Team Building Ideas for The Office

Fun Team Building Ideas

Team building. We all know that it’s a useful way to learn more about each other and develop our skills. But we also all know that, when done wrong, team building can be an eye-roll inducing test of endurance that sees you wishing the day away and learning pretty much nothing about yourself or others.

If you’ve been tasked with planning team building activities for the workplace, there’s no doubt that you will be acutely aware of this fact. And the reason you’re here is you’re stuck for ideas or inspiration, and you’re keen to make sure your efforts hit the mark.

To help and inspire you, we’ve put together a huge list of ideas for work. The first section of this article will focus on team building activities that can be carried out in-house. These are generally shorter, require less resources and can be applied to a whole range of scenarios. In the second part of the article, we’ll look at some bigger, meatier team building activities that can be carried out as part of an away day, conference or meeting.

Across all these team building ideas, we’ll take care to relate them to the types of skills they will focus on and the benefits employees will be able to carry on through the workplace.
Ready? Let’s get stuck in!

Team Building Ideas for The Office

Before we dive into our top team building ideas for the office, let’s look at where and how you can apply them. If you have any training days coming up, team building activities can be a great way of loosening everyone up before leading into a topic. These are sometimes called icebreakers. For established teams, these activities can be used periodically for a change of pace, or to prompt groups to think about different types of skills.

Alternatively, quick team building activities can be used in team huddles to kickstart the day.

One of the common misconceptions about team building is they must take up hours and hours of time. They don’t! Little and often can be effective too for getting employees to think outside the box, work together effectively, and communicate better.

In Office Team Building Activities

Playing Card Jigsaw

Skills Focus: Communication skills, negotiation skills, empathy
Number of People: 6+
Time Required: 15-20 minutes
Materials: A deck of cards, pair of scissors, envelopes

Instructions:

  1. Begin by splitting the group into teams of two or more
  2. Pick six playing cards for each person in the activity. So, if you have 6 people, you’ll need 36 playing cards.
  3. Cut each card into four even pieces. You can do this by cutting the cards in an X shape.
  4. Mix all the card pieces together and equally divide them between the appropriate number of envelopes (e.g. If you have 3 teams, split the cards between 3 envelopes.)
  5. Give each team an envelope and set a timer for 3 minutes.
  6. In that time, teams need to work to sort their pieces and find out what they are missing to make up a complete card. They must also develop a bargaining strategy that they will use to negotiate with other teams in order to obtain their required pieces.
  7. When the 3 minutes are up, teams must start to barter with each other to acquire their missing pieces. Give them 8-10 minutes to do this.
  8. After the given time, each team must declare how many complete cards they have. The team with the most is the winner

Following this activity, the facilitator may choose to bring the team together and ask a few questions. You could ask teams how they think they worked together, which bartering techniques were the most effective, and what they would do differently next time. You might also ask teams to share what kind of skills they used throughout the course of the activity to be successful.

2 Truths, 1 Lie

Skills Focus: Communication skills
Number of people: 5+
Time Required: 10-20 minutes
Materials: None

Instructions:

  1. Gather the team round in a circle and ensure everyone is facing one another.
  2. Ask each person in the group to write down 2 true things about themselves, and one lie.
  3. When they have done this, ask each person to share their facts, and their lie, in a random order.
  4. The aim of the game is for the rest of the team to identify the lie through asking questions.

This is a particularly good activity for groups of people that don’t know each other very well, as it allows everyone to have a bit of fun and learn interesting things about each other. The game also helps participants refine their questioning and active listening skills.

Marshmallow Tower

Skills focus: Collaboration, Problem Solving
Number of people: 3+
Time required: 10-15 minutes
Materials: 20 sticks of spaghetti (uncooked), roll of masking tape, string, 1 marshmallow

Instructions:

1. Hand the team the materials and instruct them to build the tallest tower possible in 10 minutes. Stipulate the tower must stand on its own, and only the materials given to them may be used.
This is a fun activity that encourages teams to work together to solve a problem. This focuses on communication skills, innovation and collaboration.

The Human Knot

Skills focus: Communication, problem solving, adaptability, collaboration
Number of people: 5+
Time required: 5-10 minutes
Materials: Nothing

Instructions:

1. Get your team to stand in a circle, facing each other. Each person must reach out and hold hands with two people that aren’t standing next to them.
2. When they have done this, they will all be tangled up. The aim of the game is to get them to untangle and form a circle – but they can’t let go of anyone’s hand!

This game is a great way to loosen up teams and get them communicating effectively with one another. It’s also a great way to prompt innovative thinking and promote creativity.

Team Building Day Ideas

Getting out and about outside the confines of the office can be a fantastic way to energise your team and open their minds. There are many team building activities you can do at either an alternative venue or even outdoors. Read on for some ideas and inspiration to fuel your planning:

The Hungry Games

Skills focus: Teamwork, communication, problem solving
Number of people: Up to 168
Requirements: Flat grassed open space, bows, foam tipped arrows, facemasks, camp equipment

Inspired by the iconic Hunger Games series (but nowhere near as brutal), the Hungry Games sees teams go head to head as districts into the world of arena survival! Teams members will hone their weapon wielding skills through axe throwing, spear making and combat archery as they compete to win points and additional equipment.
At the climax of the event, teams will work together to create a weatherproof camp complete with roaring fire and warming drinks!

Barista Experience

Skills focus: Active listening, innovation, creativity, communication
Number of people: 4-30
Requirements: Space for tables and chairs for each team, coffee making equipment

If coffee fuels the office, then a Barista Experience is a sure-fire way to get everyone on board with team building.

In this activity, teams will be given a brief history of the espresso along with key information on how to make the perfect cup. Following this, teams of 5 will work together to develop a wonderful range of coffee-based beverages before trying their hand at serving them up in a top of the range barista bar.

Escape the Office

Skills focus: Problem solving, communication, innovation, collaboration
Number of people: max. 150
Requirements: Enough space for a table and chairs for each team

Escape rooms are fantastic team building activities. And this unique, interactive experience sees teams battling it out to solve a series of puzzles in order to be the first to escape the office.
Throughout the course of the activity, teams will be provided with a selection of typical desk items, along with locked filing cabinet jam packed with a selection of random items. But they’re not as random as they seem! In order to escape, teams will have to utilise all their problem-solving prowess and communicate with each other effectively. But don’t forget, the clock is ticking, and there’s only 60 minutes to escape!

Organising Team Building for Your Workplace

From escape rooms to activity focused away days, getting out of the office for team building activities is a sure-fire way to shake things up, push employees out of their comfort zones and have some fun!

At KDM Events, we can help with all sorts of team building. What’s more, we can set up most activities at a venue of your choosing and bring all the necessary equipment along with us. Our expert Event Crew will also facilitate your chosen event, ensuring each participant gets as much as possible out of the day. To find out more contact us today.


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