Praise Your Own Way
I’ve never been a huge fan of the Teams Praise app. As an acknowledged curmudgeon, lauding someone publicly with a decorative badge is not in my nature. But while not fully appreciating the usefulness of an app like Praise in the enterprise, I do see how it is useful in an education setting where goal achievement is often rewarded with public recognition.
All of which brings me to the topic of customizable praise for Teams, announced in Office 365 notification MC220516 on August 18 and due to roll out to tenants in December 2020 (it’s been delayed a little). According to Microsoft 365 roadmap item 64978, this is the “ability to create custom Praise badges (title, colors, images, language) that expresses company culture.” A tenant can create up to 25 custom praise badges for its own purposes.
A tenant can also create customized versions of the badges in the two sets (Default and Social and emotional learning badges for education) supplied by Microsoft. Each set has 12 badges, which are downloadable from the online documentation. The Praise app loads the default set unless you disable this in the app settings.
Building Custom Badges
The first thing to do is to figure out what purpose custom badges will serve. The reason why someone should use a badge to praise someone should be obvious. For instance, you might want to create a badge with your corporate logo, or one for top salespeople who overachieve their sales targets.
Once you’ve decided what custom badges to add, open Manage apps section in the Teams admin center, find the Praise app and access its settings (Figure 1).
Scroll down to the Custom badges section and select the Add option. You’ll need to know:
- Badge name: The name that appears in Teams and is visible to users. You can also enter localized badge names for the languages your tenant uses Teams in. If necessary, you can exclude locales where the badges are not to be used.
- Image file: This is a PNG image of 40 KB or less. An inconsistency exists between the pixel dimensions given in the Teams admin center (288 x 288) and those stated in the online documentation (216 x 216). I used the larger value. A basic picture editor like Paint (Figure 2) can generate the PNG files.
- Badge colors: You need to give hex values for two colors. One is used for the badge name (text color); the other is for the badge background. You can use sites like htmlcolorcodes.com to find the right color codes.
When all the custom badge settings are input (Figure 3), click Apply to add the data to the settings of the Praise app.
Finally, click Submit (Figure 4) to have Teams publish custom badges for use with the Praise app. Microsoft suggests that you publish all custom badges together as it takes a little while before the new badges are available to Teams desktop and browser clients.
Using Custom Badges
After publication, when users access the Praise app, custom badges are shown before the default set (Figure 5).
No difference exists in how custom badges are used. However, if you make poor color choices for the badge name and background, your custom badges might not look as good as the normal set. Take the example shown in Figure 6. The top version of the badge uses a hex color code of #242EF0 (a blue hue). The bottom version uses a white background (#FFFFFF) and looks much better.
Artistic Badges Wanted
I’m still not a huge fan of the Teams Praise app, but I do like it when an app is customizable to meet organization-specific needs. Microsoft has done a good job of supporting custom badges. It will be interesting to see what kind of badges are produced.
Praise is a standard Microsoft app for Teams, which you can use to send praise badges to your colleagues, either in a channel for public recognition or through chat for personal praise. This tutorial takes you through how to find and use the Praise app, how to add and use the social and emotional learning badges for education, and how to create your own custom badges.
00:00 – Introduction 00:31 – Finding and using the Praise app in Teams
01:04 – Send a Praise badge in a channel
02:02 – Send a Praise badge in a chat
02:41 – Switch on the Education badges
03:20 – Create a custom badge
05:42 – Notifications
06:21 – Subscribe for more tips and tutorials
Manage the Praise app in the Microsoft Teams Admin Center (includes all assets for default cards):
Manage the Praise app in the Microsoft Teams admin center
Admins must have a Teams license to access this feature. If you try to access this feature without a Teams license, you'll get an error message.
The Praise app in Microsoft Teams helps users show appreciation to members of their organization or classroom. With a selection of badge sets to choose from and the option to create your own badges, Praise is designed to help recognize the effort that goes into the wide range of work that Teams users do, from educators to Frontline Workers. To learn more, check out Send Praise to people.
