When you work in distributed teams, virtual team bonding can be a challenge. Of course, you cannot deny the numerous upsides to working remotely. The only commute you need to cover is the distance between your warm bed and your comfortable living room. Moreover, you have privacy; you are free to eat whenever you want, wear whatever makes you feel confident and cozy, and set up your work desk any way you want.
Working from home is liberating. But it can also be lonely too. Around 3% of the workforce in the U.S. are working remotely for most of their time.
It is true when they say it is important to build connections with the people you work with and create virtual bonding wherever you are. Read below to find out more.
Why Do You Need Virtual Team Bonding With Your Remote Coworkers?
1. Boosts Morale
If you are constantly pushed only to deliver work and abide by timelines, you can experience burnout and disengagement. Therefore, you need to function cohesively with your peers and engage in online meetings, group discussions, informal rant sessions, and more.
Bonding practices such as the ones mentioned before can help empower you, as well as your coworkers. You may feel valued, and all coworkers will develop mutual respect. Socializing also helps clear up any internal conflicts between members of the same team.
2. Promotes Smooth Collaboration
No team project can succeed without the efforts of every person involved. This is primarily because a number of tasks are interdependent and require coordination amongst the resources. While team collaboration is not an issue in a concrete workspace, things may become challenging when it comes to remote projects.
However, if you and your coworkers understand, you can avoid the major issue that comes with virtual team projects, which is communication lag. If you have personal and healthy bonds with your peers, you can stay connected with them and work cohesively.
Socialization allows you to explore each other’s weaknesses and strengths, enabling coworkers to complete and coordinate tasks concerning their competence. As a result, you can save time and additional effort and sit back and have some snacks instead.
3. Enhances Productivity
At times, you may experience lower productivity, especially if you do not have a clear work direction when collaborating on projects. This tends to happen when coworkers face discrepancies in communication. Therefore, forming healthy bonds with your peers gives you room to understand an organization’s culture and its goals.
In addition, with clarity and a sense of purpose, you will be motivated to help your employer’s organization reach its goal. Your resource performance is likely to increase without any kind of burnout.
Top Tips To Encourage Virtual Team Bonding Among Your Remote Coworkers
Now that you know the several benefits of forging lasting bonds with your coworkers in a remote workplace, it is time for you to gear up. Below are a handful of tips that you can use to form healthy relationships with the people you work with.
1. Perform A Check-In Daily
It is recommended that you begin each workday with a fifteen-minute meeting with your peers. But this is not going to be like any other formal meeting. Rather, this is the time for you to talk about matters that are lighthearted, positive, and not related to work.
This short session should be dedicated to discussing weekend plans or reminiscing about your favorite vacation! Remember that this is supposed to help you and your peers express who they are away from the office.
2. Set Aside Social Time
If you want to replace the after-work happy hours that remote workers miss, you can always have a cocktail session on Zoom after a long workday. You could also try something competitive and replace office bowling nights with virtual game sessions. Gather your peers for some video gaming on an Xbox or PlayStation, and have the time of your life!
If you want more virtual bonding game ideas, we made this list with a wide variety of group activities perfect for remote teams!
3. Widen Your Net
Working from home allows you to expand your network beyond the usual in-person office setup. Remote working paves the way for interdepartmental relationships, which can easily be achieved through video meetings or calls. If you are easily intimidated by talking to people in person, then a more doable choice would be to connect with them virtually.
Fun Activities To Do With Your Coworkers Online
Games can be an easy and fun way for you to blend personal and professional and keep your spirits high. Here are some cool games to try with your remote team:
1. Two Truths And A Lie
While this is a classic party game, Two Truths And A Lie can also be played virtually. It involves team members telling others three facts about themselves, which includes a false one. Consequently, the others have to guess fiction from the truth. This is an excellent way to get to know your coworkers more personally.
2. Video Charades
An image generator can help you create a list of topics you can distribute, which will be handed out to each member. Then, your coworkers can act out the image in turns while the rest try to guess. This activity can help you create a lighthearted environment for yourself and your peers.
How Far Do You Need To Go?
Even though employees are not present in the workplace, they need to be properly integrated into the organization. And that’s why it is essential to implement virtual bonding activities to ensure high performance and teamwork over time. This includes learning about the culture and structure of a place, as well as forging bonds with the people who work there.
But the question arises, what do you need to do to achieve your goal of forming healthy relationships with coworkers in a virtual work environment? You will find a checklist underneath that can make your life easier.
- Coming up with a plan of action.
- Figuring out who will participate in the activities and exercises, such as upper management, associates, etc.
- Choosing activities that will best suit you and your peers.
- Picking a day to consistently carry out planned exercises.
- Take feedback from your peers on how to improve the forming of strong bonds further online.
Make your way through this checklist, and you will stand a better chance of accomplishing your goal of building connections with your coworkers. Good luck!