- It’s never been more important to step back from the day-to-day and have a little fun with your team.
- Here are 10 virtual activities for you and your team to enjoy anytime and anyplace (with a WiFi connection).
- From a gingerbread bake-off to online quiz rounds, let the fun commence!
Wow, what a year.
With employee burnout at a high and everything else we’ve had to contend with in 2020, it’s never been more important to take a step back and have some fun.
Here are 10 virtual activities for you and your team to enjoy anytime and anyplace (with a WiFi connection). They’re perfect for marking festive occasions or making an average Monday merry and memorable.
1. Virtual Secret Santa
Secret santa is suitable for all traditional gift giving holidays.
The concept is simple: you enter all of your teams’ names into a hat and everyone draws out a name and buys a gift for that person. This year, you can open them together at your virtual team party and guess who bought what for whom.
Instead of something that’ll inevitably end up in the bin, you could encourage your coworkers to give something more meaningful this December.
How about a ‘coffee, cake and catch up’ voucher the recipient can cash in following lockdown, or ‘5 ice creams’ to cash in when pick-me-ups are needed?
2. Virtual Escape Room
Unfortunately most escape rooms have had to close their doors to groups this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, however many are offering online experiences.
Team-building aside, escape rooms are great for, well, ‘escaping’ the realities of work for a bit. As the name suggests, the aim of the game is to escape the room by solving problems and puzzles as a team.
3. Let’s Get Quizzical
Everyone was a little fatigued by quizzes by May this year, but let’s face it: come December we’ll be ready for the next round. One of the keys to a successful online team quiz is to make it tactical and get people moving around their homes.
Here are a few ideas for rounds:
- Solve an anagram that is the name of a household object and find said object in your home – the first one to find it wins.
- Dress up as something using what you have in your home. If you have lots of loo roll but not much else, you could dress up as a mummy?!
- Charades is always a winner and can be even more hilarious online. This year, you could get your teammates to act out an event from 2020.
4. Online Workshops
Online workshops provide people with an opportunity to learn new skills while having fun with others. You could arrange a few workshops to accommodate different interests.
There are lots of companies out there who will run a workshop for your team. Options include virtual art lessons, cooking workshops – or if you’re after something a little more ‘merry’, a cocktail making masterclass or wine/beer tasting session.
5. Gingerbread Bake Off
This one hits the sweet spot both in terms of taste and timing.
Send everyone on your team a DIY gingerbread house (there are lots on Etsy). Everyone can enjoy making and decorating their houses while having a chat (break out into separate rooms if there are lots of people).
To give the activity a competitive edge, you could give awards at the end for the ‘best interior design’, ‘most structurally sound’… and anything else you can think of.
6. Sofa Karaoke
People who loathe karaoke have a get out of jail free card this year, but virtual alternatives are available for those who absolutely love it. A quick internet search will bring up a range of apps and checklists that make hosting virtual karaoke parties perfectly do-able.
Cue the Christmas hits!
7. Holiday Playlists
Speaking of hits, every festive party needs festive tunes. In the absence of a DJ, get your entire team to choose the tracks by collaborating on a soundtrack.
Use an online music service like Spotify to create a party playlist, invite employees to add their favourite tunes and press play during your virtual get together. You could get employees to explain why they chose their song and what it means to them.
8. Online Pictionary
Put a festive spin on this classic game by getting team members to draw scenes from famous festive films or novels.
For instance, you could sketch out the burglars trying to break into the McCallister’s booby-trapped house in Home Alone or the ghost of Jacob Marley visiting Scrooge in A Christmas Carol. Instead of paper, you can use the drawing feature on your video conferencing platform of choice.
9. A Night Out (In)
To take some of the pressure off organising a virtual event for your team, you could always treat them to tickets to a virtual event.
A range of comedy shows, music gigs and theatre performances are taking place on the online stage this year. As well as giving everyone something to look forward to, it’s a great way to support the arts in a time of need.
10. Festive Talent Show
Almost everyone has a hidden party trick up their sleeve, whether it’s being able to lick their elbow or turn a carrot into a recorder (yes, that is a thing). We wouldn’t frame an entire virtual event around a talent show, but creating space for one in your virtual party will make it even more memorable!
Virtual event checklist
When it comes to virtual events, the proof is in the planning. Be sure to factor in the following steps before letting the fun commence:
- Compile a guest list (to some extent how many people you have will determine what activity you can run).
- Choose your virtual activity and start planning it.
- Pick a videoconferencing service. e.g. Zoom, Skype, Jitsi, Google Hangouts…
- Send out virtual invitations well in advance (you’ll be surprised at how quickly some peoples’ calendars fill up with virtual events). Include a description of the activity, any instructions, the length, dress code, etc.
- Test the technology beforehand.
- Send out reminders on the morning of the event – it can be easy to forget events in the absence of travel arrangements.
Whatever you end up planning this year, we hope you have fun!