Chat at work is killing my productivity.
Owen Williams

Between the forever non-reponsive Email and the instantaneous attention-grabbing phone calls (or step into the colleague’s office), the chat tools are the best tradeoff in between for office communication. Modern day work requires significant level of team productivity and collaboration, so each team member needs to seek help from and provide help to others all the time. I personally feel the problem is not much about if chat tools should be used in work environment, but how they should be redesigned to provide more efficient information exchange capability. The linear aggregation of all chat messages (presentation problem) and the nondiscriminatory message notifications (interruption problem) are the culprits for the frustration as mentioned by the author and the commentors. The possible solutions include organizing chat messages in a threaded mode to keep content relevancy and rule out noise, and providing the @<user> based selective push notifications only to the target user. Much more can be done to make chat the truely powerful tools for office collaborations, if Slack is not doing it, someone else will.

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