5 Inspiring Virtual Outdoor Team Building Activities and Ideas
It is no secret that team building and the development of a cohesive, well-motivated, and enthusiastic staff have always been key to a successful business. With the prevalence of remote teams and flexible work patterns increasing, the importance of virtual team building cannot be overstated.
There is now an abundance of virtual team-building activities and games that can be carried out over any distance from the comfort of your own home. Virtual escape rooms, game shows, and quizzes, as well as online murder mysteries, can all be used to great effect to enthuse your remote teams and enhance your virtual team building.
However, remote team building does not need to be confined to a computer screen and a microphone. Outdoor team building can be equally effective in fostering a sense of team bonding and camaraderie and can offer additional benefits to team members.
Here we take a look at five virtual outdoor team building activities that your remote team members can try.
1. Virtual Bingo
The obvious beauty of heading outdoors is that there is more to see! Your remote team members can utilize this by creating a virtual bingo card. Have your team members get together to develop a list of items, landmarks, or moments in time that might typically be seen on a wander outside.
This activity can establish a sense of healthy competition with this team-building activity. Set a deadline by which the card needs to be completed. Encourage team members to photograph all that they see to legitimize their finds.
While arranging a physical prize for winning the competition might be challenging, brainstorm some possible rewards for your winning team member.
As with all the outdoor team-building activities included on this list, time away from the screen and out in the open air can be hugely beneficial for your team members to refresh their mind and body. It can foster a sense of creativity in both the development of the bingo card and the photos that will follow.
And for virtual teams that cover great distances in the real world, the photos can offer an effective stimulus for conversation when comparing home areas.
2. Virtual Scavenger Hunt
Like virtual bingo, a virtual scavenger hunt can establish a sense of competition through this activity where a keen eye is key!
For this team-building game, one team member will find an outdoor space and hide various objects around the area. They will then provide a list of these items for the remaining team members to find as they take the team on a virtual journey around their outdoor space.
This team-building activity can be used as a collaborative one, whereby the team works together to find the objects, or a competition for the team members.
A core strength of this virtual team-building game is the elaboration of communication skills between team members. The individual who instigates the scavenger hunt can place sentimental value on the hidden items to provide a catalyst for conversation with the other team members.
If each member takes their turn as host, a sense of insight can be garnered into each team member’s personality, enhancing the closeness of the whole team.
3. Virtual Picnic
Providing the weather holds true, a lovely outdoor team-building event that can be arranged is a virtual picnic with all team members. Whereas the previous two activities share a sense of competition, a virtual picnic can offer a pleasant reprieve from the remote office work expected of them and provides a team leader the chance to show their appreciation for the work being done.
The nature of remote work can result in virtual team members experiencing a sense of isolation and loneliness if there isn’t a conscious effort made to counteract this. A virtual team-building event such as a picnic can alleviate these feelings. Team members can show off their favorite dishes, providing a topic of conversation.
This type of more laid-back outdoor team-building event can be earmarked as a regular monthly event, giving team members something to look forward to as the month progresses.
4. Virtual Hike
Like the virtual picnic, a virtual hike can offer team members the chance to engage in conversation without the pressure of the working environment. However, a hike’s natural benefit over a picnic is that it will also allow virtual team members to still engage in physical activity. This should always be encouraged when it comes to remote work.
The experience can be adapted depending on the nature of your remote team. A step count or distance could be set as a target for team members to hit. While this activity does not lend itself quite as readily to social interaction, it can offer the opportunity for team members to keep each other motivated if they share the time on a hike.
As targets are hit, a sense of shared accomplishment can be heralded, which can be taken back into the work environment. If done regularly, these virtual hikes should help keep the team member refreshed and motivated to complete their daily work tasks.
5. Daily/Weekly Photo Share
A final outdoor team building activity that can be utilized to assist with your virtual team building is sweet and simple.
Have your team members take turns providing prompts for photographs to be taken outside, such as an image that inspires them or one that uses specific colors. By giving your remote team the same prompt, you allow them to share in a sense of collaboration. It can generate a sense of creative freedom among the team members that is perhaps lacking with some of the other team-building activities on this list.
While this is another of those virtual team-building ideas that can be used for friendly competition, it may be more beneficial to use it for a time of reflection. As with a number of the team-building activities mentioned, successful implementation could see increased stimulus for communication among your team members.
Why Virtual Outdoor Team Building is Needed
The need for effective team building remains an essential cornerstone for successful businesses. While virtual team building activities at the screen certainly play their part in fostering strong team cohesion, the benefits of outdoor team building activities cannot be overlooked.
These benefits include:
- Physical well being – team members who can implement consistent physical activity throughout their day will find it much easier to maintain focus and energy, leading to increased performance and production
- A sense of team bonding – many of the outdoor team activities listed will help to encourage team members to communicate with one another, establishing friendships and trust that can be taken forward into the work environment
- A reduction of isolation – the nature of virtual teams can lead team members to feel isolated and lonely. These outdoor team building activities are essential in reassuring team members that they are not alone
- A sense of creativity and accomplishment – certain outdoor team building activities are excellent outlets for team members to explore their creativity and can build a company culture of setting and accomplishing targets.
Virtual Team Building with Making Teams
At Making Teams, we have embraced the need for remote teams and virtual team-building skills as today’s working environment continues to evolve. With over fifteen years of experience and a team of highly-specialized facilitators, we aim to provide tailor-made team-building events and generate visible improvement in your team dynamics.
Drop us a message, and let’s get to work on building your perfect virtual event!