With social distancing in place, workforces around the world are working remotely in their homes. As an employer or a manager, it is up to you to establish a good strong team despite the present circumstances.
The Importance of Connectedness
Let’s say your team is a car. Each part might be fully functional and in excellent condition. Brake pads, belts, pistons, car seats, car stereos, mufflers, and all the other parts of a car will not be worth much unless they are put together and connected to the chassis.
It falls to you, as the manager or employer, to make sure your team runs like a well-oiled machine even under these extraordinary times. This is one of the reasons why team building activities exist. More than having each individual perform their work excellently on their own, you need to make sure they also work well together.
5 Team Building Activities Remote Teams Can Do to Strengthen Their Bond
1. Collaborative Software
Working from home means limited human interaction. One way to remedy this is to work with software and apps that allow people to still interact online. Apps like Slack or Hangouts and other similar collaborative software let people from different parts of the world connect with each other and allow you to conduct team-building activities without doing any conference calls or multi-person video chats.
2. Happy Hour
Most companies now have a happy hour on certain days to talk about anything under the sun except things related to work. You can schedule your team’s virtual happy hour to allow them to unwind and relax. Studies claim that despite its non-work-related discussions, these happy hours help boost engagement in the workplace.
Another great way of getting your team to know each other more and to find out some of their other strengths is to hold friendly non-work-related contests. Photography or art contests help showcase their creative side while cooking contests are always fun. You can even have a theme decor contest with Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas fast approaching.
Remember that reality show from MTV where celebrities invite camera crews to their homes and give the audience a virtual tour of the place? You can do something similar by having your team members showcase their home or home office. You can assign a different member each week to let you into their homes and show you what their life is like apart from work. This gives each member a better idea of the person’s style, interests, hobbies, and lifestyle.
5. 5 Questions
Using collaborative software and apps, create a channel where you and your team can interact and talk. Think of five questions and send them to everyone in the chatroom. At the end of the day or week (depending on how frequently you want it), gather together online and answer the questions one by one, making sure each member has given his or her answer.
Sample questions are:
- What do you think is an underrated TV show?
- Who is the greatest athlete of all time?
- What is one movie that you won’t mind seeing over and over even if it is the last remaining movie on the planet?
Just a note, when coming up with questions, do your best to veer away from controversial and divisive topics such as politics and religion. Your goal is to bring the team closer together, not tear it apart.
Having a team of talented and highly-skilled individuals is good for any company. But a team of top-notch workers who know how to excellently work with each other — even remotely — will be the envy of many a company. Productivity at work is boosted because of the camaraderie they have. If you successfully turn your team into one that functions as a family there’s no limit to what they can do and achieve, even if they are working from home.