Virtual Team-Building Activities for Work

virtual team-building activities for work

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With many people facing the challenges of working from home in these recent times, it’s essential to boost morale when working remotely. Moreover, to maintain productivity and efficiency from your team, implementing virtual team-building activities for work is ideal to avoid miscommunication and lack of team interaction. 

Virtual team building is the process of connecting remote teams through activities that nurture a more collaborative environment. With companies developing more established work from home policies, remote teams can develop better working relationships to become more productive. 

Virtual team-building activities for work allow remote teams to feel as tight-knit as teams working on-site. Progressive companies know how to maximize this ultra-flexible work practice to achieve better long-standing results. 

Why is Virtual Team-Building Activities for Work important?

virtual team-building activities for work

It’s estimated that the number of employees in the US will rise to 40.7 million people working remotely by 2025. This figure shows an eighty-seven percent increase from pre-pandemic levels. While remote work arrangements may vary, this modified setup can present new challenges for employees that need to be addressed. 

One of which is the lack of physical interaction in a work environment that can quickly turn into isolation. Isolation is a setback for employees and can derail cooperation among fellow team members away from doing their jobs more effectively. This is why it’s essential to create a comfortable and suitable team environment despite the physical distance so your team members can rely on each other. Virtual team-building activities for work are ideal in scenarios such as these:

  • When your remote teams face challenges of loneliness, isolation, and feel a lack of support. Implementing virtual team-building activities for work can remind individual members how incredible each one is and provide the support they need. Overall, it leads to happier employees.
  • When remote workers are losing enthusiasm. Working alone from home often takes away the excitement of actually being part of a working environment. Activities such as virtual team-building games are necessary to relieve employees from feeling burnt out and keep them engaged. 
  • When remote teams need more independence. Virtual team-building activities for work allow teams a chance to earn more trust to gain more independence from their managers. 

By utilizing strategically designed online activities and virtual team-building games, remote workers can face engagement-draining challenges and better build each other up as a team.

Virtual Team-Building Activities You Can Use

virtual team-building activities for work

Virtual team-building activities for work can be in the form of virtual team-building games, challenges, and exercises done through online digital platforms. These can be categorized according to the manner and preparation these activities are executed. Here are some virtual activities you can implement to build relationships, improve communication, and further employee morale and engagement:

Icebreakers

virtual team-building activities for work

Icebreakers are activities for remote teams that can be done at the start of a virtual meeting. This activity can ease the stiffness or awkwardness and instead create opportunities to build quick and personal connections among co-workers.

1. Classic Icebreaker Questions

  • Type: Casual, For Fun, Real-Time
  • Time: Five Minutes
  • Tools needed: Video Conferencing app

Icebreaker questions may be common, but they’re great opportunities to learn even more about your team members. There’s always something new to find out about each other, and every meeting is a chance to further these connections. Random questions provide a peek at each individual’s personality to gain more insight into each other. Some questions to break the ice can include:

  • What was the last movie that you watched?
  • Where was your last vacation?
  • How do you start your day?
  • What superpower would you want to have?

2. Online Lunch Dates

  • Type: Casual, For Fun, Real-Time
  • Time: Sixty Minutes
  • Tools needed: Video Conferencing app

While not able to do the real thing, teams can still spend time together over lunch breaks, albeit virtually. This activity can be done regularly, with teams linking up over lunch through video conferencing. Team members can set a budget, order from a chosen cafe or restaurant, have the food delivered promptly, so they can all enjoy lunch together. 

They can even choose to cook at home, providing an activity that simulates getting together. If time is limited, these virtual hangouts can be switched to online coffee chats or virtual happy hours instead.

3. Rose/Thorn Virtual Icebreaker

  • Type: Insightful, Group Sharing
  • Time: One Minute per Person
  • Tools needed: Video Conferencing app

This activity focuses on how each individual is feeling as a thoughtful way to start a meeting. Start the virtual huddle by having each person share their rose or the positive thing in their day that makes them happy or feel grateful. They then share their thorn or the challenge and obstacles they could be experiencing within the day. 

The things people share can be work or non-work-related. It’s a great way to get things off people’s chests and be reminded of the more positive things we can focus on. Teams who practice this routine to start virtual meetings find it’s a great way to align with each other and get everyone on the same wavelength.

