It’s Business as Unusual.

Companies around the world have been flipped upside down. Team building has been pushed aside as a priority as more people are working from home than ever before and employee morale has plummeted. Team building activities are desperately needed in the workplace… but nobody is in the workplace.

While you can never substitute the benefits of in-person experiential team building activities, it’s important people don’t forget they’re part of a team. Through Urban Quest’s experience of team building activities, we’ve compiled some of our favourite NON-CRINGEY team building activities to keep team spirit up while everyone’s working from home.

1. Guess the Artist

Let’s start with a simple one that never fails. Before a meeting you ask everyone to anonymously pick and send in a picture (this could be a picture online of something that resonates with them, a picture of a pet, their desk or something they drew themselves). Everyone goes around and guesses who they think chose each picture. You go around again as everyone reveals what picture they chose and why. Whoever picked the most right wins! A great way to understand your co-workers better, which should make this game easier and easier the more often you play.

2. Kahoot is an awesome DIY trivia game that lets anyone create their own quiz and play with whoever they want! Take it in turns writing a quiz each week as the host picks their own topic (or something company related) and quizzes their co-workers. Games can run for as long or as short as you like and are a great way to add a pinch of competition into the office.

3. Iron Chef Lunch

Once a week the manager picks a secret ingredient (e.g. carrots, rice, basil, etc) and cooked at home or ordered in, everyone’s lunches must contain that ingredient. Jump on your video conferencing software of choice and talk through what everyone’s eating and how they incorporated the ingredient – points for creativity. Food brings people together and a weekly Iron Chef lunch is a great way to forget about work for a while and really get to know your co-workers.

4. gif Battles

Sometimes it’s good to test out the other side of your brain, let loose and have a laugh. Using this Trello template (which will talk you through the rules) you can square your workers off in a good old fashion .gif battle. See who has the quick wit and who has the most wicked sense of humor.

5. Collaborative Playlists

Wanting to maintain the fun without the competition? See what makes people tick and create a collaborative playlist on Spotify. Everyone can listen along and add their own songs. You can go for a theme, a particular mood or just see what everyone else’s favourites are. This is a great way to create a sense of community and space even when divided across the city, country or even the world.

It’s safe to assume that once the dust has settled a portion of employers will discover that they can save on a range of costs by allowing their employees to work from home going forward. This will come with many benefits for both the employer and employee while increasing the importance of corporate team building events, to ensure people are still working and growing together as a team.

Team building and in-person events are the glue that not only keeps a team together, but keeps them thriving. It is essential to keep employees challenged and entertained if you want to get the most out of them, and the best way to do that is with an engaging team building event. But with the world caught in the middle of an international pandemic we’ll have to make do with alternatives.

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