Working remotely is now the new reality for many companies. With that in mind, a question you might find yourself asking is, “How do I continue to keep my employees motivated in a remote setting?” or “What are some of the best team building activities for remote teams?”
Remote Work Can Be Tough
Your employees may love the benefits of working remotely – such as wearing their pajamas all day (because c’mon – who doesn’t enjoy that?). But there are also some drawbacks to remote work, and the extroverts on your team can attest to this. Loneliness and isolation are prevalent. Some individuals love daily interaction and may become disconnected and unmotivated when left to their own devices.
Now more than ever, it is essential that companies create employee engagement by continuing to motivate their employees and building their company culture – by doing so virtually.
Start the Conversation
First things first, communication is key. All teams should have a direct messaging or workspace chat room already implemented. At Pro R.E.A. Staffing we use Slack. The beauty of Slack is that you create specific channels for team conversations. Two channels, in particular, that our team has implemented are the #random and #gratitude channels. Our #random channel is for non-work banter and water-cooler conversations. From random memes to off-the-cuff subjects, this is the place where hilarity ensues. Our #gratitude channel is simply that, a place to express what we are most thankful for and to thank one another. This channel is an example of how we try to build camaraderie amongst our team in a virtual setting.
Share a Smile
Weekly or daily video conference calls is also the new norm now. Whether your team uses Zoom, Google Meet, or Microsoft Teams to touch base, these conference calls are the gateway to team building. After your team discusses the business at hand, adding virtual games or activities can create an opportunity for your team to engage in some fun! This should be the time that your team can interact on a social level, away from the daily grind of work.
Make It Fun
Virtual icebreaker games can be a great way to introduce virtual team building activities. Our team played “Two Truths and a Lie” when we first rolled out virtual team building exercises. The game is simple: two true facts about yourself and one fib, your fellow team members play detectives trying to determine which statement is a lie. Not only did our team end up laughing hysterically, but we truly valued the time we spent together. Our team now conducts monthly virtual team building games, ranging from Jeopardy to Guess My Favorite Covid-19 Meme. Needless to say, our team looks forward to these activities to unwind and connect with one another. Looking for ideas? Online you can find a plethora of other icebreakers and virtual games.
Cater to Your Team
The BEST part about implementing team building activities is that you can design them to cater to your team. Does your team miss happy hour at the neighborhood bar? Then why not schedule a Zoom Cocktail Hour? Our team members enjoy reading books so we created a virtual Book Club. Together, as a team, we have reflected on numerous books including Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates and Daring Greatly by Brene Brown.
Pro R.E.A. Staffing is also fortunate to have a resident yoga guru and instructor (our Marketing Manager, Madison). Madison leads us in virtual yoga sessions. Not only has yoga heightened our inner awareness and physical endurance, but it has strengthened our sense of community.
When working on a remote team, it is important to provide your employees with a sense of belonging. No matter the distance and/or time zones apart, your team is built on collaboration and connection. Just because you can’t currently visit the “Happiest Place on Earth” doesn’t mean that you can’t create a happy place (safe at home) for your team.