Team building exercises have been a major part of companies ever since some enterprising soul invented companies and another enterprising soul invented teams. A great team activity helps team members accelerate the rate with which they can build rapport and chemistry by creating an environment where participants can let their guard down and connect with each other on a different level than their daily work routine.
So rather unsurprisingly, the importance of team building activities hasn’t decreased since the ball dropped on 2023. In fact, the need to build strong, resilient teams is more important in our new remote-working, distributed team, post-COVID world than ever before. Simply put, the people need great, free virtual team building ideas! And so that is what we’re here to deliver…
Who doesn't enjoy solving a mystery? Luckily, the internet is chock-full of mythical crimes you can crack as a team. You and your team will each be assigned a character to play, you’ll receive a series of clues to investigate, and then you’ll have to work together to deduce who amongst you committed the crime…usually all in 90 minutes or less!
Now most of these virtual mysteries involve solving a murder of some sort, but don't worry…you’re not likely to see anything too graphic. All you and your team need to know is that somebody's been murdered, there are a whole lot of suspects, and it's your job to question them all and find the guilty party. Can you all work together to figure out who amongst you is hiding a secret??
Here are some murder mystery providers that you might like…
That said, a good chunk of these virtual murder mysteries cost cash money. However, we here at Runaway Games are something of a murder mystery philanthropist organization, and we actually went out and made 10 free murder mysteries that you can download and play whenever you want…so if you have 3+ players, sleuth away on us! Oh and PS - check out the teaser videos for each murder mystery - we had so much fun making them :)
It's hard to find someone who truly dislikes trivia. So incorporating it into your team-building session is a terrific plan. The best part is, you can build your own trivia game extremely easily! And of course, trivia-generating websites and apps (such as Kahoot) exist if you’re not feeling so ambitious. Kahoot will help you build your own trivia game extremely easily!
Here's how to start up an awesome trivia team-building game:
Perhaps you decide to not keep score at all, and that's okay too! Perhaps the real trivia victory is the fun you had along the way. For the purposes of team building, that's absolutely perfect.
There's a good chance most people on your team — if not everyone — has seen at least one episode of the classic TV show Whose Line Is It Anyway. The game is incredibly simple: four people play ridiculous improv games, making up hilarious scenes on the spot. Imaginary points are arbitrarily awarded for humor's sake, and somebody arbitrarily "wins" for the purpose of one more joke.
You and your team can absolutely play these improv games together, no matter how many people you have on your team! Despite being designed for in-person improv classes or showcases, most of these games will work perfectly over virtual chat.
Want a simple idea to get you started? Try out a fun improv game called Alphabet:
There are countless other improv games you can play, like Party Quirks and Superheroes, among others. Tons never make it to TV, and you can read about those on multiple sites such as here and here! So find a few online, introduce them to your team, and let imagination take over. Remember: just like on the show, the points don't matter. Only the jokes do.
Even though Bingo's popular image is a room full of old people trying their luck with the tumbler, Bingo proves popular with all ages. A few virtual rounds will make for a wonderful team-building exercise!
You can find countless Bingo cards or card generators online, such as BingoBaker or Bingo Card Creator.
Here’s a team building tip - While you can certainly play Bingo the old-fashioned way (match randomly-drawn numbers to those on your card), we like to kick things up a notch and have the Bingo spots represent something else! One of our favorites is where each Bingo card has a different life experience, and when you randomly call out an experience, the player fills in the spot if they've done that thing. Think of it as “Never Have I Ever, but the Opposite...Bingo Edition”.
Even if you don’t take our name for the game (no love lost, don’t worry), you’ll be amazed how much you can learn about your colleague in 30 minutes!
Book and movie clubs aren't just for free time anymore! You and your team can absolutely form a club as an awesome team-building exercise.
How does one launc a virtual book or movue club, you ask? Well, we're here to help!
Instant bonding, just add content!
Why not base your next team-building exercise around the joy of joint creativity?
Together, you and your team can write an entire story! First, as a team, you decide what to write about. Then, as the team leader, start the party by crafting the story's first sentence or paragraph. Then, the next team member adds a sentence or paragraph. This goes on until you tell an entire story.
You can also write a song this way! Pick a song subject to write about, then contribute the first line. Another team member writes line #2 — this keeps going until you have a complete song: 2-3 verses, a chorus, a bridge, and perhaps even an outro.
Depending on the mood of the virtual table, your story could be serious and deep, or (more likely) ridiculous and silly. Worry not about quality though: you might not pen the next Pulitzer/Grammy winner this way, but your co-writing exercise will make your team that much stronger!
Runaway Games wants to help you get your next team-building session started for free! Click here to check out our free virtual murder mysteries that will turn everyone in the office into Sherlock Holmes and Miss Marple! And if you want to take things up a notch and have a small budget, click here to check out some of our incredible live hosted activities - we’ve got everything from virtual escape rooms to the game shows you know and love!