Teamwork is the secret that makes common people achieve uncommon results.
-Ifeanyi Enoch Onuoha
Rightly said, a team that works together, shares a common goal, does much more than individuals. It divides the tasks and multiplies the success.
A seamlessly coordinated team is one where the members of the team trust each other like End Game’s Captain America and Ironman – they know each other’s strengths and weaknesses too well. They blend in to work towards one goal and bolt through it.
It is an established fact that teamwork is dream work. However, Rome wasn’t built in one day. Neither is teamwork.
It requires strong efforts from the employer, and from each Donut bot channel team member to create that fully functional, unified dream team.
Team building, the art of unifying your team, is a skill that must be mastered by employers. You must create opportunities and provide a platform for your team members to connect. It all starts with you.
Such team-building activities and sessions must be inculcated in your operations, especially, during the pandemic, when all your teams are remote working.
Let me break it down.
Why Virtual Team Building Activities are Essential for Remote Team
Remote teams have their team members working from different locations. The entire team is scattered. Generally, there exists a sense of disengagement among remote workers. This gives all the more compelling reasons to practice virtual team building.
Here is a list of a few more strong reasons. Remote team building activities:
- Forms stronger connections and deeper bonds between team members
- Improves team engagement
- Builds trust
- Helps in de-stressing and reducing burnouts
- Increases productivity
- Fosters creativity and learning
- Helps in individual skill development
- Helps broaden individual minds and be more accepting
- Prevents hostility and internal conflicts
- Improves company culture
The list goes on highlighting the importance of virtual team-building activities for remote teams.
Top 30 Virtual Team Building Activities and Games
Here comes the fun part.
There are several online team-building games and activities that help break the ice and bring your teams together. Let us look at some of the wildly popular virtual games and activities in demand amongst remote teams.
Let’s Get. Set. Go.
Popular online team building games
This category includes virtual team building games that lets people connect over fun games.
1. The ever-familiar Bingo
Bingo, a game we’ve been enjoying since primary school. You can now play remote Bingo, with a twist.
This game includes all those tidbits we do during our “office hours”. Laundry during lunch, “Can you hear me”, work from bed, it can include anything.
The game is a fun ice breaker and engager. It can be played at the end of your stressful meetings or in the beginning to start the conversation flow.
2. Tiny campfire
Oh, how we miss traveling, wandering into the wilderness, camping amidst those tall trees with slow music in the background, chit-chatting with strangers!
This virtual team-building activity tries to relive those moments with a miniature kit. You can send a tiny campfire kit with tealights, and a s’mores kit of crackers, chocolate, marshmallows, and toothpicks. You can also throw in some twigs and pebbles to create a realistic one on your work desks.
You can mail the packages to your team members, and on a weekend eve, grab some snacks, some wine, share ghost stories (a requisite), get to know your mates, build trust, and have a blissful campfire in your room.
This was one of those mandatory games we played during camps and on darker nights with a big gang. The same game can be used to bring your teammates closer. The virtual alternative is very similar to the original.
There are werewolves, a medic, a seer, and villagers. One werewolf for six villagers is ideal.
When the game master announces the night has fallen, everyone closes their eyes. The werewolves wake up to choose a victim. Then the medic wakes up to cure a villager, and the seer points to a person to reveal his identity. It can be done by sending the chosen names on private chats.
Later, when morning arrives, everyone gets to know who is dead and argues over who the werewolves are. If found, the player gets out. The game ends when either only the werewolves remain or the villagers.
Again, this online team-building game brings team members together and helps form connections beyond work.
Creating remote teams should be fairly easy with our solutions
4. Truth or Dare
Truth or dare is a classic game. We are all (too) familiar with the rules, and the virtual version isn’t that different. However, it need not be as dangerous as when you tricked your high-school heartthrob into admitting their secret crush. Curate the e-version that focuses on having fun and avoid too personal and NSFW questions (Not Safe For Work).
Create a list of questions that reveals innocent truths and bold dares. The players get to choose whether to reveal a truth about themselves or perform a daring dare. The game is as fun as the questions asked.
Pro-tip: Include several performance questions in your dares. Seeing your teammates do the chicken dance or a frog jump for sure breaks some legs and ice.
5. Never Have I Ever
Yet another classic game with a twist. Similar to Truth or Dare, the e-version of Never Have I Ever should also be crafted to focus on fun and must be SFW (Safe For Work).
That said, who says the subtle e-version cannot be as much fun?
