Team building is a valuable tool to strengthen any organisation. Though it’s usually difficult to implement in a remote setup due to various reasons – lack of time, travel, etc., team building activities help build camaraderie and stronger relationships between team members and improve communication between team members.
A remote team is lacking in the in-person communication part. You have to find ways to work around it. When remote teams face an issue, they tend to discuss it in emails instead of talking to the person sitting next to them. This makes the situation worse as things tend to get lost in translation.
So, how do you build better relationships within your team? An effective way to build a team is through team-building activities that usually start with an icebreaker. Knowing the individuals in your office might help both you and your colleagues. While getting personal in the workplace might be difficult at times, the appropriate mindset and some tried-and-true icebreaker questions can get the conversation started correctly.
Why you should ask icebreaker questions
In today’s world of increasingly diverse workplaces, introductions and small talk are sometimes the best icebreakers when it comes to meeting new people and starting conversations. Though they may not be appropriate for every office environment, icebreaker questions can be a great way to break the ice and ease the awkwardness of small talk.
Icebreaker questions are also a great way to start conversations, get to know your colleagues, and create a comfortable office environment.
Having icebreaker questions on hand to share with new employees not only makes them feel welcome but also helps you get to know them better. The questions you ask can also help new remote team members get to know their colleagues, which improves working relationships and teamwork. Icebreaker questions can be used for more than just new hires. They can be used for existing employees as well. The questions you ask and the answers you receive can help you learn more about your colleagues and help you create better working relationships.
Icebreaker questions can help new employees develop relationships with their co-workers.
What are icebreaker questions?
Typically, icebreaker questions are used to get someone to talk about themselves. These questions can range from simple to complex, depending on the group you are with and your level of comfort with the other people. Icebreaker questions can be used to spark conversations and to learn more about other people.
You can use icebreaker questions to get to know coworkers who you don’t work closely with.
They can also help new employees or interns get to know people in the office. Icebreaker questions can be used anywhere in the workplace and at the start of virtual meetings too.
Typically, they are used in casual conversations and for new employee orientations.
However, you can use them in more formal situations as well, such as introductions at team meetings or conferences.
How do you ask icebreaker questions?
How you respond to and ask a question is just as important as the question itself. When asking icebreaker questions, it’s important to listen to the other person’s answers and ask questions of your own. It’s also important to be open and honest.
Icebreaker questions are open-ended questions used to encourage conversation and rapport, according to the employee business training company Dale Carnegie Training. For example, an icebreaker question might be, "Can you tell me something about yourself that might help me get to know you better?"
Fun questions to ask remote employees
Personal Icebreaker Questions
1. What is the most interesting place you’ve ever visited?
2. What’s the most interesting book you’ve ever read?
3. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
4. How did you get started in your current field?
5. If you could go back in time, what year would you go to and why?
6. Which era in history would you most like to live in?
7. What’s the most interesting song you’ve ever heard?
8. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
9. What are your hobbies other than work?
10. What’s your favourite joke?
11. If you had one day left to live, what would you do?
12. If you could have lunch with anyone in the world, who would it be?
13. What’s one interesting fact about yourself that not many people know?
14. If you could be anything in the world, what would you be?
15. What’s the best movie you’ve seen recently?
Icebreaker Questions for Work
1. At a company field day, what’s the event that you think you’re most likely to win?
2. If you had to pick, what’s your least favourite office supply?
3. What are your two worst qualities?
4. Would you rather be liked or feared at work?
5. If you had to pick, what’s your biggest pet peeve?
6. What’s your biggest work accomplishment to date?
7. What’s your top tip for working better with your boss?
8. What’s your take on office politics?
9. What’s the worst trend/fad you’ve seen in the workplace?
10. What’s the best part about where you work out of?
11. What’s your secret work vice?
12. What’s the one activity that gets your co-workers talking?
13. What’s the best perk/perk package your company offers?
14. What’s the most annoying thing someone can do in the workplace?
15. What’s the one thing you’d change about your job?
Would You Rather Icebreaker Questions
1. Would you rather watch a movie or read a book?
2. Would you rather eat sweet and sour candy or sour candy?
3. Would you rather be deaf or blind?
4. Would you rather eat a burger or a hot dog?
5. Would you rather be very skinny or fat?
6. Would you rather be a boy or a girl?
7. Would you rather be a famous singer or a famous dancer?
8. Would you rather have a dog or a cat?
9. Would you rather have curly hair or straight hair?
10. Would you rather be tall or short?
11. Would you rather be a doctor or a lawyer?
12. Would you rather have lots of money or lots of friends?
13. Would you rather be smart or good-looking?
14. Would you rather have glasses or contacts?
15. Would you rather be a teacher or a student?
The list could go on and on, and you could frame themed questions on travel, hobbies, history, pop culture, etc. An excellent place to start would be asking about your employees' interests and then framing questions accordingly.
Team building in remote settings is important
Team building in remote settings is essential to cultivate trust, encourage teamwork, improve communication, and increase efficiency.
Do you ever feel like you’re talking to a wall when video conferencing? You’re not alone. Millions of employees have to work with remote workers. And whether you’re collaborating with colleagues in another location or working from home yourself, it can be a challenge. Building camaraderie and a productive connection with remote employees requires a little finesse. And it requires asking questions and listening. The answers to these questions will give you a sense of your employee’s background and preferences. And asking follow-up questions about questions that are particularly interesting to them will help the conversation move naturally.
These questions are a fun way to get to know your remote employees. But if you feel like you’re getting nowhere, try a different approach. Ask team members to go around the room and share an interesting fact about their personal life. Encourage them to share a fact or two about themselves that not many people know. Remote workers normally spend 60% or more of their time in work-related communication. So, it’s easy to feel like remote employees are just doing their jobs and not connecting with their coworkers. And that’s a real shame.
Employees who lack social connections are more likely to burn out, suffer from stress, and quit their jobs. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be this way. By getting to know your remote employees, you can help them form connections that make them feel valued and connected. And they’ll work harder to exceed your expectations. So, reach out and get to know your remote employees. You might be surprised by what you learn.
Mesh.ai drives continuous feedback loops, supports productive 1:1s, and encourages employees to grow and thrive. Get in touch today to discover how.