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How to create a Microsoft Teams group chat

Microsoft Teams supports meetings with a large number of participants. These meetings are held in channels and everyone who is part of a channel can join the meeting. Microsoft Teams can support large group conversations whether they’re video calls or text-based chats.

Microsoft Teams group chat

Microsoft Teams group chat

You can create a group within Microsoft Teams to chat with multiple people at once. It seems obvious that the feature would be present in the app, and it is. The only shortcoming is that there is no specific button that you can click to create a group chat. 

Create Microsoft Teams group chat

To create a Microsoft Teams group chat thread, you must;

  • Be able to chat with other team members i.e., you must not be an external user.
  • Everyone you want to chat with must be part of the same team as you in order for them to be included in the group chat.

To start a group chat in Microsoft Teams, follow these steps;

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. Go to Chats from the column on the left.
  3. Click the new chat button.
  4. Enter the name of a user/team member, and continue adding names until you’ve added everyone you want to include in the group.
  5. Send a message.
  6. The group chat will be created.

Change group chat name

The group chat is named after the people included in it. This name will eventually become useless if you have multiple groups with the same people or there are too many people in a group. You can create a custom name for the group.

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. Go to the Chats tab from the column on the left.
  3. Select the group chat you want to rename.
  4. Click the edit button next to the group chat’s current name.
  5. Enter a new name for the group chat.
  6. Click Save.
  7. The name of the group will be updated for everyone.

Add more members

You can always add more team members to a group chat.

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. Go to the Chats tab from the column on the left.
  3. Select the group chat.
  4. Click the add members button at the top right.
  5. Click Add people.
  6. Choose if you want to allow them to see chat history from before they joined, or if you want to hide it.
  7. Enter the name (or email) of the members you want to add.

Leave a group chat

You can leave a group chat, even if you were the one who created it. 

  1. Open Microsoft Teams.
  2. Go to the Chats tab from the column on the left.
  3. Select the group chat.
  4. Click the add people button.
  5. Select the Leave option.
  6. Confirm you want to leave the group.

Note: the group chat will still be listed in Chats. This is because while you may have left the chat, you still have access to the conversation history. The chat will no longer update to reflect new conversations.

Conclusion

Microsoft Teams doesn’t force users to create channels for group chats. The group chats that you create can be used for text-based conversations and for audio and video calls. Each group chat has its own Files tab and you can share files over it. It is a watered-down version of Channels but channels are controlled and created by team owners whereas groups are for individual team members.

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