4. Messy Desk Challenge

  • Type: Casual, For Fun, Real-Time
  • Time: Five Minutes
  • Tools needed: Group Chat app

Most office workers tend to keep their desks clean and tidy, devoid of trash or unkempt documents. The scenario is quite different, however, when you’re working from home. There’s no social contract to maintain, no judging eyes to elicit opinions from. A fun way of interaction among teams is challenging everyone to share a glimpse of their home-based workstations. 

This manner of communication among team members can be done through group chats away from management and other peers from work, providing a more personal means of nurturing relationships.

Virtual Team-Building Games

virtual team-building activities for work

Virtual team-building games can be played online by team members to help foster collaboration and enhance team spirit. These may include prepared props or utilizing gaming platforms that can be found online.

1. Virtual Scavenger Hunts

  • Type: Fun Game, Real-Time
  • Time: Five to Fifteen Minutes
  • Tools needed: Item List, Video Conferencing app

A virtual scavenger hunt is a fun way to get employees thinking sharply and reacting quickly. Players scramble to find items or fulfill tasks from a pre-set list before time runs out. Points can be gained by being the first to accomplish the task or show the thing on camera. This game encourages engagement among participants and is a great way to liven up a meeting.

2. Virtual Clue Murder Mystery

  • Type: Online Game
  • Time: One to Two Hours
  • Tools needed: Online Activity Program, Video Conferencing app

Virtual Clue Murder Mystery is an online team-building activity designed for remote teams. Using video conferencing software and an online gaming platform, teams will examine clues, review case files, and become virtual detectives as they solve the mystery of a murder. The game is customizable and assures a fun time for members. They tap into problem-solving skills to think analytically, communicate and collaborate to solve the mystery before time runs out.

3. Online Team Building Bingo

  • Type: Online Game, For Fun
  • Time: Fifteen to Thirty Minutes
  • Tools needed: Prepared Bingo Board, Video Conferencing app

Virtual team-building activities for work can also be familiar and fun, with the added convenience of technology. Online Team Building Bingo is a virtual team-building game that allows people to engage with team members by finding out more about each other. To play the game, bingo boards with pre-set identifiers are distributed to team members. These identifiers may include descriptions that refer to people, such as “prefers tea over coffee.” Prizes are awarded to whoever finishes a row or creates an “X” first. 

Competitive Challenges

virtual team-building activities for work

These virtual team-building activities for work can liven up your teams’ competitive spirit and develop teamwork to achieve success. 

1. Online Quiz

  • Type: Online Game, For Fun
  • Time: Five Minutes 
  • Tools needed: Curated questions, Video Conferencing app

Using an online gaming platform, such as QuizBreaker, team members can answer up to 100 customized questions that reveal insights about each other to build trust within the team. A quiz is then generated, which you can use for a fun virtual team-building experience later on. Every quiz round tightens your team together and can entice friendly competition by enacting a leaderboard feature. 

2. Team Trivia Night

  • Type: Online Game, For Fun
  • Time: One Hour
  • Tools needed: Prepared questions, Video Conferencing app

Slightly chaotic pub trivia nights are huge team game favorites that can be recreated as one of the virtual team-building activities for work. Using smart random trivia content and unique game mechanics, team members can enjoy trivia night from home without loud music and expensive drinks. In addition, you can customize questions to include facts about the company, the industry, and team members to add a more personal touch.

Purely Fun Activities

virtual team-building activities for work

These activities break from the usual practice and add some pure fun to your regular virtual meets. This is a great way to develop team relationships that allow your members to unwind and avoid feeling burnt out. 

1. Virtual Dance Party

  • Type: For Fun
  • Time: Five to Ten Minutes
  • Tools needed: Dance Music, Video Conferencing app

A quick and great way to build team morale is by having unexpected dance parties, even during video calls. You can either start your meeting with music to dance to so people can join or use dance breaks in the middle of meetings to boost energy.

2. Costume/Dress-Up contest

  • Type: For Fun
  • Time: For the duration of the meeting
  • Tools needed: Costumes, Video Conferencing app

One thing employees no longer experience while working from home is dressing up every day to go to work. So setting dates that allow them to dress up or wear a costume during virtual meetings are welcome challenges that break the norm. It’s a fun and enjoyable way that gives people a chance to showcase their style and creativity.

Conclusion

Despite the difference in the working environment, team members don’t need to feel isolated when teams show support for each other apart from doing the actual work. Virtual team-building activities for work provide a means to develop relationships and a meaningful way to establish a happy and well-balanced workplace.

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