Team building games for remote workers
Why are team building games for remote workers so important?
Meaningful interaction is one thing every team relies on– it not only helps strengthen relationships and builds trust but also supports personal wellbeing. The aim is to be more than just coworkers, you want everyone to be supportive of one another in a positive manner.
But, creating such a bond can be especially tricky when you haven’t actually interacted with some of your employees in person. That’s where connecting with the team over games can help.
Why is it important to socialise remotely?
There is a huge challenge remote employees are facing right now as they aren't part of any direct in-person communication like a typical office work environment. Research has proven that remote employees have weaker relationships with fellow colleagues than those who work in-house and that is of no surprise when almost 65% of remote employees haven't even had a group bonding session.
As a leader, it is important that you prioritise engaging your remote teams in regular team socializing. This will help to build a genuine human connection with remote workers, that will build trust and inclusion. Plus, it will allow remote employees to have an impact on company culture. Remote workers will feel valued and important in the company by simply being involved. Therefore, it is vital that you create time to socialize with all of your employees.
Communication, a must during crisis management
At any given time if your company is facing a crisis, such as cyber-attack, man-made disasters, workplace violence, or a global pandemic like COVID-19, it is extremely important that you get ahead to manage the situation. With the help of a communication app your business can be prepared, proactive and communicate effectively.
A communication app allows you to control events in real-time. It keeps the employees informed with updates and announcements, gets reports right from the field, shares key information and protocols, enforce compliance and so much more. In order for you to maintain trust in leadership with your employees, you need to keep communication lines open, honest and broad. Send an update about what’s going on, what are your expectations, and so on. Make it easy for employees to know your thoughts and to contribute their own.
To have effective communication, attempt to cater to each individual as the standard one-size-fits-all response doesn’t work for every individual. Make sure to ask every team member about any concerts they may have regarding their workflow, their emotional response to the disruption and to describe under what conditions they perform best.
It is important to set expectations and be crystal clear. Support your team from a practical and emotional angle.
When you create team building games for remote workers that are structured around an actual activity and not just “chit chat”, then you will discover that it focuses on everyone and makes everyone feel more involved.
Here are 10 great team building games for remote workers that you can implement easily and immediately.
1.Online Team Building Bingo
Time: 15-30 minutes
Rules: You start with a virtual bingo board that has a number of action items or accomplishments on it. For example, when you hear someone say ‘sorry, I was on mute!’ you can mark that spot off on your board, and similar for ‘wearing pajama bottoms to a video meeting’.
Objective: Bingo is a classic game that most people are familiar with, and the version for remote teams is a quick, easy and free way to get started with virtual team building.
Here is a remote work bingo template you can use for your first game:
Time: usually an hour and a half
Rules: Have employees vote on what movie they want to watch and stream the movie through a video conference call. Be sure to keep the instant messaging open so that team members can make remarks while watching the movie.
Objective: Team members can share a joke and bond over the movie while also offering an opportunity to relax and unwind.
Time: 30-40 minutes
Rules: The experience includes haunted historic ghost stories, icebreakers, little competitions and even a real s’more making experience. It’s fun, wildly smart, and probably the best online camping experience in the world. No mosquito repellent needed.
Objective: This event creates unique shared memories, good vibes and engagement at your organization.
4. Photo of your life
Photo by Banter Snaps on Unsplash
Time: 15-30 minutes
Rules: Each group can share a picture of something of their life, anything that tells a story about the employee: their dog or cat, their favorite mug to drink coffee, their kids, a favorite TV show, or even the view from their apartment or house. Then ask the remote employee to share the story behind the picture they shared.
Objective: It is a fun, surprising way to get to know one another and creates a casual atmosphere.
5. Virtual Happy Hour
Time: 30-45 minutes.
Rules: Invite everyone to a call and let them know they can bring a pint of their favorite brew; whether that beverage is tea, beer or wine. Then, a host organizes everyone into smaller teams and reads out questions. Participants must answer as a team, and each correct answer wins points. You can do themed trivia like Netflix shows, musical clues and science facts.
Objective: Your team can’t go to the pub together, but they can still do pub trivia and similar virtual happy hour games. It will be a stress buster.
6. That’s Right Bob
Time: 30-45 minutes
Rules: The first person to go shares a simple news story with no more than a sentence or two, “there was a cat up in the tree.” The next person states, “that’s right Bob”, repeats the original line and then adds to it, “there was a cat up in the tree, and it was having a very bad day.” Each person continues to add to the story in this way, until the story becomes unbearably long or the organizer calls for a commercial break.
Objective: That’s Right Bob is a unique way to engage your team, and helps people speak and share in a creative way that has structure and predictability to it.
7. Virtual Dance Party
Time: 5-10 minutes
Rules: Have the music playing when your team members login to a call. If you choose an upbeat song then you can start the meeting with high energy which will help with engagement throughout. You can also add a short dance break later in the call to bring the energy back up.
Important- You don’t need to bust fancy moves, just turn on a song and move to the beat!
Objective: Dancing can help cure awkward silences, keep energy high, and inject fun and team building into your team calls.
8. One Minute of Push-ups
Time: 60 seconds
Rules: Regardless of how your remote team members feel about push-ups, one thing remains true: it is an excellent full body exercise for getting a little stronger. Another advantage of push-ups is that you can do them nearly anywhere, including at home without any special equipment. Do as many push-ups as you can in one minute and post your score.
Objective: Encouraging fitness as there are two types of people in the world:
People who like doing push-ups.
9. Hydration Nation
Time: Throughout the duration of the call
Rule: Grab an accomplice or two before the video call, and have them watch a third party for each time that person takes a sip of a drink. When that person drinks, so does everyone on your crew in sync. The game is to see who notices what you are doing and when.
Objective: The idea is to play games that encourage healthy habits.
10. Remote Team Dinner
Time: 25-30 minutes
Rules: You may challenge everyone to prepare a variation of the same dish. For example: build your own sushi or pasta. Choosing dishes with flexible ingredients will make it easier for your people to source materials and also create dishes that match their unique dietary preferences.
Otherwise, just have your team members prepare any meal, and then connect for a virtual call while you eat and chat.
Objective: Having low-key connection time like this is a good way to relax and bond without focusing too much on work or team building.
In conclusion Use any one of the team building games for remote workers on the list to create a stronger team, it doesn't matter that they aren’t in the same office building. You don’t need to have everything mapped out to the last detail, just keep it simple. Chit-chat for a bit before or after meetings and keep the team building games for remote workers fun and focused. You will see a big change in your team that will help build open communication, friendships, and happiness in the workplace.