Team building games can serve as a refreshing break from daily work and help reduce work pressure. For some ideas on games to play at work, read on.
In the hectic work schedule we are caught in, fun games to play at work serve as a refreshing break. They help break the monotony and let the employees enjoy some time off. Fun games at work also serve as team building activities that motivate the employees to give their best. It’s often seen that fun activities are of great help in boosting employee productivity.
Employees need a break sometimes, they need to relax, once in a while. Without the ‘play’ component at work, employees get all stressed, they lose the spirit to work and become bored.
Games at work! They can bring that spirit back, they can bust that boredom, they can build team spirit and they can rejuvenate the employees – to work harder, work better. Working in a team is about working with a we attitude and forgetting the I. It is about working together towards the achievement of company goals. It’s about working in cohesion, taking everyone along. Team building games at work promote this spirit among employees and also instill in them the values they need to work in a team, work as one. Here we give you some office games for a fun day at work. Plan a day of all-play-no-work and feel the difference.
15 Fun Games to Play at Work
Scenario one – The team has recently completed a project, you know the team members have worked really hard to finish it before the deadline, you realize they need a break and that they deserve one. It’s time you plan some games at work. Scenario two – There’s a festive occasion coming up. Christmas is around the corner, or it’s a few days to go before the office closes for Thanksgiving. Holiday season is fast approaching? It’s time you plan a fun day at work. This way the employees leave for their vacation on a festive note, with the festive fever in them, already! Pick games that suit the occasion at your workplace. Here you go.
No, it’s not going to be a typical introduction session where employees tell each other their names! They work together, they know each other. So have an introduction game with a twist! Have each employee introduce him/herself with a famous figure that best represents their personality. For example, someone who lives in his own world of dreams, and is pretty optimistic about everything, can call himself the SpongeBob. Or someone who is of the intelligent type or the I-know-who-I-am type can say she is the Lisa Simpson of office. The more creative each participant gets, the more interesting the game gets. It’s fun knowing each other newly, this way.
Strive to Survive
This one’s an interesting game to play at work. You need to divide the group into teams. Then, each team is given a scenario and the team members decide a plan of action together. Give each team a scenario, which will require the team members to arrive on a common consensus and take a decision. For example, give them a list of items and ask them to prioritize the items based on which of them are most needed for one’s survival. You may ask the team to list out 10 such items that strike their minds and judge the teams on what items they come up with. You can put up a scenario like a natural disaster or an attack and ask them to decide who will be preferred to survive in case only a fixed number of people can remain safe while others sacrifice their lives. Ask the team members to play different characters and have them decide who is preferred to survive the disaster.
Yet another office game this is. Ask the members of each team to decide among themselves animal sounds to associate with certain actions. For example, a bark indicates bending down, a quack indicates running and so on. List a series of such actions and ask two members from each team to be blindfolded to perform the actions. Now the other team members guide the blindfolded member to do the given actions. And they instruct him by making animal sounds. Now, each team has its own associations between actions and animal sounds. It gets tough when the blindfolded members begin to hear different animal sounds from their as well as other team members. Their skill is to identify correctly which sounds their team members are making. The skill of the team is in thinking of animal sounds that are less likely to be chosen by other teams. This one’s a communication game.
How about quizzing the employees about their workplace? Include questions about the organization, the projects they have worked on or the work they are currently doing, You can include questions about the team members themselves. Or include office trivia like who-sits-where kind of questions or how-many kind of questions in your quiz. The answers to these questions will reflect how well the employees know each other and the organization.
No, it’s not about spelling the word ‘charades’. Rather, it’s charades with a difference where you don’t enact a word as a whole, you enact it letter by letter. Ask a member from each team to spell a word by means of his/her body language and ask the other teams to guess the word being spelled through ‘body English’. This game is about making logical associations. The slight difference from regular charades is that, in this game, each letter in the spelling is conveyed through actions and the teams guess the word letter by letter. And you can’t draw in air to indicate which letter you are referring to. And you can’t convey the shape of that letter using your fingers or hands. The game gets interesting as the team starts guessing one letter at a time and sometimes guesses the entire word even before all the letters are enacted.
How does my Cube Look?
