Remote work places have so many advantages. However, it can be difficult to break the ice with new team members, given the lack of face-to-face interaction throughout the year. This is why we wanted to stress the importance of icebreaker activities that can be done in remote workplaces. It can be hard to conjure up non-invasive ice breaker questions, and even harder to hold ice breakers for virtual meetings. So we have cultivated some great activities that will be sure to aid your team members in getting to know each other!
There may be no ‘i’ in team, but the importance of the individual within a team can not be stressed enough. If one team member feels isolated, left out, unwanted, or undervalued, it is sure to present itself in their work. That is why ice breaker games are so imperative to building a sense of community in the workplace, rather than cogs working on behalf of a machine. Your workers should feel valued, wanted, and included in all aspects of the team. So, take some time to familiarize yourself with some of the best five-minute ice breaker activities to try in remote workplaces! But first, some insight on the relevance of ice breakers.
When To Use Icebreakers
Ice breakers need to be quick and an efficient use of time. That being said, it is important to be sure that the goal of the icebreaker is not compromised due to a tight schedule. It is important to allocate time toward icebreakers in order to familiarize new and old team members with one another.
New Team Members. The most challenging aspect of introducing a new member to a team includes any preconceived notions they may have regarding other team members. These notions can arise for any reason, but should be nipped in the bud immediately with a sufficient ice breaker. Ice breakers will help alleviate stereotypes and forge new connections. New and existing team members will learn to relate to each other in ways they might not have known were possible!
Remote Teams. While remote teams may or may not be familiar with one another, the lack of face-to-face interactions can limit results and prevent the fostering of company culture. The ability to visually read physical and facial cues is an important facet of communication. This is why video calls are always recommended over messaging and over-the-phone calls. When participating in an icebreaker with remote workers, it is important that video calls are utilized rather than their communicative counterparts that have less than efficient results.
Benefits Of Icebreakers
Icebreakers are great for new introductions, encouraging the right atmosphere, getting everyone thinking creatively, and preparing everyone for what comes next. Initiating an icebreaker game is a fun way to quickly engage the team, and make introductions more interesting and personal. Icebreakers also force participants to communicate and interact differently than usual, which will prove to be useful as team members begin brainstorming processes.
Icebreakers are known to stimulate creativity by encouraging team members to come up with a unique description or humorous story that opens the participants up to a less structured way of communicating. These activities are more common and beneficial now than ever due to the huge chunk of the workforce transitioning into remote workplaces. For a team to be successful, they must act and think like a team. This all begins with the confidence and inclusion of every individual.
The Best Icebreakers For Remote Workplaces
Take A Picture. This ice breaker was developed as a quick game for remote teams. To begin, ask each team member to take a picture of something on their desk and post it to an online page. Each team member should pick something that best describes them and their work methods. It can even be something silly! Take turns explaining why that item was chosen. A second option is for team members to take photos of their shoes and upload them. Be sure to take turns doing screen shares so everyone can participate! Someone’s choice of shoes can say a lot about them! This is an easy and fast method to learn something personal—with a work twist—about everyone on the team.
Favorite Things. How one plays the game is indicative of the title. Team members simply name their favorite things! This game can be adapted to align with the goal of the meeting, the work environment, or even something more personal. This works well for remote teams because everyone can participate!
The icebreaker works by assigning a topic. Possibilities may include the team’s “favorite thing about the company” or “favorite aspect of the product”. Each team member should present an image and a short description online. This will be sure to stir the creativity of the participants and make an ideal springboard to brainstorming when it comes to work.
10 Common Things. 10 Common Things is a game that is a perfect fit for teams that work remotely. To start, the team must be grouped into smaller sections and then asked to come up with a list of 10 things that they all have in common. It is recommended that remote teams use a shared document or an online whiteboard in order to generate a list quickly. If leaders prefer to keep the topic more business-oriented, the list may be limited to work or industry-related topics.
Regardless of the team member’s answers, this game is sure to create a bond, generate discussion and laughter, and get the group thinking creatively. Be sure to allocate enough time for each section to share their list with the team as a whole on the online whiteboard. This will create a dynamic atmosphere that will be well suited to work together!
Cultivating A Sense Of Community
Now that you have your selection of icebreakers, introduce them to your team during a meeting! Or, if you aren’t confident in your abilities to host an efficient icebreaker, check us out at TriviaHub!
Over 10,000 companies of all shapes and sizes trust us when it comes to hosting a fun, memorable, and team building event that is sure to increase productivity and team member mood!