Admins can control what badges are available to their organization from the Microsoft Teams admin center. In the left navigation, go to Teams apps > Manage apps. In the list of apps, click Praise, and then select Settings. From here, you can choose to enable default and built-in badge sets and create custom badges.
The Praise app feature isn't available for U.S. government clouds.
Use built-in badge sets
Built-in sets are collections of badges designed by Microsoft for the Praise app. These sets are not editable by admins. The default badge set is already enabled and available in the Praise app. To change the availability of the default set or of any badges sets, switch the corresponding toggle to On or Off.
The default badge set is designed to help Teams users recognize their peers for going above and beyond with their work.
Social and emotional learning badges for education
Educators can recognize individual students for social and emotional learning (SEL) achievements and behaviors with badges that illustrate these concepts.
Create your own badges
Select Create a custom badge. From here, you can design a custom badge in the side panel. You can create up to 25 custom badges.
Enter a badge name. This is the name that will appear on the badge when users send praise.
Set your badge colors. To set the text and background colors of your badge, you need to enter the colors as hexadecimal (hex) values.
If you’re new to hex values, this article includes a quick introduction to show you how to use them.
Upload a badge image. The accepted file type is .PNG. The image file must be less than 40 KB with maximum dimensions of 216 X 216 pixels.
Localize your badge name: Under Localized badge names, select Add. Select the desired locale from the drop-down list. Then enter the badge name in the designated language.
Exclude your badge from specific locales: Under Exclude badge from these locales, select Add. Select the locales you want to exclude from the drop-down list.
Select Apply. Your new badge will now appear in the custom badges table.
If steps 4 and 5 are skipped, the badge will be in the default language for all locales.
When you’re finished making changes to your badge selection, make sure to select Submit. It may take up to a few hours before these changes are available to your organization.
Specify colors with hex values
Hex color values are strings of six hexadecimal digits that represent the intensity of red (RR), green (GG), and blue (BB) in a specific color on a scale of 00 to FF. When you put the values of all three colors together, you get a hex value: #RRGGBB
For example, the hex value for the color red is #FF0000 because red is set at the highest possible value, FF, and green and blue are each set at the lowest possible value, 00.
To explore different colors and their hex values, check out Bing color picker.
Below is a list of example colors to get you started:
Best practices for creating custom badges
Submit all your badges at once. Because it takes a while for new badges to be processed, it’s best to add all your custom badges to the table before submitting them.
When choosing colors, keep accessibility in mind. Some colors go together better than others. Create contrast between your text and background colors to make the badge name easy to read. For example, if you chose a dark background color, choose a light text color.
When selecting an image, keep badge dimensions in mind. For the best quality, we recommend uploading an image file that is 216 x 216 pixels (which are the maximum dimensions). Avoid stretching or distorting the image to fit these dimensions.
If your badge image isn’t rectangular, make the image transparent. You’ll need to do this before uploading the image file to Praise.
Badge set assets
Built-in badge sets can't be modified, so when a built-in set is enabled, all badges in the set are added to the Praise app. If you want to add specific badges from a built-in set and leave out others, re-create the badges you want to use as custom badges. You can download the badge image and find the text and background colors of badges from built-in sets in the tables below.
Default badges assets
Social and emotional learning badges for education assets
Published by Vesa Nopanen
Principal Consultant and Microsoft MVP "They call me Mr. Teams." "Creating better worklife!" Virtual Events, Meetings and Collaboration are big letters in the word cloud of what I do and consult daily. My expertise area is Microsoft 365 / Microsoft Cloud , covering especially - Microsoft Teams and extending & integrating Microsoft Teams between systems in and out of Microsoft 365 - Power Platform: (Power Automate, Power Virtual Agents, Power Apps & Dataverse for Teams - SharePoint - and tools that create a modern workplace solution and practices. In my work I am also an adviser for customers so they can discover best benefits, gain best value & ROI out of chosen tools. I have 25+ years of experience in IT and worked with Office 365 since 2012. I am a speaker in various community events like Microsoft Ignite (2019, 2020, 2021), Teams Nation (known before as TeamsFest), Microsoft 365 Virtual Marathon, Commsverse, CollabDays, SharePoint Saturdays, Power Platform community,... and the list goes on. Community Events & User Groups I co-organize: - Teams Nation Community Conference & Monthly Meetups - Teams Community Finland (founder) #TeamsFi Let's connect! View all posts by Vesa Nopanen
Teams praise microsoft
Science agrees: People are happier and more productive when they get recognition for their efforts. Send acclaim to your employees and coworkers with Praise. Deliver in a chat, or for wider recognition, send it in a channel conversation. Revel in the good vibes.
