Employees, customers, and the company itself benefit from remote team activities. Virtual teamwork involves a variety of activities aimed at facilitating the fulfilment of company goals. Through them, it fosters communication, productivity, and the ability to solve problems as a team and encourages personal self-development.
Before working from home became popular, it was already customary to implement activities to improve teamwork. Now, more than ever, this method is necessary when it comes to virtual employees. Below, we have created a list of activities that are ideal for remote teams.
- There are many office-based activities that you can also do online with your virtual team. We will present you with options and simple instructions for you to carry them out.
- We recommend introducing new team members to teams with icebreaker activities. It helps to relax them and introduce them to others. Later, you can include them in another type of more dynamic activity.
- Team activities have been practised for several years and have benefitted both the company and the employees, which we will discuss later.
The best activities for remote teams: The definitive list
It can be very easy to feel the downsides of working remotely. You don’t feel that human connection like you once did in the office. That’s why we’ve researched and created a list of ideal activities for you to do with your online team. These are designed to work against those challenges and bring the human touch back to work.
1. Icebreaker activities
Remember the early days of college when you had to introduce yourself to the class? Many professors opt for icebreaker activities to relax and include students. These types of activities are also great for warming up new teams.
Here are three activities your team can do to break the ice and get to know each other better. We recommend not forcing everyone to participate, as this can be counterproductive (3).
Two truths and a lie
To begin with, we have two truths and a lie. It works simply and is easy to understand. Each team member tells two true personal facts and one lie. Then the rest of the members must guess which of the three facts is the lie.
Map of where they are in the world
For this activity, you will need to put a picture of the world on the screen. This way, each member can put a location pin on the city they are currently in. Once the entire team has pinned their location, they can see where their team members are located.
This will help the team realize the advantages of working virtually. They can connect with people from all over, with unique and special ideas, in a simple way.
Eight things in common
The next activity is simple, but might take more time than the others. The whole team participates and must find 8 things they have in common. None of the 8 events can have anything to do with work. This will help to create a bond between the members, as they will realize that they share more things than they thought.
Trivia nights create a fun but also the competitive atmosphere. This activity can help members bond, get to know each other better and surprise each other. For this activity, you can be the leader of the event. This means that you will be in charge of selecting the questions and moderating the event. Then, your team members can divide into small teams.
Once everything is set up, you ask the trivia questions to the groups so that they can decide their answers in a given time. The team with the most correct answers wins.
This traditional game can still be played with your virtual team. If you want to recreate it yourself, before the meeting, write different movies on pieces of paper. This way, you only have to choose one at random and send the name via internal chat to the member whose turn it is.
The person who has the name must draw the movie on a piece of paper that can be clearly seen in the video call. Meanwhile, the rest of the members try to guess the answer – don’t forget that you can choose a different movie theme for each session to keep the game interesting!
4. Online Escape Room
Escape rooms have become a new activity for groups of friends, both young and old. The objective of them is to solve puzzles in a given time, so that you leave the room unharmed. This same activity can be reproduced online to encourage team problem-solving.
There are different online escape rooms with different themes, designed to be solved in teams. You will also find some with different levels of difficulty. You have the option of creating subgroups, so you can work more closely in small teams. You can incentivize members by promising a reasonable prize to the winning group.
5. Birthday parties
We think this activity is a must. Celebrating the birthdays of your team’s employees has several benefits. It is as simple as organizing a virtual meeting throughout the day and singing happy birthday to the birthday boy or girl. This activity will make employees feel appreciated by the company. It also creates a break within the work shift for others.
6. Virtual clubs
Another possibility is to create groups of common interest. These can be virtual clubs for: books, movies, running, etc. Through them, employees can strengthen their relationships by sharing common interests outside of work.
Let’s take the book club as an example. In a literature club, they can have a vote among three books to choose the one they are going to read. Once they set a time to finish the book, they schedule a video call where they can discuss the book, and talk about what they liked and didn’t like. At the end of that meeting, they repeat the procedure.
An activity for virtual teams can be virtual Bingo. It is simple to organize and can be repeated several times. We will introduce you to a more active Bingo. First, you should make a list of basic challenges that team members should perform throughout the week. You turn this list into a Bingo card.
The challenges should be done in the presence of other members, preferably on video calls during working hours. For example, do not say words with the letter m during a team video call. Each time they do the challenges, they should let you know so you can check them. Once checked, they can cross the challenge of the card. The first one to get a line done or complete the card will get a reward.
8. Virtual coffee break
This activity is different from the previous ones. When we refer to the virtual coffee break, we are talking about recreating a common moment in offices that does not usually happen online. The idea is to encourage interrelation between employees. How to implement it? You form groups of two people to have a video call for coffee or tea during the day. As a result, you create an environment where they can talk comfortably about any topic.
Also, to avoid awkward moments, you can prepare conversation topics for them. In this way, they can get to know each other better and form a deeper relationship. As time goes by, it is expected that it will not be necessary for you to schedule this activity, but that they will want to chat while taking their coffee break.
9. Exclusive channel on Slack
Virtual workers need a communication channel beyond Zoom meetings. Therefore, we suggest using Slack, or a chat of your choice, to create a new exclusive space for doubts and groups within the company. You can create different chats for different needs. Some can have a more relaxed tone and others only for more important topics.
In this way, communication between teams is fostered and human connection is enhanced through a digital tool. It can also create a creative space where teams can share their ideas and receive feedback from others.
10. Weekly feedback sessions
Finally, we recommend an activity that you can do once a week. This activity is not about fun, but it is a feedback session. It serves to evaluate the team’s work and progress. This way, you can see what is working, what is not working and recommendations from the members about improvements. This type of activity helps the team to talk confidently with each other.
Hopefully, you have found the perfect activity to do with your virtual team. We hope that through our suggestions, you will be able to create a connection, personal development, improve teamwork and much more. Also, don’t forget that it’s all about having fun with co-workers and relaxing!
The team activities are endless if you use your creativity. You can transform traditional games into viral games. However, as virtual work increases across the world, more options are sure to emerge for you to make use of. We will try to keep up with the new developments and keep you updated.
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