While you may not occupy the same physical space, having a handful of virtual team activities can foster team alignment and improve teamwork.
With so many people working from home these days, companies may find it hard to bring team members together in a productive way. One of the ways to foster a better sense of togetherness among team members is to carry out virtual team activities. There are several ideas for virtual team activities that all business leaders should keep in mind.
Virtual Team Icebreakers
One of the first types of virtual team activities involves virtual team icebreakers. These can include many different activities that team leaders might find helpful.
First, think about virtual team building questions like “Would you rather” questions. These might include,
- “Would you rather own a dragon or be a dragon?”
- “Would you rather have a personal chef or a personal pilot?”
There are other online team-building games that team leaders might want to try. One easy way to get started is with the game:
- Two Truths and a Lie
This is a relatively straightforward game where the various team members write down or present three statements about themselves. Two of them are correct, and one of them is false. Lies tend to be harder to spot if the team members add a lot of detail to their statements. The best games are when players give personal stories behind them. (Ask me about the time I was pulled over for traveling faster than 25 miles an hour without a car!) This is an excellent way for team members to learn more about each other.
If these team alignment activities for conference calls need more substance, there are other questions that people can ask as well! For example, go around the team and have each team member:
- Say your favorite M&M color
- Describe a memorable childhood destination
- What is your favorite sport?
This is an excellent way for teammates to learn more about each other through virtual activities.
Finally, it could also be fun to ask team members to choose one of the following to have:
- Choose only one: Money, power, or fame?
Then, ask the team members to explain their choice! For example, one person might choose power because they can use that authority to get more money and become famous! See? This is a fun game to play as well!
Virtual Team Building Questions
In addition to the other fun games above, it can be helpful to ask specific questions that are related to work as the atmosphere starts to become more comfortable. Try to make these questions open-ended to give team members more freedom to talk about their work experiences. Often, this leads to more thoughtful responses that make this activity a bit more enjoyable for everyone in the room.
For example, ask the various team members:
- “What did you think about the last marketing campaign?”
Ensure everyone has the freedom to speak without worrying about how it will impact their work relationships. The idea is to promote open, thoughtful communication that everyone can get behind. There could be some great ideas tossed out there that the team leaders might not have thought of.
It can also be helpful to ask people:
- “What is the first thing you would change if you were CEO?”
Remember that not all of the great ideas have to come from the top. Often, those who are on the front lines have a different perspective on how the company operates and where the company is headed. They could throw out some great ideas for how the company can improve as a whole.
If the team members feel like they are being heard, they are more likely to be open and honest about how they think about their work environments. This can make a big difference in how the company functions as a team. Be sure to encourage people to share whatever is on their mind without fear of being called out or attacked.
Online Team Building Games
Finally, it is also important to think about some other online team building games that can foster a sense of closeness and cohesion. There are a few examples of digital team building activities that teams should consider.
First, think about holding:
- A mini-project competition
In this competition, the team is divided into small groups that compete to accomplish something small over the course of 45 minutes or an hour. This competition could involve coming up with a great commercial or a new idea for a customer appreciation campaign. Think about asking the team members to put together a PowerPoint show or take advantage of a collaborative document. Then, the best submission might get a gift card or a donation to a local charity of their choosing.
Another excellent example of a virtual team-building activity is:
- A lip-sync competition
Think is similar to karaoke; however, everyone sounds amazing because it is just a lip sync battle! This can be done using a video conferencing call or recording and can put a smile on everyone’s faces! Think about trying these team building activities to bring teams closer together.
Virtual Games for Culture Building
Sometimes you need to split from the normal and introduce something entirely new to the mix. There are several online resources that can help to build culture for a remote team. Try these sites at your next weekly team meeting.
Icebreaker.video – Guided conversation games built for simple set up.
Donut – This Slack app automatically pairs employees up for a virtual meeting. Use it to meet someone new in your team or organization you don’t work with regularly.
Fishbowl – It’s the classic three-round guessing game made for your virtual team. Set up a quick remote meeting, and play through rounds of Taboo, Charades, and Password.