Use Microsoft Forms and Flow to create Mad Libs

Have a holiday party coming up? Staff meeting you want to spice up? Send a form out to attendees in advance to collect adjectives, nouns and verbs and showcase your favorite completed libs at your meeting. Or just do it for fun – because work should be fun. Go ahead and try my test version to see for yourself!

Make your own (short version)

  1. Create a form at forms.office.com with questions for adjectives, nouns, etc. Be sure to collect email addresses as well so you can send participants the completed mad lib. You can use my template
  2. Create a flow at flow.microsoft.com that pulls responses into an email template. You can import the flow I built

Detailed steps

Create the form to collect words

Go to http://forms.office.com

Create an account if you don’t already have one (it’s free!)

Note: It must be an organizational account – Flow cannot currently connect to “personal” Forms accounts.

Create a new form or use my template (open link and click “Duplicate it” at the top)

Add a title, subtitle/instructions and then any questions/word parts you want. You must include email address as a required field if you intend to email the results to someone.

If you’re giving people multiple mad libs to choose from, you must also require a choice field like in my example.

Create the flow to send completed mad libs

This is the part that takes form submissions and turns them into the actual mad libs. It’s easiest to import the flow I built.

  1. Log into your account at https://flow.microsoft.com
  2. Go to your flows, click Import and upload the zip file you downloaded

Now select your existing connections for Forms and Outlook.

If you don’t already have an Outlook and/or Forms connection, you’ll need to click “Create new” and add them, then come back to connect them in the previous step. You can also modify the Flow to use Gmail or HTML emails instead. If you use HTML emails, however, they’re more likely to go to spam or be blocked since they come from a well-known “marketing” address rather than an individual (yourself).

Once you’ve set your connections, click “Import” (you should no longer see red x’s next to the connections under “Related resources”)

Once imported, click “Open flow”

Check every step, especially the “Forms” step to set the correct Form connection, and correct other fields like “email body” variables as needed.

Note: My Flow template has multiple mad lib options. If you just have one, you don’t need the “switch” at all (which is really just a conditional statement).

When finished, click “Save” in the upper right, go to your flows and make sure it’s “On”.

Finally, copy the “Share” URL from your form and send it to people to complete! Have fun!

If “The Good Place” had Office 365

If you’ve watched NBC’s “The Good Place,” you’ll enjoy this post that much more. My CIO loves the show and recommended it so I started watching it. And then I couldn’t stop. I just couldn’t forking stop.

Seeing the hub site mega menu feature for the first time

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When a Flow works on the first test

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Trying to get AI bots to work in Teams

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When someone added the entire department to the “Owners” group

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When someone says all their forms are built in InfoPath

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Looking at the shared network drives after implementing OneDrive for Business and SharePoint

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When someone says they prefer Google Drive

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But then someone on my governance committee suggests we crack down on shadow IT things like DropBox and Google Drive being used outside the organization for work

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The secret to high governance committee and user group attendance

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When someone visits me after an update to SharePoint breaks all the workflows that have to be rebuilt asap

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When a new app is rolled out without administrative or governance controls

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When someone has ten levels of folders in a document library

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When someone sends a link to file on SharePoint or OneDrive instead of attaching it

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When someone suggests we utilize Power BI for data visualization instead of Excel

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When an email subject line reads, “Woops”

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Trying to explain a mandatory migration to Office 365

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When someone says “search sucks” and I give up and hire Bad Janet to take its place

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National Cookie Day: Microsoft’s new icons are tastier than ever

This National Cookie Day, I took Microsoft’s new icon set and gave them a festive frosting. If you have an awesome bakery nearby like KC’s Cakery in Tampa (thanks, Jon Levesque for the recommendation) maybe you could have these made up for your next governance committee meeting or a “launch party” announcing this change to the user experience.

P.S. If you do, be sure to share photos!

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