Grab a glass and a drink of your choice. Players take turns to list experiences they’ve never had. And if someone did have that experience, they drink to it. Obviously, revealing our work from home shenanigans got to be fun.
6. Can You Hear Me Now?
What more to engage your team than group activities?
“Can You Hear Me Now”, is one such online team-building group activity. People are divided into groups and one person from each is chosen as the speaker while the rest are artists.
The speaker uses a random image generator. They then describe it to their group members who draw to replicate the image based on descriptions. The team with the drawing closest to that of the original image wins.
The challenge here is that the speaker can only use definite geometric shapes. Describing fire with just triangles is harder than you think. Not only does it engage your team but also improves their communication skills.
7. Secret Santa
Secret Santa is a game that excites adults as much as it excites kids. Surprisingly, it can be added to your list of remote team-building games.
The online version involves a little technical spin. You can use tools such as drawnames, elfster, etc., to randomly choose a name. Next, you can deploy a channel bot to send anonymous messages.
You can send queer tasks to do, clues on who you are, fun pranks each day. Finally, on reveal day, mail them a gift, probably a tea taster set, handmade soaps, candles, chocolate, something they would use and remember. This is another fun way to weave your team closer.
8. Tree or Bob Ross
This is similar to Grandmaster or 20 Questions, only, it doesn’t have a restricted question count. It can either be played as a whole team or by forming small groups within.
As a team, one person is nominated, and they can fixate on anything, living or not. The rest have to ask questions and identify that thing. As a group, a moderator nominates one person from each group, giving each of them a thing to remember. The rest of the team has to ask questions to reveal it.
The twist is that there can only be either-or questions. To start with, the first question is, is it either like a tree (thing) or Bob Ross (a person). And after the one-word reply, the question changes. For example, if the thing given is a chair, the answer would be a tree. Then the next question can be wood or tall and so on.
This virtual team-building game is fun to engage your team in and can be a good ice breaker.
Fun remote team building challenges
This category includes remote team building challenges that connects your team over healthy challenges.
9. Online series trivia
We all binge-watch. Period.
Let us put that to good use, to engage team members and connect with them, even across oceans.
Trivia is a fun way to boast about the knowledge we got over the lockdown, on online series. The topics could be anything, but the online series is our recommendation. It is a familiar topic and could get even the introverts participating.
Divide your teammates into groups and start firing the questions. There, you’ve laid the groundwork for teamwork.
It can either be an ice breaker at the start or a way to finish off your weekly sessions. It could be a regular on your list. To spruce it up, you can award points, maintain a leaderboard and give tiny prizes (cute erasers work too!).
10. Pancakes vs. waffles
What better to engage your team than with debates?
This virtual team-building activity is a simple yet effective one for clubbing members together.
It starts with a vanilla question, pancakes, or waffles. Of course, everyone likes one much more than the other. After the team decides to choose the one, the option changes, say, waffles or french toasts.
This game has even the quietest ones talking. Everyone has an opinion and can share it openly on such lighter questions. But beware. The questions can quickly escalate to existential ones, such as love or friendship, career or passion.
Thus, the activity opens up everyone and gives a chance for everyone to hear and understand other’s opinions. These skills come in handy during work too.
11. Virtual MasterChef
The worldwide lockdown has compelled us to turn towards cooking, either for survival or for fun. Also, our biggest inspiration is binge-watching Masterchef. Hands down, been there, done that.
Let us take inspiration from there. The mystery boxes.
All members will be given a set of ingredients from which they get to choose and feature three, and hero one. This is a fun way to bond over food and also to inculcate healthy habits and clean eating.
You can step up the game by giving a list of exotic ingredients that are hard to mix and match. Just imagine being asked to combine the subtle-flavored dragon fruit, Australian vegemite, kohlrabi, lemons, and sesame. Yes, hell on earth.
Anyways, this is literally, bonding over food, a favorite for most of us. Members can create and talk about new combinations. You can spice it up by challenging your teammates to finish off what they made, edible or not.
12. Show and tell
This is a part of the remote team-building activities that also doubles up as skill-developing ones.
In a Zoom room, everyone chooses an object at arm’s length, on their desks and talks about it for at least 30 seconds. It can be as creative as the member wants or share a memorable experience, any direction they choose.
Thus, while this activity focuses on bonding through sharing, it also lays the groundwork for interpersonal skills such as public speaking and story-telling. You can also add a challenge by asking them to market it to the rest of the team.