It’s a decoration game where each participant has to decorate his cubicle. Give them stationery and decoration supplies – colored paper, streamers, balloons, glow signs, sticky notes and color pens. Allot some time for the decoration and appoint judges to announce the winner(s). The best-decorated cubicle wins. If there is less scope to decorate each cubicle, you can divide the office space into sections and participants into teams. Have each team work towards making their section look nice.
Guess the Pic
For this game, have the participants sit facing a whiteboard. Each of them takes turns to come up and draw something on the board that the others need to guess. Instead of giving them the choice, you can have names and things written on pieces of paper, collected in a bowl. The person who comes to draw picks one piece, reads what’s written on it and depicts the same on the board. You can’t spell the word, you have to make its pictorial representation.
Who Wrote This?
Even while working in the same place or even the same team, and spending 8-9 hours together, we are hardly familiar with each other’s handwriting. We are so used to working on computers that there are hardly any instances of writing in pen on paper. Why not do this for a change and see if we can guess each other’s writings?
Distribute stick notes and pens to participants and ask them to write something. Now, mix the stick notes and stick them randomly on different desks. Each participant has to guess the writing on the note stuck on his desk. Participants can play cleverly by giving subtle hints through the content written. Of course, they are not allowed to enter their names or something symbolic to make it easier for the others to guess. But something indirect can be given as a clue to those guessing.
True or False
Divide the group into two teams. Have members of one team seated on their places and members of the other go around asking questions to those seated. Have lists of questions prepared in advance and give one list to each member of the team asking questions. Now this team’s members move around with a list and ask questions to all members of the opposite team. The one who brings the maximum ‘trues’ in minimum time is the winner. Questions should be of the true or false type only. For example, ‘you have traveled by air’ or you have run out of the house’ or ‘you have been caught drink driving’. Answers to questions like these can be of just two forms – a true or a false.
Pass the Baton
You can treat this game as something similar to pass-the-parcel, where an object is passed to each participant with music playing in the background. At any instant, the music is stopped. The person who had the ‘parcel’ when the music stopped is given a penalty – any fun activity. A slight variant to this game is that of passing the baton. Unlike pass the parcel, the order in which the baton is passed is not fixed. A participant can pass the baton to whoever he wishes to pass it to, and then decide a penalty too. It’s fun because there is more spontaneity in this game as nothing is decided in advance.
Wait A Minute
Plan all sorts of one-minute activities and have the participants carry them out. Blowing balloons, filling bottles, building glass towers, eating cookies… have any activity that’s engaging, harmless and one which can be completed in a minute. Have the participants take turns in carrying out the activities. Give prizes to those completing the tasks in the allotted time.
You Know Me
Pair employees who don’t know each other very well, or pair those who talk a lot with those who talk less. Give each pair fifteen minutes to talk to each other and discuss each other’s likes and dislikes. Conduct a quiz for each pair where one is asked questions about the other. The pair which gives the maximum number of correct answers is the winner. The skill is to know the most about one another in the fifteen-minute timespan.
Been to a LAN party? Know about multiplayer video games? Well, it’s a great idea to have these games to play at work. All you need is a network of computers. Offices have a LAN setup or machines connected through wi-fi. The same network can be used for LAN games like Counter-Strike, America’s Army, StarCraft and many more. Make sure you keep the network administrator in the loop and get the arrangements done beforehand. In this category of games, you can take advantage of an already set up network, and tell me who doesn’t enjoy playing video games?
What better use of the Internet for entertainment than browser games! Plan single or multiplayer browser games in office. You can choose from single-player games like Aether, ThatGameCompany’s Flow or Google Earth’s Monster Milktruck, among others. Or pick multiplayer games like Castle of Heroes, Club Penguin or Quake Live. Get the browser versions as required and plugins (if any) installed on all the machines before you begin with browser games at work.
Word and Number Games
This category of games includes crosswords, word grids, unscramble, sudoku, math and word riddles and scrabble. You can devise new games or choose from the ones already known. In case of crosswords and word grids, you can make your own games or download them from the Internet. Take prints of these games and distribute handouts to all the participants. The ones to finish first and solve the puzzles correctly win prizes.
These were some exciting games you can play at work, when bored, or to celebrate certain occasions. Be it a festival, a holiday or the successful completion of a project. And who said you need to wait for an occasion to have fun? Know the pulse of the employees. Are their spirits low? Do they lack the zeal they once had? Are they bored? Plan some fun games at work then. The intent is to give the employees the break they need and the fun time they deserve.