{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Favorite hacks for building team spirit in a remote company? We are DRAGGING. I have tried some meetings for hanging out, but I feel like it might just take up people's time and not sure it really does much. ", "post_id": "620c20e453cf6b002d7d8ad9", "reply_count": 51, "vote_count": 25, "bowl_id": "55375ce690f5eebe1d2a0f88", "bowl_name": "Tech", "feed_type": "crowd" }
null

Favorite hacks for building team spirit in a remote company? We are DRAGGING. I have tried some meetings for hanging out, but I feel like it might just take up people's time and not sure it really does much.

likeupliftingfunny
Posting as :
works at
You are currently posting as works at
Highlighted IconHIGHLIGHTED

Our workplace team has done some really great stuff to help with this. I have never met any of my direct colleagues face to face (started with the company a year ago) and I still feel close and connected to them and the rest of the company:
- Care packages with company merch and treats (like food and drinks)
- Quarterly all-hands with great transparency on what's going on with the company
- Activities like remote games evenings and remote cooking classes (optional obviously)
- Slack channels for things like 'coffee-talk' and 'fur-kids' etc
- Weekly 1:1s (with structure) with leadership - important that these are not cancelled
- DNS (do not schedule) time during an afternoon one day of the week for catch-up/focus time
- Half-day Friday's for a month (not every month but usually one in summer and one in winter)
I think importantly though none of this is going to work if everyone feels burnt out with workload so I feel it's important that the balance there is right - nobody is going to take any time to build team connections and spirit if all they cna think about during that time is 'oh my god how am I going to catch-up with the work I'm not doing right now'

like

You may want to experiment with some combination of multiple things.

The morale of individuals:
1:1 meetings between Managers and 'direct reports' (harder to define if you have more of a flat or less hierarchical team structure) can be beneficial for helping to make sure an individual team member has the time and space to discuss personal goals, challenges, any kind of 'housekeeping' issues around logistics, etc. Doing those meetings weekly or bi-weekly can often help to make sure their morale isn't being weighed down by purely personal considerations.

Set a quarterly goals planning meeting with individuals, connect this somehow to any performance framework that might be in use at your workplace.

The morale of the team:
A monthly 'all hands' social video call, with our without an agenda can sometimes be a good way to lift spirits or blow off steam. Depending on the nature of your team, you can leave it totally unstructured, or if people prefer more of an agenda you can consider things like the first 30 min is a specific topic that someone speaks to, or every person/'team' gives a 10 min update on what they are actively working on and then leave some portion of time for free form discussion. Sometimes just getting together and seeing everyone on video can do a lot, especially in larger teams where you may not get day-to-day interaction with other people you like now that you are remote.

Another thing to try is to set some 'deep dive' meetings as a planning mechanism and leave buffer time for drifting the conversation into a less formal group chat. An example might be, if you are set to build some new feature around something like setting a date range on a search - everyone shows up with ideas and examples, then read the room, and if people seem relaxed and would like to just chat about random stuff, allow the meeting to drift "off-topic" and don't worry about it not being 'productive' or 'wasting time' for anyone. If on the other hand, people seem 'all business', roll with that as well and acknowledge the progress on the topic and wrap it up without the chit chat.

People at on-site workplaces waste a ton of time just drifting around the space and chatting and we don't get in a bind about that because it's "normalized". People can also waste a lot of time when they are frustrated about things at work, even when we aren't in meetings. Improving morale deserves and requires time, it's not optional. Figure out the types of activities that fit your culture, be agile, experiment, and hopefully, it will steadily improve team spirit.

like
Recent IconRecent

Get folks together in person a couple times a year. Doesn’t even have to be the whole team each time. If a few are working on a project together, schedule a 1 or 2 day meeting. Find a local brewery and head there after work. Online won’t build chemistry in my experience.

likefunny

@Salad it happens. My company used to pay for team lunch or dinner once a month. Which then slipped to once a quarter. Eventually, even before we went full remote, they stopped entirely. Pair that with 2% raises this year, and I can't imagine they would pay to bring us together in person. 😂

likefunny

Some of the things we have done for our team to show appreciate and build team spirit:

-we have a special channel on slack for daily questions. Like “share a photo of your weekend?” “What’s your favorite type of ice cream?”
-Monthly Snack Time - a 30 minute optional hangout on a no-meetings Wednesday. It’s just a fun space to bring a snack, take a break, and catch up
-Surprise day off - People appreciate this very much when you tell them “you have Friday off” at the beginning of the week!
-surprise packages with some company merch and favorite snacks


We have moved away from doing long zoom events because people don’t want to be on another meeting.

likehelpfulfunny

SURPRISE! DAY! OFF!!! 🙌🏾👏🏾🤸🏾‍♂️ SURPRISE! DAY! OFF!!!

likefunny

You could try a Recharge Day.

