Teamwork is an essential part of any successful business. It encourages collaboration and can help to create a positive work environment. However getting coworkers to work together can be difficult, so implementing office games to encourage teamwork is important.
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I’m defining “office games” as activities that are designed to bring teams together and get everyone on a team working together towards a common goal. Let’s explore some of the best ways to use office games to foster teamwork and boost morale in your office.
Michael Scott organized the Office Olympics, so what further proof do you need of the benefits provided when you organize fun games with your coworkers?
Hold On. Games at Work?
Office games aren’t just fun; they can also be used as powerful tools to motivate employees and strengthen team spirit. The right type of fun games for your team can actually help inspire collaboration, communication, and creativity among your staff members. It can be great for newer teams who haven’t bonded fully yet. We’ve used these many times as effective team-building activities.
These aren’t standard board games, but rather immersive experiences where a winning team is crowned. These games help with team communication skills and trust.
How Long Are These Office Games?
These are meant to be short – 10 minutes to an hour. These should be quick fun office games.
When To Play Games
Most managers are trying to get more work done, and playing games isn’t high on the priority list. I recommend organizing these around other office events. I used to make this an annual event with our department’s Christmas party.
Be sure to give out a simple award to the winning teams. Perhaps you can create a “winner’s wall” that will list out the winners and keep adding to it each year.
Holiday parties are a great time to add a little department competition. I would announce the competitions a week or two before the party and you could feel the anticipation and excitement grow during the week. It helps as a team-building activity since people are generally in a less-stressed mood anyway.
People have a tendency to wind down a bit on Fridays. Perhaps you could make it a habit of holding these after lunch every Friday.
One note though – if you make these optional, you’ll probably see a trend of fewer people participating every week. One option is to have a single team each week perform a game. The next week, another team. Each week the next team will be trying to outperform the previous teams. Whatever you do, try to build anticipation into it.
Your goal should be to get the teams excited about playing each week. It’s the excitement within each team that adds to the team bonding.
From trivia contests to scavenger hunts, there are plenty of fun office games when it comes to using work games for team building. Here are a few of my favorites…
A trivia contest can be a fun game and a great way to encourage teamwork. They involve a group of people competing against each other to answer questions on various topics.
Players are usually divided into teams and must work together to provide the correct answer. This encourages collaboration, communication, and problem-solving skills as they work together to come up with the right response.
Also, trivia games can help strengthen bonds between team members as they compete together in a friendly atmosphere. Trivia questions can also be tailored to specific knowledge or subjects that are relevant for the team, helping them learn more about each other’s strengths and weaknesses in an entertaining setting. I would always throw in coding and database questions, as well as engineering history facts.
Some example questions I’ve used:
- Who is widely considered the creator of the World Wide Web?
- What does SQL stand for?
- What year was this company founded?
Ultimately, these games create an environment where team members can practice working together in a fun and exciting way.
A scavenger hunt is another fun game that can be a lot of fun and an excellent way to bring out teamwork.
While trivia contests focus on knowledge and individual skills, scavenger hunts require multiple people to complete the task. They can be tailored to fit the size of the group by adding clues that require collaboration. For this reason, it’s a great party game and team-building exercise as well.
Scavenger hunts are also a great way to get people moving around and exploring their environment. They promote problem-solving and communication as players must work together to figure out each clue and its corresponding location. Importantly, it encourages conversation among participants as they search for objects or locations together.
In addition to being fun, scavenger hunts help foster team spirit as everyone works together towards a common goal. This type of game is particularly suitable for larger groups or for those who wish to explore an area such as the office building or a nearby area. However, you could do this as a virtual scavenger hunt, where people have to find the items at places on the web. Check out GooseChase as an example of a virtual scavenger hunt.
Puzzle challenges require participants to work together in small groups to solve a problem or complete a task and can involve puzzles, riddles, and other mind-bending activities.
These types of games provide an opportunity for co-workers to get to know each other better while having fun at the same time. By collaborating together, team members can learn how to better utilize each other’s skillsets and strengths.
They also allow for different perspectives on how problems should be solved or tasks completed. This encourages people to think outside the box and come up with creative solutions within a time limit.
