Virtual Meetings + Events: Taking your Teambuilding Online

Teambuildings are more important now than ever before as we are constantly being challenged with an ever-changing social, political, and environmental landscape. Read more about the benefits and logistics of taking your teambuildings online from Imprint Operations and Entertainment Producer, Joe Reynolds.

WATCH THE PRESENTATION ON VIRTUAL TEAMBUILDINGS HERE

5 Benefits of Taking your Teambuilding Online

  1. Team engagement in a virtual setting.
  2. Budget-friendly.
  3. Larger reach for companies that have offices throughout the country or globe. 
  4. A nice break from a long day of webinars.
  5. Multiple community give-back opportunities.

Teambuilding activities have been around for as long as we can remember. They are something we have always been engaged in throughout our lives, whether it be a classic ice breaker on the first day of school or summer camp, a cash cab competition, or a supermarket sweep that ends with a giant, live cooking challenge at a concert venue. (Okay, so maybe we haven’t all done that – but if you’ve engaged the Imprint team for your teambuilding event, chances are, you have.) Teambuilding activities help us learn how to better communicate, work with others towards a common goal, give back to our communities, and allow us to give in to the rewarding and collaborative feeling that comes along with being a part of a larger team and purpose.

Teambuilding activities go beyond getting your team together for an afternoon of fun challenges or community givebacks. It pushes your participants out of their comfort zones, making them stretch their capabilities, challenging their understanding of the “norm” and allowing them to bond with their colleagues in these shared experiences.

All these elements are more important now than ever before as we are constantly being challenged with an ever-changing social, political, and environmental landscape. It’s common that your clients and employees are feeling isolated during this time and taking your teambuilding virtual is a wonderful solution to that problem. These activities allow your team to still congregate in a “shared space” while maintaining safe practices for all involved. Whether it is through a virtual cooking class, a fun game night, a scavenger hunt around your house, or an art or music class in your participants’ living rooms. There are countless ways to engage people in this new virtual landscape – it has simply forced us to challenge the way we have done things in the past. Which, if you ask us, makes it an exciting time for teambuilding.

5 tips for virtual teambuildings

  1. Keep it short and sweet. We recommend nothing longer than 60-90 minutes max. 
  2. Content is King. Keep the content moving and keep it engaging.
  3. Utilize multi-media opportunities whenever they are available.  Pictures, videos, memes, sounds, etc. will help keep your audience’s attention.
  4. Hire a professional Emcee. Someone who is already skilled in keeping people’s attention will give you a huge leg up in keeping your participants engaged.
  5. Rehearse. Rehearsing with your staff, tech, and emcee is a benefit that we do not necessarily get with an in-person activity.

What makes virtual teambuilding different?

While virtual teambuilding activities share a lot of the same qualities that in-person activities do, there are a few key differences that we must remember in order to have a successful teambuilding. The biggest and most obvious difference is that your audience is in the comfort of their own home or secluded to their own office. Either way, they are not physically with each other, so it is much easier for them to become disengaged throughout the activity. How do we fix this?

As you have heard many times and will continue to hear, content is king. With your audience not physically together, it becomes even more vital that you have engaging content that is formatted in a digitally digestible way. This means gone are the days of slides full of data, verbiage, and graphs. Welcome to the digital era where we quite literally need to bring all the bells and whistles in order to keep the audience engaged. Make sure to incorporate videos, music, and imagery throughout your activity in order to grab and keep your audience’s attention. 

Another big difference in the digital world is timing. An average in-person teambuilding activity runs two hours. In a virtual setting, we recommend cutting that by half. This is yet again due to the simple fact that your audience is participating through a screen. After an hour, it is going to becoming increasingly likely that people begin tuning you out. One hour will give you the time you need to engage your guests, get them interacting with each other, and run a few challenges.  If your client would like a longer or more extensive teambuilding, think about spreading it over a few days. We have concepts that would work great that function over multiple days!

The last difference worth mentioning is team size. While in a normal setting it is very typical to have teams of 8-10 people, that size is just too large in this digital world.  Again, it is going to be more difficult to keep people engaged in this landscape, so having a smaller team will give everyone a chance to participate and be active throughout. Of course, there are activities and options to utilize larger groups, but if possible, a smaller group will lend to more engagement and stronger activity. 

Activity vs Challenge vs Community Giveback

Do you and your client want a teambuilding activity, challenge, or community giveback? This is a hugely important question to ask and truly understand at the beginning of the planning process. A good understanding of each will allow a more simple and efficient planning process.

Activity – A teambuilding activity can range from a group paint night, skeeball tournament, trivia game, or cooking class. All digitally, of course. There can be some level of competition here, but with an activity, your whole group will be together throughout. There will be no breaking off into smaller groups during an activity.

Challenge – A teambuilding challenge is more involved than an activity. With a challenge, we will take your group, break them into smaller groups, and have some sort of competition component. The group will work together within their smaller teams in order to accomplish a task, complete a challenge, or play a game. All the teams will be competing against each other throughout the challenge and we will crown a winning team at the end of it all.

Community Giveback – A community giveback teambuilding can incorporate either of the above styles. This has become a vital piece of corporate teambuildings over the years and moving to a digital platform only opens up our opportunities for the community giveback teambuilding.

Related Resources:
Adding a Human Touch in a Digital World
Best Practices for Conducting a Virtual Meeting
Taking your Fundraisers Online 

Filed under: Colorado, Florida, Las Vegas, Meetings, Meetings and Events, Multi-day Conference, Nevada, Production, Teambuilding, Virtual Meeting