Working from home may have its own share of perks but after a year of endless Zoom calls, nonstop chatting on messaging platforms, and doing almost everything online, companies and employees are already feeling the burnout. Many companies are looking for ways to reinvigorate the team spirit that was so prevalent in the office.
The good news is that it’s nothing to be worried about. Almost all companies have faced the challenge of keeping a healthy company culture despite the pandemic. While virtual work from home activities may be different from face-to-face interactions, there are still plenty of ways for teams to develop their team spirit and keep a tight-knit relationship.
We listed down virtual team-building ideas that can make remote teams feel as close as on-site teams. These activities are designed to reinforce a shared team spirit and company culture, and can also help in filling in the gaps of the minimal engagement in a work-from-home setup.
We’ve grouped different activities together depending on what your team needs–icebreakers, games, socials, and brainstorming tools.
Feel free to choose below the virtual team building that suits your team identity.
These are virtual activities that you can easily use when introducing new members to the team, to open a virtual event, and during orientations of new employees.
1. Social Shuffle
Many companies continued to hire new employees even during the pandemic which made easing into the new workspace more difficult since everyone is working from home.
The good news is that you can still get to know your new colleagues and build better rapport with your old ones with this activity.
In the Social Shuffle, your team will have to answer fun facts about each other as you tackle a series of themed challenges together. The activity lasts between 30 minutes to two hours and can be done with the help of Outback Team Building.
2. Online Bingo
Break the ice with a fun and interactive game of online Bingo. Aside from being familiar and easy to play, the game is also quick to set up and great for virtual team engagement.
You can download a free template for online bingo here.
3. Never Have I Ever
If you’ve ever played ‘Never Have I Ever,’ you’re probably familiar with all the interesting and juicy details that come out from the game. It’s a great icebreaker too to get to know colleagues better.
To play online, you and your team need a reliable video conferencing app. Everyone will be asked to hold out their hand so that everyone can see each other’s fingers. A moderator would read statements such as “Never have I ever kissed a stranger” and if it applies to you, put down a finger.
No time to come up with ‘Never Have I Ever’ statements? Check out some templated ones here.
Pretty much everyone misses office parties. To give employees a break from the usual work-related calls, tap into these virtual social activities that could foster a closer bond among team members,
1. Virtual Happy Hour
Who doesn’t miss grabbing a cold one (or two) with an officemate after work hours?
While social distancing is still a must, the good news is that you can still organize a happy hour virtually. Send out happy hour kits to employees and set up an online meeting after work hours.
In case things get awkward, make sure you have different icebreakers prepared.
2. Open Socials
While there is a lot of software, apps, and websites that offer virtual team-building activities, sometimes employees just need a fuss-free chat with colleagues. Try organizing a virtual “open socials” night with no agenda so that employees can just come and chat with each other.
There’s no specific software or program for this one. You can just use any reliable video conferencing app such as Microsoft Teams or Zoom.
3. Pet Showcase
Who doesn’t love pets? One good way of staying together while being apart is by holding a pet showcase night with your team. Aside from being a cute and fun activity, it’s also a good way to get to know your teammates better. How many are team cats and team dogs? Right?
Games are a great way to inject fun into long virtual workshops, meetings, and even parties. Check out these easy games that your team can do virtually.
1. Bring Me
Aside from being nostalgic, Bring Me is one of the easiest games to play even virtually. All your team needs is a good video conferencing app and a moderator, and you’re good to go.
To make Bring Me more interesting, try spicing it up by asking for items that could only be found in the home.
2. War of the Wizards
War of the Wizards is an interactive, fun, and interesting game that you can play with your teammates. The activity runs for 90 minutes and combines elements of popular role-playing games, world-building, storytelling, and more.
The gist is this: a group of wizards has been at war since ages past, and not one of them can quite remember why. You and your teammates become the wizards’ minions and work together toward a peaceful resolution of the conflict.
This means via breakout rooms, your colleagues will use communication, creative problem solving and teamwork to make important decisions. Check out more about the game here.
3. Online Trivia Night
Another interesting online activity to boost engagement is by holding a trivia night. It’s also a great way to quiz employees about company culture, and about each other.
To make it more engaging, you can send employees a trivia night kit beforehand with snacks and props. Plus points if you offer prizes to winners.
Used to gathering everyone up in the meeting room for a brainstorming session? Don’t worry, thriving in the work-from-home era is still possible with these tools that can help your team during your virtual brainstorming.
1. Virtual Whiteboard
Just like in the typical office setup, a virtual whiteboard allows you and your team to jot down ideas like you would in a physical brainstorming session.
Virtual whiteboards allow remote workers to collectively brainstorm, and gather inputs. It is especially useful for teams that are distributed geographically and can be used over a series of days.
If your team is not yet using Slack, you should probably give it a try. The app is a transformative way of communicating with your teammates from chats to different projects.
With Slack, you and your team can upload and share files as well as integrate other apps and services. The app also allows users to create channels for specific topics and you can even automate certain workflows in the app which are really useful for repetitive tasks so you can focus on the work that can only be done with human focus.
Bonus point: you can even create a custom emoji. Check out Slack here.
3. Word Association
Starting a meeting, especially on one that everyone feels awkward about, is already difficult in person–much more in the virtual setting. Thankfully, word association can help you and your team ease into that.
For easy (virtual) discussions, pick a prompt relevant to your agenda or meeting and ask your teammates to share one word that they immediately associate with that prompt.
This could be about a new project concept, company culture, or even a work problem. Doing this would help you and your team avoid wasting time on long virtual calls and make it easier to discuss the results since there are already available talking points.
Remote work has ushered in a lot of changes in companies but it doesn’t mean that employees need to suffer.
With a winning mindset, working from home offers a lot of flexibility and new opportunities for companies (and employees) to thrive. With the right tools and initiative, employees can easily adapt and flourish in the new normal for work culture.
A healthy workplace is a productive workplace
While these work-from-home team-building activities are important for improving morale, there is an even better way to keep up your employees’ spirits and enable them to strive to be more productive. This is by being genuinely concerned with their physical and mental wellbeing. When employees are healthy and focused, they become inspired to do more.
That’s why here at Well Health Works, we offer an extensive lineup of employee wellness packages aimed at ensuring the health and safety of your workforce. From scheduled flu shots and biometric screenings to COVID employee testing and more, we are your trusted partners in workplace wellbeing. Call us now at 833-935-9355 or fill out our contact form to get started today.