Escape rooms are great puzzle challenges for a team. All team members must work together and solve various logic puzzles in order to escape the room. Escape room puzzles are available online and can be used for multiple teams.
By working together and learning from one another, teams will develop stronger bonds that will benefit them greatly in the future.
One great way to encourage collaboration and team building is by having teams work together on a project. This could be something as simple as creating a presentation or developing a strategy to solve an issue; whatever the task may be, having teams come together to brainstorm ideas and collaborate on solutions will help them learn how to communicate effectively with one another and develop their problem-solving skills.
One team building game idea might be to organize a cardboard or aluminum toy boat-building competition. Each team can start with the same materials, and on competition day you can see who stays afloat the longest with the most weight added. We used this as a party game and it was a tremendous success.
You can also challenge teams to come up with creative ways to solve problems they’re presented with, giving them an opportunity to practice their critical thinking skills. Having the teams present their final projects not only demonstrates their level of collaboration but also serves as a great learning experience for everyone involved. You could invite other managers to come in and grade each team’s presentation in order to determine a winner.
These projects are less “gamey” but they certainly encourage teams to take ownership of their projects. They also help build trust among their colleagues and it creates an atmosphere where everyone feels comfortable contributing ideas.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are The Best Strategies For Setting Up Work Games?
It’s important to consider the goals of these games before you start implementing them in the workplace. What are you trying to achieve? Are you looking for team members to learn more about each other, or to find creative solutions to common problems?
Knowing what you’re aiming for will help you decide which strategy is best for your situation. Additionally, it’s important to consider the size of your team and the type of game that would be most engaging and appropriate.
That way, everyone can get involved and benefit from the experience.
Are There Any Risks Associated With Work Games?
Team members with different levels of experience or skill may feel like they are not adequately contributing to the game. Be mindful of this as it can lead to feelings of discouragement and frustration among members. This kind of situation may actually damage team morale and productivity.
Additionally, certain activities might come off as too competitive or unprofessional in a corporate setting. Charades and Improv are fun for some people, but many dislike them. They fall into the category of getting in front of a group and speaking or acting out. It’s like public speaking for many people – they’d prefer death.
It’s important for managers and leaders to be aware of these risks prior to introducing any sort of game into the workplace.
How Can Work Games Be Used To Improve Team Morale?
They help to bring the team together and foster collaboration, while also providing a fun and engaging way to learn new skills.
With work games, teams can be encouraged to come up with creative solutions to problems and develop their communication skills in an enjoyable atmosphere. Team members can even bond over shared interests or activities, which can lead to increased productivity and job satisfaction.
By playing office games on a regular basis, teams can feel more connected and strengthen their bonds for better collaboration in the long run.
How Much Time Should Be Allocated For Work Games?
Depending on the size of your team and the type of team-building games, you might need anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour. I would definitely recommend that you timebox the event so there is a sense of urgency while participating.
It’s best to give everyone a chance to participate without making them feel like they’re being forced to play.
Consider starting with shorter activities and building up towards longer ones as the team gets used to playing together.
Are There Any Safety Considerations To Keep In Mind When Setting Up Work Games?
Depending on the type of game, you’ll need to ensure that the space is suitable and that any physical activities or objects used don’t pose a risk to any participants.
One year we had a game that required each participant to run about 50 feet, grab something off a table, and run back. One team member fell and chipped a tooth during their turn. We decided against including it the following year.
An obstacle course is another idea often considered but may be overly challenging to some team members. If your games require equipment to be used, make sure it’s in good condition and appropriate for the size and strength of the players.
Office games are a great way to encourage teamwork and build morale in the workplace. They can help people get to know each other better and foster collaboration among team members.
It’s important to ensure that the games are set up safely and thoughtfully, with appropriate time allocated for them. It’s also important to consider any risks associated with the games, such as potential injuries or uncomfortable situations.
If you’re including physical activities, be sure to consider each person’s ability to perform the tasks. You don’t want to alienate someone if their physical abilities would prevent them from participating in your party games.
All in all, work games can be a fun way to bring teams together if done properly! Have fun!