Private Microsoft Teams in Office 365 to become NOT so Private

So this showed up in my inbox today… News flash I am one of the organizers of SharePoint Saturday Chicago Suburbs, our next event is May 5th.  <— Shameless plug 🙂

We’re making it easier to share and join private teams in Microsoft Teams
Major update: General Availability rollout started
Applied to: All customers

Starting March 23, 2018, private teams will be searchable in Microsoft Teams. This feature update will make it easier for people to share and join Teams.[How does this affect me?]Until now, it was not possible for users to find and request access to a private team in the Teams app. Users had to either be invited to a team or search for the underlying group in Outlook in the Outlook app.Now, private teams will be discoverable via search and the Suggested teams gallery, making it easier to share and discover private teams across an organization. If a user requests to join a private team, the team owner will receive a notification and can approve or deny the request directly in Teams. [What do I need to do to prepare for this change?]We recommend that you inform team owners about this change. If team names or descriptions include sensitive information, team owners may want to update them before this change occurs on March 23, 2018.If you wish to hide a private team or group, Office 365 admins can use the Set-UnifiedGroup PowerShell cmdlet to hide specific groups or teams (in Outlook, Outlook Web App, and Microsoft Teams). Specifically, use the HiddenFromAddressListsEnabled parameter, which you can apply to individual groups. For further instructions, please click Additional Information below.

I get Microsoft wants to be more collaborative,  I think this is an interesting move.  People create private groups for a reason, they want them to be private.  While I think it is great that they recommend Team owners change the names of their Teams if they contain sensitive information, I think there will be more than one Team owner who doesn’t read the “memo” (ok I’m old) and not be happy about it.  At least they give PowerShell commands for hiding them, but that seems to put more work on the Administrators.

I would like to see this rolled out as an opt-in type of feature that organizations could decide to “turn on” or not, rather than be rolled out as “turned on” already.  I would recommend Admins start running reports and to see if they have any Teams names with sensitive information, or any questionable names for that matter.

A copy of this blog was posted on my podcast site that I do with Jay Leask:

Hope this helps!




SharePoint Saturday Chicago Suburbs

Almost four (4) years ago to the day, on May 20, 2013, me and a group of friend organized SharePoint Saturday Chicago Suburbs.


Last Saturday, May 19th, we held our 4th event.  We also coupled it with an event we had been doing separately called Cloud Saturday.


Cloud Saturday was born a spin-off of the original event because Microsoft pulled back on using the name SharePoint, was pushing hard for the Cloud, and Amazon Web Services, Saleforce, Google Cloud, and other technologies were on the rise.

This year, like years past, we had really Great Sponsors and really Great Speakers and feel fortunate to have so many people want to be apart of our event.  The attendees all seemed to have a good day.  This year we cut session times from 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 hour, so we were able to get out of the event a couple of hours early and many people remarked how they appreciated that.

Getting involved in user groups, speaking at, and hosting events is something that has really helped me with career satisfaction, establish a great network of friends, and made me really appreciate how great the SharePoint\Cloud community really is!

I can’t wait to start planning out the event next year.  We got some great feedback and look to implement a number of things to help make the event even more successful.