With companies thrust into virtual working during the pandemic, many businesses are now choosing to operate with remote teams, with employees working at home or split between the office. This means that now more than ever, employees need to reconnect and recharge. Building team relationships by participating in activities and encouraging collaboration can drive up employee morale and in turn boost engagement and productivity.
What is virtual team building?
Traditional team building is the practice of getting employees together to complete activities together (such as a treasure hunt) or attend an event (such as an escape room). This practice helps employees to have fun, bond and integrate together outside of a formal work-constrained setting. Virtual team building transposes these ideas into an online format, ideal for remote teams and the added benefit of zero travel.
Why is virtual team building important?
Implementing virtual team building for remote workers is essential for cultivating a healthy work culture, as well as improving employees’ skills and metrics. These skills can include confidence, leadership, engagement, productivity, time management, communication, problem-solving, and many more.
Team building exercises improve communication skills and can develop and identify leadership skills. All of these activities are designed with skills-building in mind. The majority of team building activities are built for collaboration, communication, and teamwork. Often, these activities present opportunities for developing leadership skills in groups, which in turn identifies employees that are comfortable in leadership roles, as well as demonstrating their leadership styles.
Building a strong team doesn’t happen overnight. You may have a team that meshes well organically; however, it is up to team leaders to reinforce relationships with effective strategies. Team building will be one of the most important business investments that you make.
Virtual team building activities help create a relaxed and fun work environment. Laid-back events such as virtual cocktail making can allow co-workers to learn more about each other, have some light-hearted banter and give colleagues ways to connect beyond work. The increased communication helps team members to connect in a more proactive way and gives them the tools to connect better at work.
With teams spread across cities, countries, and potentially the world, chances are they can become isolated and therefore be less proactive and productive. Offering reconnection events such as an online escape room and giving employees the opportunity to engage and solve challenges together, leads to company appreciation and in turn, higher productivity.
Remote work has proven to be a great solution for many, but we should recognise that it can be isolating. Many people find themselves feeling lonely and disconnected after working from home for long periods of time. Regular, non-scheduled interaction is lost. Getting everyone together virtually presents an opportunity for co-workers to catch up and interact with each other outside of the requirements and constraints of work.
Team leaders must encourage their teams to work together effectively by conducting virtual team building activities such as group discussions, online meetings, brainstorming, casual meetups. Creating optimism and good morale generated enthusiasm and excitement.
Many projects cannot work without an element of communication or collaboration. When employees are working virtually, the challenge becomes; how can my team stay connected? Leaders must think about how they can encourage teams to collaborate and communicate efficiently and build relationships between colleagues.
Mental health improvement
Work can be stressful. The past couple of years has been even more stressful, with uncertainty around job security as well as other anxieties. This increased worry can take a toll on individuals and can negatively impact the team. Offering employees a scheduled way to let off steam and take a mental health break such as a virtual game show, can help individuals to have fun, step back, relax and build a better team.
Creativity levels can slump when you’re working from home without your team. Opportunities that offices present, such as brainstorming together, are no longer there. A remote team building event such as a virtual bake-off offers the opportunity to reconnect and get inspired together as a team.
Virtual team building activities help strengthen a team by bringing everyone together. However, they can also be an opportunity for individuals to have fun, relax and take a break. Enjoying colleagues’ company in sharing an experience is an entertaining and fresh way to bond and pass some time together.
Teambuilding activities and events are a great way to make meetings more fun, as well as a way to engage employees beyond their scope of work. It is important to remember that despite now being virtual, colleague relationships are important for businesses to thrive.
If you are interested in scheduling a virtual team building event, feel free to get in touch with Eventurous today!