Engagement and productivity are two sides of the same coin because they work in tandem to help you achieve your goals. Even though we tend to focus more on productivity, workplace engagement has an equally vital role to play as it ensures that your employees are happy and motivated to perform at their best. .
So how can you boost engagement in the workplace? Virtual coffee breaks are an effective way to do this. This article will explore creative ideas for engaging your people.
What is a virtual coffee break?
A virtual coffee break is an online activity that allows employees to discuss non-work related topics with each other. This intentional allocation of time allows colleagues to connect on a more personal level, which in turn boosts morale and helps build a sense of community within your organization.
Do you remember those random daily chats with your colleagues around the water cooler or the coffee machine? Weren’t they a great way to re-energize your day and boost engagement? Well, a virtual coffee break is basically the same thing, but it takes place online, with an emphasis on camaraderie and not necessarily caffeine.
With that in mind, you shouldn’t ignore the importance of those water cooler conversations or coffee break activities just because your office is virtual. With a little creativity, pretty much anything can be turned into an engaging activity, and here’s why it’s worth it:
- It helps create a sense of community. Having a virtual coffee break provides a great forum to bond as a team.
- Virtual coffee breaks can set the tone for your daily videoconference meetings.
- Virtual coffee breaks can improve communication between colleagues.
- These breaks create knowledge sharing opportunities that help boost collaboration and productivity.
- Virtual coffee breaks can help alleviate feelings of isolation.
- Virtual coffee breaks create many cross-departmental networking opportunities.
- Having a virtual coffee break can help new employees feel more connected and welcomed into your organization.
If you’re convinced of the importance of virtual coffee breaks in your remote workplace but aren’t sure where to start, here are some creative ideas to help get your program started.
1. Play wordle
Have you ever jumped on the Wordle bandwagon? Otherwise, don’t worry; this might just be the perfect activity for your next virtual coffee break.
Wordle is a fun and sometimes frustrating web-based word puzzle game that has been making the rounds on the internet. Each day, the game presents a five-letter mystery word that you must guess in six attempts.
It’s the perfect game to bring fun to people who need to scratch that competitive itch on their breaks. All you have to do is visit their website to start playing. Once you’ve exhausted all of your attempts, the site makes it easy to share your results on social media or even in your Slack water cooler channel to engage your colleagues.
If you’re feeling particularly competitive, you can add incentives to increase engagement, like bragging rights or Amazon gift cards. Here are some tips and tricks to help you improve your score on Wordle so you have a better chance of winning.
2. Play a virtual pub quiz
As well as being great fun, playing a virtual pub quiz is also a great way to build knowledge and camaraderie within your team.
Virtual pub quizzes are fun and challenging, sometimes ensuring employees engage in the activity. If you want to make things even more interesting for your virtual coffee break, try adding incentives.
So what do you need to get started? You need a quizmaster who will prepare the questions in advance and moderate the game. You can organize the questions into sections like geography, history, pop culture, sports, to name a few- one, for a well-balanced game. However, if you have trouble finding questions, you can find inspiration here.
As this is happening virtually, you will have to make do with a video conferencing platform like Zoom or Microsoft Teams instead of a pub/bar. You can also use a dedicated platform like the remote pub quiz app to automate the process. This app has a built-in dashboard to track progress and a list of quizzes to choose from.
3. Play Emoji Charades
This is a fun take on the classic favorite, Charades, where a player must play a given word, phrase, or movie title for their team to guess. However, as the name suggests, you play emoji charades using only emojis.
Before starting this game, you will need an internal communication tool like Slack or Microsoft Teams; just make sure it has enough emojis. Then choose a specific number of emojis corresponding to the number of players. Next, assign numbers to each emoji.
Ask each participant to choose a number and text them the corresponding emoji to start the game. You can give each player a minute or two to play their emojis using only hand gestures and facial expressions, without speaking !
The first person to guess the correct emoji gets the point. If no one guesses correctly in time, the actor loses a point. You can also deduct a point each time the actor speaks. The participant who accumulates the most points at the end wins the game.
4. Start a virtual book club
If you and your team enjoy reading, try starting a virtual book club. The idea is to read the same book with your colleagues in your free time and discuss it during your virtual coffee breaks.
The first thing you’ll need to start your virtual book club is a communication platform like Slack or a dedicated book club app like Library that you can use to discuss the book. You can then choose your first book and start reading.
Give everyone plenty of time to complete the book, or you can agree to have a virtual meeting after completing each chapter.
However, it doesn’t have to be a book club; you can apply the same concept to any other hobby that a few people on your team might enjoy. For example, you can create a virtual cooking club to discuss the best recipes or a virtual gaming club to talk about your favorite games.
Spice up your meetings with these virtual coffee break ideas
While the remote work environment leaves little to no room for in-person interactions, it still provides you with plenty of opportunities to leverage technology to drive engagement and team building in your workplace. work.
Virtual coffee breaks are a way to spend quality time with colleagues while learning more about them. Not only that, but these activities also provide a few minutes of fun in the middle of a busy day, which are needed to recharge and boost productivity.
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