Below the space where you write a new message or reply, select Praise or choose Messaging extensions to find it.
Choose a badge.
Add the name of the people that you want to praise and an optional description.
Once it's ready to go, select Send.
Choose your brand of Praise.
Below the compose box for a new message or reply, tap More options> Praise.
Choose a badge.
Add recipient(s), and then tap the note area to add a note.
Once it's ready to go, select Send.
Graphical Acknowledgements From Teams
Office 365 message center notification MC176548 tells us that Microsoft began rolling out the “Praise” feature for Teams on March 27. According to the update, Praise gives users the opportunity “to recognize their colleague’s contributions by sending various badges.” Microsoft’s support article for the feature goes even further and encourages us to “Revel in the good vibes,” which sounds awfully like a line from a song by the Beach Boys.
You’ll know when Praise has reached your tenant when Praise icon turns up under the message compose box. In the mobile clients, Praise is in the […] menu, although this might change in the future. Badges can be sent in personal chat and channel conversations by tenant and guest users.
To praise someone, select the app, select the badge you want to use. There’s only the set provided by Teams to choose from – you can’t add new badges. (It’s already been suggested that a Nerd or Geek badge would be appropriate). In September 2020, Microsoft delivered the ability to create custom badges to allow organizations to create their own accolades.
Next, select the user (or users) you want to send praise to and enter the custom message to go along with the badge. If you send praise in a channel, you can only select recipients from the members of the team (including guests). If you send praise in a personal chat, the recipients must participate in the chat. When finished, click Preview to see the complete message and then Send to dispatch it to the recipients.
Because praise messages are like @mentions, recipients get a notification in their activity feed. And then they notice that they’ve been praised and get a nice warm glow all the way down to their toes.
In some respects, a praise message looks like one that you could compose with a sticker or GIF plus an @mention to the folks being praised. That’s true, but the praise message looks neater and its purpose is clear: you want to appreciate something someone has done.
Guest members of a team see the praise app but they cannot use it to praise other team members as the app fails to fetch the set of team members to allow the praise to be sent. Guest users can send praise in a personal chat, but the other person’s name doesn’t appear in the message. On the upside, tenant users can praise guests in both chat or channel conversations.
Partial Compliance Record
One thing I noticed is that the compliance record captured in Exchange Online for a Teams praise message doesn’t include any graphic content. Below you can see what Outlook displays after finding and exporting a praise message with an Office 365 content search. The text is similar to what’s displayed in Teams, but it’s not the same. Compliance officers don’t like when things are different, so it remains to be seen if Microsoft will update the capture of these messages so that the compliance records are a true copy.
Some Will Like Praise, Some Won’t
Not being one of the fabled millennial community, I don’t quite know if I like praise or not. I have never had a problem saying thank you or acknowledging people in other ways, so I guess this is just another way of getting the job done. Maybe it will grow on me, much like @mentions and reactions.
Praise is not available for tenants in the GCC sovereign cloud, probably because government employees are far too busy to engage in badge-driven tomfoolery.
Need more information about Teams? Read Chapter 13 of the Office 365 for IT Pros eBook. We don’t cover Praise today, but it will be in the April 2019 update, along with all the other stuff that’s changed inside Office 365.
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I'm in no hurry. You are tied and there is nowhere to go, after the blow I wait a second and give you time to enjoy the sensations of. The blow. I hit the buttocks sometimes on the shoulders.