have 0 Friends – Full Episode | South Park Studios Deutsch. If you are not a SouthPark Fan, I give you a brief summary: A small boy is very sad because of having 0 friends on Facebook. One day he finds one (virtually). That’s enough information to avoid spoilers.
In General, that is what I thought about: A feature for people, nobody wants to talk to? But no, that is of course not the use case! In times, where we live mostly online and digital, it is important to have a space to organize yourself. As always, there are multiple options in Microsoft 365 to address that problem, so if you do not like Outlook, To-Do and other tools, Teams may now have an appropriate solution approach.
Start a chat with yourself
To start a chat with yourself, all you have to do is putting your name (or email address) into the address bar of Teams. So basically it is exactly the same like starting a chat with anybody else. Then your chat appears on top of the chat list. Now, once the chat is opened, you see some kind of welcome screen:
The ongoing chat with yourself
You can easily see that the chat is waiting for you to type something. You can use that chat as a kind of notes to yourself by adding some information here:
The chat has all known functionality as it can easily be seen in the context menu. Once a task is finished, you can delete a message and it is gone.
Track yourself and your work
Much more interesting than chatting with yourself seems the “collaboration” aspect. The title bar offers all functionality like in a normal chat:
You can upload files, see the company organigram and track activity. The activity tracker is quite interesting and shows you, where you were active in conversations. That may sound completely senseless on first sight, but ask yourself the question:
Ask yourselfHow often do / did I have to remember people (or myself) where my chat hint or my Teams post is?
Exactly for that use case, this feature is extremely useful.
If you have LinkedIn Integration enabled, you will see your own LinkedIn profile, that maybe quite useful to doublecheck, to make sure your profile there looks as professional as you want it to be.
Overall these features are really useful if you do not have Viva Insights in your company because the chat with yourself covers some good basic functionality, you would otherwise need Viva Insights for.
Collaborate with yourself (and get help from others when you need it)
You may have noticed 2 really interesting aspects in the above screenshots:
- The Files tab
- The Loop button in the chat bar
That is really interesting, because that offers the combination of notes to yourself and getting the help of others without the need of adding them to your notes ( = chat with yourself). Just add a document to the chat and it will be available under files (same experience like you know it from 1:n chats). Now you are free to share this file – having a look at the sharing link, you see that is stored on your OneDrive for Business:
The path is the folder Microsoft Teams Chat Files. Nothing new, nothing special. As I already said, just functionality that was already there, before. So you can easily share documents internally and keep your (chat-based) to-do list private.
Using the Loop components is quite similar. You can add any Loop component in your chat, start doing cool things with Loop and later add more people to your loop component by using standard functionalities. Again, this is very useful when you need the help of others but want (or need) to be sticked closely to your personal todo list (that needs to remain private).
In my tests I was not able to add new participants out of Teams, I had to use the OneDrive view for that, by opening the Loop component there. Maybe that possibility will be added in future.
Yes, I was really sceptical if that feature has any sense, but now after having a close look at it, there are really some cool aspects inside. If you are a Teams-a-holic, you may really love that feature, because now, one big necessity to open Outlook may be obsolete. Just transfer all your open tasks to chats or loop tasks list(s). Then you can spend more time on your most loved tool: Microsoft Teams.