During today’s global pandemic, it is important that your team members still feel connected, engaged, and communicated well with while CEOs make firm business decisions. To promote camaraderie and employee engagement while still maintaining social distancing, most companies have already adapted the work-from-home approach. It doesn’t only allow flexibility and diversity of ideas, but it’s also proven to create more efficient time use.
Even on virtual teams, holding team-building activities is no longer a taboo. Team buildings aren’t only fun and socially engaging. They also boost your team members’ morale because it creates work-life balance. According to the Harvard Business Review, “close work friendships boost employee satisfaction by 50%.” Adding to it that, “people with a best friend at work are seven times more likely to engage fully in their work.” During chaotic times, it is best to keep an optimistic and vibrant attitude in which the whole team can find support from. According to studies, team building activities had positive effects on several career elements such as goal setting, problem-solving, interpersonal relations, as well as cognitive, affective, and performance outcomes. Level up your remote team with these activities that will surely strengthen it and let each and everyone seek better team collaboration!
Virtual Team Meetings
Remote team meetings are more than just agenda planning. Similar to teammates within a co-location (minus the group coffee breaks), virtual team meetings also create engagement between team members.
Most team meetings use video-teleconference (VTC) software such as Skype, Hangouts, or Zoom among others. The discussions in these meetings can be as cohesive and strategic as talking about your company goals and plans or as fun and diverse as just getting to know your teammates. If you’ll be doing the former, here are some questions you can share around the virtual conference table:
· What are you excited about when going to work?
· What is keeping you busy outside work hours?
· What do you wish to try that you haven’t yet?
With questions like these, team members practice feeling empathy towards each other and also help everyone get a glimpse of each other by sharing pieces of their lives. When the virtual meeting is done with the video element of the VTC software, it is easier to gauge expressions and presence even if it is only remote.
As a token of appreciation for the hard work and value your employee contributes to your company, a small gift can be arranged such as a coffee shop gift card within their area. In the coffee session activity, employees are encouraged to get out of their cozy work from home set up and work remotely at a different co-working space for a day. In this case, a lovely coffee shop! To make this into a team-building activity, each employee will have to take a photo of themselves while they are working on a coffee shop and share their snaps at the company group chat. This will encourage conversation and avoid burnout for employees who feel the lack of interaction and change to an upbeat environment from time to time.
Desk Photo Contest
Just as the name suggests, a desk photo contest is another way to let your employees engage. Each team member simply has to take a snap of their work station or their work from home desk set-up, post it in the group chat, and simply provide a brief explanation on the inspiration of the set-up.
Three Truths and a Lie
This game has a pretty simple concept and is great for starting teams because it doesn’t only let someone introduce themselves but it also eliminates awkwardness and adds entertainment in the process.
Rule: Hold a video conference and ask each member to tell three truths and one lie about themselves. Make sure that the lie doesn’t come off as an obvious lie to spice the game up. Other team members will guess which is the lie. When everyone has finished guessing, the answer will be revealed. Whoever gets the right one gets the point.
Interactive activities along with collaborative effort from everyone in the team can create and continue already established strong connections within remote teams.