If you aren’t using ice breakers in your virtual meetings, now is the time to start. Even on an established team, short social activities can set the right tone for productivity and cooperation throughout the workday. A short game of Pictionary on a Google Meet virtual background can get a team thinking creatively. Each person displaying a favorite photo they’ve taken that week can help a team get to know one another. These simple activities benefit the long-term health and happiness of your virtual workplace.
Help Team Build Personal Bonds
It’s easier to work with people when you know a little bit about them. Learning about the lives and personalities of coworkers helps you find the right approach when asking for a favor or collaborating on a project.
In a virtual work environment without water coolers or break rooms, it’s more difficult to build these bonds. It’s also common for remote workers to feel isolated and resist asking for help or reaching out with questions. To create the most cohesive team, everyone should have some basic knowledge of their coworkers as people.
That’s where ice breakers come into play. On a new team or an established one, choose a few virtual ice breakers that highlight the personality of everyone participating. A few ideas for get-to-know-you ice breakers include:
- Sharing of a personal fun fact
- Talking about family and friends
- Two truths and a lie
- Would you rather
- Choosing favorite songs, TV shows, or movies
Including one of these ice breakers at the start of every virtual meeting will put your team on the path to getting to know one another. Increased collaboration and productivity naturally follow.
Make Time for Fun at Work
Working for every second of the day doesn’t always lead to getting more done. Breaks allow the mind time to refresh and refocus. One of the best ways to take a break is to engage in a fun activity and insert a burst of laughter into the workday.
A fun ice breaker goes a long way toward getting a remote team excited and participating in zoom meetings. One example of a fun activity is seeing who can come up with the most groan-worthy puns about the meeting topic. Another may be switching to a humorous Microsoft teams background. Make sure all team members are participating in the ice breaker, and that engagement will carry over to the meeting itself.
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Develop Team Culture While Working Remotely
A team culture within a company can be an important leg up. A consistent team culture both communicates expectations and helps different employees unite on tasks and pick similar tactics when faced with difficulties.
It’s possible to develop a strong team culture even without in-person interaction. Over time, ice breakers can establish a tone and culture among remote team members.
Virtual workspaces save employees time commuting and can greatly improve employee hiring and retention. Using ice breakers and free teams backgrounds, a fully remote team can come together and collaborate on tasks as well as an in-person team.