5 min read
Are you in need of a quick fix of fun and laughter for your virtual meetings? We have all been to Zoom socials and know that the platform is extremely limited when it comes to supporting remote teams and virtual mingling. As you know, we are a widely distributed team, so facilitating the most engaging online meetings is especially important to us. That’s why we decided to keep a little black book of activities and icebreaker games to spice up our own virtual meetings. Here it is - enjoy, and happy meetings!
Watercooler talks and different Slack channels can only take you so far. You probably need to go the extra mile if you’re managing a virtual community. Getting your remote team happy, engaged, and united in this work-from-home era is easier than you think. So don’t panic! We’re here to help.
From “Team Photos” to “Guess the Desk”, these online meeting activities will turn coworkers and acquaintances into a virtual community. Buckle up!
Yes, your team is working virtually, but that doesn’t (and shouldn’t) stop you from taking team pictures. Photographs are great because they allow you to save memories, and it’s as easy as taking a screenshot. We dare to say that taking a virtual photo with your team is as fun as taking one in real life! You can repeat it a thousand times, and you have plenty to improvise with - faces, gestures, props around your desk, virtual backgrounds (like ChromaCam and ManyCam), pets, and filters (we recommend Snap Camera). Get creative! We hope this inspires you to take great pictures from now on!
💡 Extra Tip: These photos also make nice content for your social media channels, for your newsletters, and for sharing on Slack!
This game is so much fun and soooo simple that it is unbelievable. The goal is to have your team trying to learn a bunch of fun and cool stuff about each other until they find something they all have in common. If you have a bigger team, maybe split it into a few smaller ones. It is super fun because you never know what random interests and experiences you have in common with your colleagues. It could range from hating ABBA to having taken violin classes; from a peanut allergy to have had a golden retriever growing up. How cool is that? There aren’t a lot of opportunities to learn random trivia about people, especially when you are all distributed and remote.
💡Extra tip: Save all the answers in a spare document or Slack channel. And at the end of each year, go back to that document and rewind to these amazing memories that you made virtually.
Do you want a better way to get to know your team a bit better? You are familiar with their background on video calls, and what they have behind their backs, but you probably never imagined what they could be looking at when working.
Start a virtual activity around this - ask everyone on your team for a pic of their workspace and share them (maybe one per day or week) on your communication channels. Or even better, make a Kahoot! Ask everyone to guess who they think that desk belongs to. This will be a team-building experience that will for sure help start conversations and break the ice on your next online meeting.
💡Extra Tip: You can also do this with other spaces in the house like the fridge, the pantry, bathroom, or even the bookshelf. You can tell a lot about someone from how they organize their physical space - have some fun with it!
For this activity, all you need to do is ask everyone on your team to go to their phones and share the last photo on their camera roll.
(Here’s the last pic that a member of our team took. How pretty is this sunset?)
💡Extra tip: You can do this activity while on a video call or online meeting. Or you can ask people to post them on your Slack channel - perhaps once a week. If you choose the latter, we suggest you do it on the day you have a team meeting or catch up, so you can use it to kick off the conversation.
Icebreaker questions are the gateway to simple 5-minute activities that can generate a lot of good conversations. It can be a simple question such as “What did you have for breakfast?” or as out-there as “What’s your favorite dragon?” (Someone actually asked Antonia - our CEO - that recently, and it started a seriously deep conversation. Not kidding). You can go as random and funny as you want. It goes without saying, however, that you should avoid offensive questions and always respect people’s boundaries. We recommend icebreaker questions for every virtual activity that your team might have: a regular virtual meeting, some virtual happy hour, one-on-one, all hands, etc.
💡Extra Tip: Keep it short and start slowly, especially if your team is rather new or if you are onboarding someone new. Also, to make it less chaotic, set an order in which each person responds. If you're on Toucan, that’s easy as the order you see on the screen is the same for everyone. Other video software platforms might not work this way, but you can always decide an order (alphabetically or by age).
Emojis are a language that we all speak. They’re so popular because they help us express what we’re feeling better than plain text. So, why not turn this into a virtual meeting activity?
All you need to do is ask people to take a screenshot of their most-used emojis on their phone or computer. As they say, emojis are the window into the soul.
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Sara knows some things about marketing, has 3 cats, loves to go for hikes and organize things by color!
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