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Fun Tips and Tricks to Boost Team Building in a Remote World

June 17, 2020

Like many companies, we have all become acclimated to working remotely since COVID-19 disrupted what we once knew a few months ago. This has not only changed the way we work, but for employees used to working in an office, it has also limited our ability to connect with our co-workers.

iStock-884273286Some of your team may have completely adjusted to this way of working, while others may be feeling the fatigue. Being successful as a remote team means finding ways to recapture the in-person connection. Luckily, my team has successfully stayed connected by implementing the ideas below. Could they help your team stick together and stay engaged 

Online Happy Hours

Set aside a time for a face-to-face chat with your team. Turn those cameras on! You'll be surprised at how effective these types of interactions can be.

  • Host a "remote watercooler" – special guests encouraged. There is nothing cuter than a baby hanging out on screen alongside your team! Other highlights from our team calls have included grooming cats and happy dog tails wagging in the background. 

  • With things as they have been, work has become the primary connection to the outside world for many of usChatting about the latest show on Netflix, interesting cooking projects, or even just the weather can help alleviate stress and introduce some normalcy for your employees. 

Team Building Activities

For larger groups, everyone talking at once on a call doesn’t work as well, but there are other options to bring your team together.   

  • Keep it light. Online quiz apps like Kahoot are great conversation starters and fun way to discover common interests among your team. 

  • In our cross-country, multi-generational team, we have found a surprising amount of common ground on pop-culture quizzes. Those more out of their element on the quiz topic can still score with quick responses and lucky guesses.  

Email chains

This works best when used no more than weekly for larger groups, with responses to specific items sent only to the original sender. Encourage employees to share what’s meaningful to them! 

  • Pictures of pets and kids. We all love seeing your work-from-home co-workers 

  • Other chains can be email games, where someone shares a list of their favorite things (i.e. book, snack, beverage, hobby) then tags one person to fill in the list next. This is also a great way to share recommendations on what to watch, read, or listen to next! 

Other ways to connect across the broader organization include utilizing work chat tools, such as Yammer or Slack 

Connecting remotely in a fun way can help alleviate stress and help your team to see their colleagues as a people rather than just an email signature. In addition to better understanding each other, low stakes remote chats can provide practice on how to continue to communicate in this remote work environment and keep your team from feeling stressed 

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Lillian Bradshaw Lillian Bradshaw is a Senior Consulting Associate at PSI. She supports a variety of clients, including global manufacturing and pharmaceutical companies, with a wide range of hiring needs. Her expertise in analyzing and presenting client data facilitates effective and efficient selection processes. More specifically, she administers executive assessments and assists clients in executing internal development initiatives at multiple levels of corporate structure, from directors to C-Suite executives. She also supports new assessment implementations, develops training materials, and answers questions regarding PSI’s workforce-solutions tools and processes.