Fun Activities for the Office
Author: Michael Scaletti
There is a ton going on in the world, and it can all be pretty overwhelming. Going to work can sometimes start to feel like a chore when put on top of everything else. But it doesn't have to! If you are starting to notice listlessness, boredom, or disaffection in the workplace, it might be time to bring the office together with fun team-building exercises! I promise, trust falls will not be involved.
1. Plan a Scavenger Hunt
As the weather gets nicer, this is a great one to do around the city. You don't even have to organize it yourself, as there are companies like The Go Game and Stray Boots which will do the work for you! Fresh air, exploring the city, and taking on a fun challenge will do wonders to leave your team feeling refreshed. And don't forget to take lots of pics!
You can have a general cook-off with your office, where individuals or teams each get together to prepare a single dish, or you can make it more targetted by giving everyone a category (such as pizza) and having them make their best version of that recipe. Want to make it more challenging? Choose a specific ingredient that everyone's recipe MUST include. Cap'n Crunch Pizza anyone?
3. Board Game Nights
This is a great one to turn into a regular team-building event. You can schedule a regular board game night and have team members rotate choosing their favorite board games to play. boardgamegeek.com is a great place to recommend team members go for ideas.
Have a large team? You can even make it a board game tournament where team members compete over the course of an extended period.
4. Trivia Night
Trivia nights in a bar or restaurant are fantastic, but with many bars and restaurants still shut down, it may be a while yet before you can attend one. That doesn't mean you can't still have a trivia night! Check out www.triviaquestionsnow.com to get some ideas for trivia questions you could use to put your own night together, then grab some drinks, form into teams, and get playing!
5. Karaoke Night
Just like with Trivia Night, Karaoke Night isn't relegated to only happening in bars. A quick google search can get you to a place where you can rent a karaoke machine locally, and from there you're well on your way to getting your team members to break out of their shells!
6. Go-Kart Racing
Get your adrenaline pumping, your competitive juices flowing, and your team engaged with a fun and active event like Go-Kart Racing! There are great race tracks all over the country. If you're in the Bay Area like us, I'm partial to K1 Racing in South San Francisco.
7. Escape Rooms
Escape Rooms provide your team with a chance to bond, connect, and exercise their problem-solving abilities together. You can visit an established Escape Room in your area, or you ca use a service like Outback Team Building and Training to turn your office into an escape room!
8. Laser Tag Arenas
90s Nostalgia is all the rage right now, and nothing says 90s to me like a trip to your local laser tag arena. It's another team-building trip that will get the adrenaline pumping and get your team up and out of their chairs and moving around.
Similar to Laser Tag, but outdoors, faster paced, and potentially a bit more painful. Still, it's an absolute blast, and a great way for any team to spend an active day.
At The Job Shop we're BIG fans of being involved and giving back to your community. We try to set aside regular days where our team volunteers at various non-profits and organizations around the city. This is a truly great way to bring your team together to make a difference in your community.
Want a great way to make sure your team knows how to work in sync? Put them in a situation where not doing so means they capsize! Seriously though, kayaking and canoeing is a great way to promote teamwork while enjoying the outdoors on a nice summer day.
12. Painting Class
If something calmer and more creative might appeal to your team, consider booking a painting class! Paint Nite has classes throughout the country in major cities, and it's a fantastic way to bring your team together for a fun night that promotes their creativity.
13. Cooking Class
Similar to painting classes, cooking classes are a fantastic way to bring your team closer together, celebrate achievements, and let off some steam. A little bit of effort will generally find organizations that will do group cooking classes no matter where you are located.
14. Sports Game
It's been a pretty fantastic decade for Bay Area sports. The Giants won three championships, the Warriors won 3 championships, and the Niners made it to the Super Bowl twice. It's looking more and more like sports will be restarting in the fall, so why not celebrate the excellence of your local sports teams by taking your office out to a game? Hotdogs and sunshine are an added bonus.
15. Work on a Puzzle
Puzzles are great. They work your mind and promote problem-solving abilities. So it follows that doing one with your team will help with group problem-solving. Feeling ambitious? Set a time limit for the completion of the puzzle, then, when time is up or the puzzle is complete, discuss what strategies worked and what didn't.
16. Start a Book Club
It really is everyone's responsibility to educate themselves as much as possible. The best way to promote self-education is to read! Organize a book club at your work, and then rotate choosing what book to read. Schedule a meeting of the club for once a month to discuss the book you read. The discussion is key to retaining the information that you have gained!
17. Tackle a Ropes Course
This is a bit more ambitious, but it’s a great day trip or retreat activity to get your team outdoors and still working together. Ropes courses require teamwork in so many ways, whether you’re encouraging a teammate to overcome an especially challenging part or trying to get through a maze as a group. Just make sure everyone on your team is on board with this before moving forward (for example, ensuring no one’s afraid of heights or has mobility issues)—if they’re hesitant you may have more success trying something else out.
18. Form an Office Sports Team
There are a lot of amateur intramural leagues in cities around the country, and forming a team to participate in them can be a fantastic way to build teamwork. It doesn't have to be a physically demanding sport either. Consider a pool league, bocce league, or cornhole league.
19. Form a Film Club
This is another one that can be great as an ongoing event. Rotate picking movies from among team members, then screen that movie in a comfortable environment. Having a discussion about the film afterword is a great way to promote analytical thinking and communication. Don't forget the snacks!
20. Schedule Massage
According to the American Psychological Association’s 2017 survey Stress in America, 61% of Americans say work is a significant source of stress. Often times, that stress rears its ugly head in physical ways like tight shoulders and backs. Offer relief on National Have Fun at Work Day with on-site chair massages—set up a conference room with chairs, dim the lights, put on some soothing music, and bring in a few massage therapists.