13. DIY challenge
One of those virtual team-building activities that require effort is a DIY challenge.
Remember 2020, when we suddenly realized we had 24 hrs in a day to ourselves and jumped onto crazy trends and hobbies?
Challenge your team over a DIY competition to use those skills acquired during the lockdown. It is completely their choice, from paintings to macrame to even sock bunnies. Go on, crush that right brain.
14. Virtual trash challenge
We are all aware of the trending trash challenge where you post an image of a dirty place, clean up and post another picture after the clean-up the next day.
This one is exactly that, but indoors. Ask your teammates to post a picture of their cluttered desk, wardrobe, or lawn. Challenge them to clean up and post that image the next day.
While you have fun over guessing who’s place is the dirtiest, this activity also promotes a clean workplace and mind. You can also award the member with the cleanest before pic some points and maintain a leaderboard. If you’re a Monica, this is your cup of tea.
After all, cleanliness starts from your home.
15. Discover your talents
We all have several hidden talents and aspects that are yet to be revealed. This group activity is a great way to discover those and surprise yourselves.
During a session, you can organize an impromptu. Divide your team into groups and give them hypothetical critical situations, and ask them how they would come up with a solution.
Apart from engaging your team, this remote team-building activity reveals the hidden aspects of everyone and helps them refine those newfound talents.
Engaging virtual team building activities
This list includes the remote team-building activities that can engage your team. While they are ideal ice breakers, they can also induce healthy habits.
16. Fun icebreakers
With its members living oceans apart, remote teams need ice breakers, literally and figuratively. You can thus craft an amusing list of ice-breakers to open your meetings with. They are quick and get the job done.
Here is a list of fun icebreakers that have worked
- Favorite junk food that you would not feel guilty of cheating your diet with.
- Which channel did you grow up watching, Cartoon Network, Pogo, or Jetix?
- Right brain or left?
- Cat person or dog?
- Favorite song
- Quotes that truly inspire you
The options are endless. Curate a list, ask a different one on each session, and learn more about each other. This is the simplest one among the virtual team-building activities.
17. Who would I rather be friends with?
Have a friendly banter on which television or fictional character would each member rather be friends with. A small session with each member having 30 seconds to choose and explain why they chose that character. Who wouldn’t want to be one among the F.R.I.E.N.D.S or befriend Hagrid?
This is one of those virtual team-building activities that lets members learn a little more about each other. A quick session at the start will be an ideal ice breaker.
18. Donut calls
The food debate brings us to the next remote team-building activity. Slack has a channel called the Donut bot designed specifically for remote team members to connect over video calls.
The bot randomly pairs two members in the set time and prompts them to get on a 30-minute call. The members just have to be online at the specified time to be paired.
P.S: Work talks aren’t allowed.
This virtual team-building activity imposes the connection of teammates and lets everyone take a peek at each other’s personal life. It does all. Creates deeper connection, a sense of belonging, builds trust, friendships, and everything beyond.
Sometimes people get surprised at how similar their tastes are or how they grew to enjoy each other’s company. Thus, this activity is a must on your list.
19. Virtual picnics
Another simple way to bond over food. Virtual picnics.
This virtual team-building activity is exactly what the name says. Grab your lunch (home-made or takeaways), go to your most favorite spot in your house (or outside, if safe), video call your teammates, have lunch together, virtually.
This simple activity has more potential to connect people than any time-consuming one.
20. Virtual lunches or dinners
Similar to virtual picnics, you can plan on having virtual lunch or dinner dates with your team.
They can either prepare their own food or get a takeaway. Enter your virtual room, have fun connecting while having your lunch. This activity does not require time off work as it can be easily integrated into your usual lunch hours on one of the weekdays when planned ahead.
21. Virtual coffee breaks
Going to the pantry, having an unofficial meeting there while grabbing our beloved coffee (or chai) used to be a routine during those office-going days. This activity aims at connecting people by bringing back those moments.
It is nothing special. Just call someone during your coffee breaks (or beer :P). Chit-chat on the trending news or some hot gossip going around in your office, recapture those fun moments that knitted you all closer.
We all didn’t know these moments connected and transformed us as acquaintances rather than colleagues. Not those long meetings.
22. Speed typing test
Show off some typing skills to your team members. This activity is a healthy competition that tests your speed-typing skills, a requisite to work with computers.
