Team outings are a great way to give your staff a mental break. Plus, providing opportunities for your employees to spend time together outside your place of business improves workplace performance and can help you build a team that will transform your company.
The activities most likely to reduce stress and promote bonding don’t always have to include getting together in person, however. Here are 5 virtual team outing ideas your small business can start organizing today.
1. Work Out or Wind Down
You don’t need to meet at a gym to work out or wind down with your team. Co-workers can take turns putting together a mood-appropriate selection of music and leading YouTube-inspired yoga routines, mindfulness meditations, or strength training sessions over Facetime, Google Hangouts, or Zoom.
Pro Tip: No weights at home? Substitute canned goods or bottled water.
2. Trivia Time
With Canadian-born game craze Trivial Pursuit for inspiration, use a free random trivia generator – or create your own questions around a shared interest, TV show or movie – and have your team meet up on their favourite video platform. You can compete as individuals or split into teams, but one group member should play host by asking the questions and keeping score.
Pro Tip: Game play will flow better if you design and display shareable slides of each trivia question.
3. Digital Happy Hour with a Twist
Digital happy hours are popular ice-breakers (pun intended). But you can give yours an added twist by sending team members a recipe for a signature cocktail (or mocktail) in advance and then creating your refreshments together online.
Pro Tip: This is a great time for colleagues to engage over a lateral thinking question (If you were alone in a dark cabin with only one match, which would you light first – the lamp, the fireplace, or the candle?) or a personal preference (If you could eat only one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?).
4. Virtual Dance Party
For groups that feel comfortable together – or that want to start feeling comfortable, quickly – hosting a virtual dance party over Zoom is easy and free. Just pick a dedicated DJ to initiate the Zoom “meeting” and stream a curated playlist of dance hits from their favourite music app through their computer.
Pro Tip: Consider combining your dance party with a virtual happy hour event – or switching it out for a lip sync karaoke contest.
5. Online Pictionary
Pictionary is easy to play online. To prepare, the game host creates a category of phrases to be sketched (like movie titles, for example) and splits the group into two teams. The players set up on-camera whiteboards or large drawing pads (if you play over Zoom, you can use the built-in digital whiteboard). The host then randomly selects and texts or emails a phrase to each player in turn.
Pro Tip: If your group prefers something a little more physical, use the same phrases for a game of online charades.
Here’s a fun creative challenge: Ask everyone to build something useful for the office – or something that represents your mission as a team – using only items from their recycling bins, junk drawers, or kids’ rooms. Then schedule a time to meet up online for a group show-and-tell.
Remember, variety is the spice of life and team outing ideas are limited only by your imagination. You’ll find endless inspiration for virtual events and activities online – and a few productivity-powering activities here for the next time your group meets up in person.