I have seen it done different ways.

The latest version that I attended was a 4 hour virtual event. It was optional to attend. And only 2 hours were in zoom. The other 2 hours was for us to go do something … take a walk, read a book, write a letter, do something that would be relaxing.

The 2 hours of zoom time were games. We played some mini games in a large group of 40 people. Then we went into breakout rooms and played drawing games.

My favorite mini game was with slack emoticons. My second favorite was a drawing game.

likesmart

There are games aka trivia that you can incorporate into online meetings. People get on video and go to a website (you can populate the questions) and have a little contest. My manager last year did this with trivia from each one of us...you had to guess whom the situation/thing/ etc was. We enjoyed that... and it was fun.

like

Try some more structured team building activities where people are a bit more forced to interact? So we usually have a different team member host each time and play a range of games (host chooses) including jackpot games or you can find online simulators for werewolf (aka mafia) or trivia.

Also, make sure that it’s during regularly scheduled work hours. We do every other Friday towards the end of the day. If I have to join during my own time, my morale drops significantly.

like

Also lots of consultants have a minimum hour requirement on their contract. So that hour meeting on company time is an hour I can't use for vacation without compensating with overtime. If it's not in person, social events aren't worth my time.

Share wins. Also in your 1 on 1’s find out what their goals are so they can alight their daily duties with their path to said goals.

like

Why not just leave them alone? Making them do useless things is going to lower team morale even more. Don’t understand why managers keep wanting to force this. Give us time away from our coworkers and they’ll work better together. Forcing them to spend more time together will lower team spirit more

likefunny

Pay for everyone to flight out and be together. Something simple like a Tuesday through Thursday. Do it twice a year. Half of it can be actual work, but no more than half. The other part should be social. I am full remote and my company keeps delaying getting us together. No one knows anything about each other. No one wants to go the extra mile for their coworker. We don’t have deep relationships. If you are ok with a fine to good team, don’t meet up in person. If you want a great team, I have seen that building personal connections is key. And I haven’t seen a successful way to do that over a zoom call…

likefunny

I think if my team had to meet we would work worse because I’d be more annoyed of them

funny

We use "tacos" in slack. Everyone has 5 tacos they can give out for appreciation to a teammate in a day. And then at the end of the month we award a gift card (for coffee) to who got the most tacos and who gave the most tacos. It really helped our large team to grow closer as they were looking for opportunities to say nice things about teammates and always had an opportunity to participate without the push for "mandatory" things, which mandatory things are usually a non-starter for team building.

like

Give Jackbox games a spin. $15-$20 but can really boost morale and allow you to further understand your team and their humor

likefunny

Send out a gift card that each team member has to share with one another in pairs made up. Rotate persons in pairs and do it every two months .The gift card can be as small as 20$ but the game makes it up for rest. Each member will have to think of the person they gift . Do this for couple of months .

like

I worked in a remote team for a year. Some activities you could do are watch movies/series together, have people vote maybe and watch them through an extension in their browser that synchronises the show in all devices. Another is games together, like among us which seems stupid but its fun as the team constantly changes or drawing games. It really helped us build a relationship across seniority and nations. Other games might be remote pictionary. Anyway you get the gist, activities where people engage with it together in a fun and light way, where they have opportunities to bond and joke with each other.

likefunny

Top golf! Always a favorite team outing for us

likefunny

Good call!

If people are "dragging" I can pretty much guarantee it isn't because they need you to organize events that will build "team spirit". Find out what the actual morale issues are and address them. They are almost certainly more substantive than not hanging out with coworkers enough.

like

My team has a weekly social meeting. Anyone who is free and wants to connect with people more can come and there’s no pressure for those who are busy to join. It’s been great for bonding.

like

No, there’s no pressure to join. Our manager only shows up maybe 10% of the time so it’s really low pressure.