Use the online type test tools available to conduct the competition. To make it challenging, conduct it as a series of competitions, and maintain a leaderboard.
23. Virtual book club
If you’re a book lover like me, this one is your go-to. What more than books to make your remote life interesting and productive?
This online team-building activity comes bearing great benefits. Books take you to a whole new world and help you de-stress, let you forget the loneliness, and engage at a deeper level.
Establishing a virtual book club encourages your team to read more books. You can conduct evening sessions to discuss the books each person has read.
A virtual book club probes members to interact, develop story-telling and summarizing skills. It also lets you gain knowledge over several books simultaneously. Further, it is one of the best team-building activities to make your quarantine interesting.
24. Virtual music and dance parties
Lockdown and remote working has made us lose our party vibes and moments of de-stressing during the weekends. Get back into the groove by organizing virtual music and dance parties. A great way to bring your team together.
Call your team for a Zoom meeting. Start your impromptu party, take them by surprise and see them go from shy to full-on party mode. We suggest you go first to encourage your team to join in.
25. Virtual happy hours
How much do we miss those happy hours and pub crawling?
Organize virtual happy hours to revisit those memories, and connect over your favorite drink.
Call for a zoom room meet and ask your team to grab their favorite drink or snack while they enter. Organize any of the above virtual team-building games or activities while enjoying a leisure drink.
There is no better way to connect everyone than social media, most recently, the Instagram reels. Let us put that to good use.
Ask your team members to post a 30-second reel video of their everyday routine. Not only does it help you get to know each other well but also, to be inspired through their activities and learn new things. It encourages members to stay productive, personal, or professional.
27. Create group playlists
Most of us work better with some music in the background. Thus, create a playlist on the most used music platform to make your team open up to each other and interact.
Share it with your team and ask them to add their repeat mode songs. It creates a good work playlist and has the conversation going. Wouldn’t we want to get to know a person with the same music taste?
You can also create categories, mood-wise. There can be a list of work mode full-on songs with heavy beats, soothing songs to relax after a stressful meeting, almost Friday happy weekend vibe songs, and whatnot.
28. My user manual
Sometimes, on a stressful day, when we don’t know how to react or how they might react to whatever we say, we’ve all thought it would have been better if that person had come along with a user manual.
It would be even better if everyone comes with one. Ask your team to design their own, including how they would like to be addressed, their principles, quotes that inspire them, etc. It can also include work-related FAQs such as their work routine, what time they have their productivity peaks and when they would like to be left alone, and so on.
This virtual team-building idea helps your team members in understanding each other on a deeper level and develop smooth conversations without hurting each other’s sentiments.
29. How you doin’?
This virtual activity goes beyond Joey’s pickup lines.
We all face stress in some form every day. The stress levels have shot up since the onset of the pandemic.
The stress might even scale up to depression or anxiety. Oftentimes than not, most of us don’t even realize that we’re going through an anxiety attack or phase. We think it is normal.
This activity is an exclusive zoom room session to enquire everyone’s physical and mental health. You can discuss your past experiences, challenges faced in overcoming them, medical help you had, etc. It would greatly help people who face similar situations.
Apart from engaging your team, it also creates awareness of mental health. Thus, this health monitoring activity is a must-do on your list of remote team-building activities.
30. Remote work buddies
Working in isolation is one of the major reasons affecting team integration and productivity.
Overcome that isolation by encouraging your team members to team up while working. They can just hit someone up over Zoom while working. They then stay online in the video call and continue working with occasional banters and discussions.
It has a wide range of benefits. It gives them the feeling of sharing their desk space or having their desk neighbor back. Besides, pep talks are also not uncommon. This setup greatly helps them motivate each other to stay productive.
If no one is available, hit someone up on Focusmate, and there, you have a work buddy.
Team-building is a crucial part of your strategic planning especially, with remote working in effect.
Engage your team and encourage them to connect with each other. This goes a long way in improving their productivity, loyalty, and job satisfaction. Also, the company culture diversifies and improves by establishing fully functional teams that work in harmony.
After all, teamwork is dream work.
We, at Multiplier, work to help you in planning such strategies. You take care of your company and its employees while we take care of your HR wing.
We act as your local HR team and provide complete assistance in going global. We provide EOR services with local legal teams to help you set up teams across borders. As PEOs, we help you stay compliant with local labor laws and regulations. We also regulate your global payroll and global employee benefits.
If you are looking to outsource your HR, we sincerely hope your search ends with us.
Contact us to learn more.