5 Virtual Team Building Activities That Work
By: TeamBonding Team | March 8, 2020
How can you build and maintain a viable professional and personal relationship online?
It’s one thing to create an atmosphere of trust and a feeling of camaraderie between employees when they’re all in the same building 40 or so hours a week.
But, what about when some, or all of you, work remotely, and rarely (if ever!) see your coworkers?
Here are 5 virtual team building activities for bringing your remote team together. We make the seemingly impossible task of keeping remote employees cohesive.
1) Don’t cut the Chit-Chat
It’s personal chit-chat that helps employees relate to each other. When working remotely, team members don’t have a chance to make small talk with their neighbor in the next cubicle or discuss weekend plans by the coffeemaker.
Remote teams have to build time for small talk into group meetings. Try to spend a couple of minutes at the start of each meeting discussing personal, or department updates. Ask that team members send in recent photos of themselves or another quick challenge in a Slack channel, or another chat tool.
Use your resources your team has! A video conferencing system like Skype, or Zoom, can increase communication and being able to see each other makes it feel a little more personal and less distant.
2) Reply All
If you don’t have a chat tool like Slack, don’t let this stop your team. Make sure to utilize your email! Send out an email to the group with an icebreaker question. Ask everyone to respond to the question via email and “reply all” so that everyone gets to know each other a bit more.
The questions are up to you—they may be personal (“Where do you hope to be in ten years?”), just for fun (“If you could take a vacation anywhere in the world right now, where would it be?”), or related to the type of work the group is doing.
Also, be sure to reply all to messages sent to groups in general, unless there’s a need to take your virtual conversations “offline.”
Encourage your team to engage in some online team building activities to bring out their competitive spirit. Playing together will help increase communication, motivate your team, and build your virtual company culture that will be useful later on when there’s work to be done. 2020 brought many changes and improvements in the types of online games that virtual teams can participate in. In our recent program addition, we launched a well-known game, Jeopardy!® which offers a new type of training, while at the same time, having fun.
4) All for One, and (a cup of) Joe for All!
Don’t forget to thank your employees! Remote employees typically don’t have the same privileges as in-office employees, so basic coffee breaks, or team lunches don’t exist. However, with the wide availability of WiFi connection these days, it has become easier to get team members to connect online outside of their offices or homes. You can set up “Coffee Meetings”, where team members each go to a coffee shop near their location and connect online for team updates. Companies can send gift cards to each person, (via email, mail, or text) and the team is sure to feel appreciated as they brainstorm over their cup of Joe, outside the home office. This gives them a chance to experience a virtual company outing.
Another way to thank employees is through appreciation kits. Send them candy or a gift! Have everyone post in their communication channel what they received.
Employee appreciation stems from acts of gratitude and recognition, building your team and company culture. TeamBonding saw the necessity and demand for this, and that’s why we created a way to send your team, working in-office, or remotely an Employee Appreciation Kit. View them here.
5) Virtual Team Building
65% of remote employees report that they have never had a team building session. From conference call meetings to email agendas, virtual work teams must work together, though physically apart, to reach the goals.
Games such as our Picture this: Virtual program is targeted towards increasing virtual team collaboration and communication. The program also includes team building icebreakers that are designed to facilitate relationships and bonds within your virtual team.
All remote teams face the challenge of team engagement, and sustaining a positive company culture.
Especially if the team has never worked remotely before. We have come up with a few solutions to start and manage your remote team. Read next: The Steps To Starting Out Your Remote Team
We also offer an all-new program category, specially designed to keep your virtual team engaged.
View our Virtual & Remote Team Building Activities.
At TeamBonding, we are experts at mixing work & play to create team building events, both virtually and in-person globally, for businesses looking to positively impact their company culture, employee engagement and retention, on-the-job effectiveness and job satisfaction.
We’ve outlined five steps for starting and managing a remote team with a focus on building culture. No longer a special arrangement for a handful of team members, remote work has become more common than ever. Today, the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) has imposed work from home mandates, and many companies need to start and manage remote teams, fast.
In a world rife with distractions and a population more easily sidetracked than ever, it’s becoming more and more difficult for companies to keep their employee morale strong.
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It’s a new year, which means making personal new year’s resolutions and office resolutions. A great way to do this is to start a goal sheet. Write down everything you envision for the year. If you haven’t started on your 2020 Vision goal sheet, here are some tips to get a head start!
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