Complete Guide to Team Building for Remote & Hybrid Work
Nowadays, the popularity of remote and hybrid teams are continuing to grow. Many employees hesitate when they are asked to go back to a physical office because they won’t have as much flexibility in their day to day activities.
"Millions of office employees who fled business districts in December after the Omicron variant surged continue to work at home, despite the plummeting rate of Covid-19 infections and hospitalizations."
The Wall Street Journal
As a result, remote team building is essential to stay connected with your colleagues, no matter where they are in the world. Since so many companies have listened to their employees to stay virtual, here are 7 ways on how to build a strong team culture with a remote team.
7. Video Conference Software
The video conferencing software a company choices can dictate how a company’s remote team culture is built. Team building for remote workers will be easier and more effective if the video platform aligns with the overall culture. Many remote employees have stated they feel a sense of Zoom fatigue, when using video conferencing softwares like Zoom, Skype or Google Meet.
Successful remote teams finding alternatives, like virtual workplaces, that are more in line with the company’s remote team building goals. A virtual workspace, or virtual office, is a tech product that solves the challenges facing remote, hybrid, and distributed companies. To learn more about virtual offices, check out this article on virtual workspaces.
A great example of a virtual office is Kumospace. Virtual workspaces allow companies to bring real life scenarios into remote life. In Kumospace, you’re able to run into colleagues on the way to a meeting or hang out in the common area when you’re not heads down on a project. The best part is, you can only hear people within your talking range, just like you would in real life. Remote team building is more beneficial when you have the right tools that align with your company’s culture goals.
6. Remote Team Lunches
Team building for remote workers is a lot easier than you think. Having a simple weekly team lunch allows team members to have a break and get to know their coworkers. Each week new groups of team members can virtually meet for a meal. Pro Tip: Rotate the groups on a weekly basis. It’s always great to have members in different departments meet and get to know each other outside of ‘work’.
The perfect incentive to make sure teams show up is by giving a weekly food stipend that employees can only use if they attend the team lunch. I mean, who doesn’t love free food?
5. Weekly Team Meetings
Having weekly team meetings is the perfect way to align on company goals and priorities as a whole on a consistent basis. When you manage cross-functional teams, it’s important to keep all the departments rowing in the same direction.
"Using a communicative cross-functional team is an efficient way to arrive at a solution. Everyone has to listen to each other to fully understand the problem at hand. Getting everyone seated around the same table — and ready to engage — is the quickest way to make that happen."
By having clear communication with each other, teams can thrive and succeed together.
4. Friendly Competition
Now we’re not saying to set unrealistic expectations and metrics to hit, but we are saying challenge your employees to exceed expectations by adding in a friendly competition every now and then. Some people in the company might be more competitive than you’d imagine. Providing an outlet for them to go beyond their limits will allow them to stay engaged. By adding in a competition, you’re allowing team members to get to know each other and talk about ways to achieve a common goal.
An example of a friendly competition would be to challenge your employees' participation on social media. By liking, sharing and commenting on your main social media posts, your company will be gaining more engagement and grow their overall reach. You can incentivize your employees by creating a leaderboard that allows them to see who’s participating and give a grand prize to the winner.
3. Smaller Group Activities
Finding common interests between coworkers will help build relationships and team culture within the company. Employees will get to know each other by doing activities they enjoy together. Team members will look forward to attending their day to day meetings when coworkers can be friends.
Small group activities can include book club, board game club and yoga club. And no, you don’t have to be in person to do all these activities. Even virtually, your team can thrive together while making deeper connections outside of the normal work day. At Kumospace, one of the team’s favorite activities is our bi-monthly virtual game night every second Thursday.
2. Questions of the Day
Although asynchronous communication isn’t the best when it comes to your normal work day, it can be useful to ask fun and easy team questions. This allows team members to get to know small details about one another that you normally wouldn’t ask. Participation isn’t mandatory, the activity naturally encourages participation. This team building exercise will let teammates open up at their own pace.
Need ideas? Here are 23 questions to kick start this initiative:
If one of us were to visit the place where you live or the place where you were born, what would you recommend seeing or doing?
What hobby or interest are you super passionate about?
Which country that you have not lived in would you want to move to?
As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
What's your favorite season?
What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
What's your favorite pet? As specific or general as you like. It can be a type of animal, a breed, or even your actual pet. Bonus points for pictures of your actual pet.
What's something that always triggers childhood nostalgia for you?
What are some of the weirdest food combinations you like or you've heard of?
What musical instrument do you wish you could play?
What hobby do you wish you had more time for?
What's something you're unreasonably afraid of?
What's one of your pet peeves?
What's your weekday morning pre-work routine? Coffee? Breakfast? Catching up on news?
What's your death-row last meal (main dish, sides, dessert)?
Would you be willing to be an early colonizer on Mars? Why or why not?
What's something you learned much later in life than most people?
What's your favorite way to top a burger?
Do you prefer a vacation packed with activities or a vacation about doing nothing?
What was your favorite fictional character as a child?
What's a movie or tv show that you'd actually like to see a remake, reboot, spinoff, or sequel of?
What's the most memorable (for good or bad reasons) vacation you've ever taken?
What's something you could teach a beginner class or give a lecture about?
1. FUN - Games and Bonding
Having fun will enhance company morale. Remote games have become more popular and help build a strong company culture. Here’s are 14 games you can play right now from your virtual office!
There you have it, 7 ways to build a strong culture with a remote team! Having a balance of work and fun is essential to keeping motivated employees. Message us on LinkedIn if your team has more suggestions on how to build company culture while being remote and hybrid!
Work From Anywhere
A virtual office in Kumospace lets teams thrive together by doing their best work no matter where they are geographically.
Rad has over 7 years of experience in Marketing. Currently, she is the fun Digital Marketer at Kumospace. She leads initiatives such as influencer marketing, SEO management, and social media to name a few. Outside of work, Rad enjoys traveling, working out, and spending time with her family and friends.