Try planning for a hackathon

like

Our team does daily fun activities of guess a movie by emojis, sports trivia, things like that via slack, just to take 15 mins out of the day and have some fun. It’s small, but it does help!

funny

Additional Posts

Hi Friends,

Please suggest.

What will be better option Deloitte USI or Accenture?
YOE - 11 years
Skill - SAP ISU
Compensation almost similar, location Kolkata for Accenture, WFH/Kolkata (in near future) for Deloitte USI.

like

I'm optimistic that the impeachment process would start post-July recess if the GOP wants to keep the speakership.

like

Why do leadership teams wait so long to announce that someone is leaving (often times until that person’s last week)? Is there a company/industry wide policy on this?

like

Going on a 2 week vacation with best friend from the firm (opposite sex) in a month. Been getting mixed feedback from folks about it. Women, would you go on a trip with someone you weren't into?

like

What can help me (2 YOE at B4) get an interview at MBB besides a referral? Certain skills, certain qualifications, GMAT score, or something else?

like

Is there anyone joining EY India this week ?

like

How long have you been at your current company?

For anyone who has recently switched firms, how did you know it was time to move on?

Any advice or considerations welcome.

like

Starting to doubt my ability to get into any of the 4 M7 schools I'm targeting. I've got Anderson as my safety, but should I consider an early decision application at Columbia?

like

Has anyone used RocketLawyer or a similar service to create lease agreements? Pros/cons/other alternatives?

like

Moms who sent their kids to daycare - when did you feel your kid started going to daycare regularly ? I am started my child this summer (10 MO) and also have a part time sitter until august to cover for sick days ( no family near by ) but would like to know how long to plan for the sitter. I am recently divorced single mother so don’t want to continue having sitter as it is expensive on top of daycare at the same time I can’t work while taking care of a sick child .

like

I am NYC native, never felt the need or urge to drive. On a project in the middle of nowhere...I just have to drive. How long will it take me? In my late 20s.

like

How can I tell the type of hardwood floor? I’ve used bona but then got scared it wasn’t polyurethane. Then tried something else and wasn’t sure if it was waxed. Just trying to clean my floor

like

Any European here?

like

I have my FET in about 2 weeks . Was asked to sign a consent form which lists the risks with children born through IVF especially increased risk of birth defects and childhood cancer. It makes me nervius... this is my first IVF after multiple failed IUIs and 1 past MC at 15Wks. I am 36 and we have been trying for 2.5 yrs now. What do ya'll think about risks to children born thru iVF? Whats the probability of things going wrong... e.g. developmental defects etc.

like

Guys, are plsql developers growing back in demand nowadays.. Lots of opportunities and companies are willing to pay high for oracle plsql developers. Is this true and what are your thoughts..?

like

Hey folks,

I joined KGS recently. If your salary account is in HDFC, by what time, salary will be credited? I was supposed to get salary today but till no news.☹

like

The EMS staff in our city are true heroes. Going into people's homes with minimal PPE to help those who can't make it to hospital

like

Anyone here ever take a huge loss? Like 1+ year of savings? How did you come back?

like

Question on a case interview: how bad is it if you made one poor assumption in the beginning and acknowledged that assumption was the root of the inaccurate result at the end of the case?

like

I wonder is the damage caused by years and years and years of not enough sleep is irreversible. Just occurred to me... Like the irreversibility of not taking care of your skin, liver damage, etc.

like

New to Fishbowl?

Download the Fishbowl app to
unlock all discussions on Fishbowl.
Download Fishbowl to see what others are saying
That was just a preview…
Sign Up to see all discussions
  • Discover what it’s like to work at companies from real professionals
  • Get candid advice from people in your field in a safe space
  • Chat and network with other professionals in your field
Sign up in seconds to unlock all discussions on Fishbowl.

Already a user?
Login here

Share

Embed this post

Copy and paste embed code on your site

Preview

Download the Fishbowl app

For account settings, visit Fishbowl on Desktop Browser or

General

Legal