- September 14, 2021
You may have part of your employees on remote work, or maybe even abroad. You slowly feel the corporate spirit dwindling and you feel a team building activity would just be what your staff needed?
The obvious question is how to bring together your core or even entire team for a common activity? Did you ever think virtual teambuilding could be an option? True, it does sound discouraging at first: overloaded servers, technical problems and the thought of Mandy from marketing going live in her bathtub, or Andy from accounting joining the call wearing nothing beneath the beltline. As daunting as it may seem at first – just give it a try! After all, the most adaptable survive this ever changing world.
We have collected a few ideas of virtual team building and events for your workforce.
- Cooking together online
- Draw event with an artist
- Wine tasting
- Music events with karaoke and dance battles
- Theme parties
If you are not creative enough to come up with your own, then there are also many event organizers, like EventyOn, who jumped on the virtual train and offer various activities for organizations.
How can virtual team building strengthen your corporate culture in your virtual organization?
Let’s be frank, the virtual team building cannot replace face-to-face interaction. But it can help to align your team to common goals, new realities and plans for the future. It gives them an opportunity to check-in on each other, see what’s new in their lives. But is the online format suitable for all companies and will there be an effect from such events? We spoke on this topic with Oleg Rakov, Training & development manager at EventyOn (a space for creative events and master classes in Moscow and St. Petersburg. This company organizes unforgettable birthdays, family holidays and corporate events. In 2020, the company held more than 500 online events of various formats.)
1. Is there a positive effect from online team building activities?
There is certainly a positive effect for companies.
First, employees get to know each other, which is obvious. They learn new facts about each other, and all this affects the relationship between them. And the success of the company depends on the communication of these people. Therefore, team-building events are certainly an important tool for achieving corporate goals. This very much transcends just the fun and entertaining part of such events. Now this is the main component of a healthy atmosphere in the company. Online events should not be neglected. It’s important to maintain team spirit, communication and motivation of employees.
2. What problems/difficulties can happened?
It is crucial to choose a format for the team-building event that will suit everyone. By “everyone” I mean every employee in the company. Why is this important? We all know that people don’t pay too much attention if everything went well (as we have naturally the expectation that all should be fine). Hence we are more willing to write reviews about bad restaurants, bad delivery, etc. We immediately pay attention to the bad factors and things we did not enjoy. And of course, the fact that after any corporate party, people complain, if their expectations were not met, is a natural aspect of course. But our task here is, as the organizers of the event, to decrease this probability.
At EventyOn, we held more than 500 virtual team-building events last year, and with this amount of experience, we understand what customers want, what employees want and know how prepare for all contingencies — from preparing an event plan to delivering products. It all depends on the process organization, team coherence and skills. For every online event, whether it’s a CulinaryOn cooking class, a PaintOn art party, a wine tasting or a quiz, each event is planned through certain steps:
1. Date and time. The first stage is coordinating the date and time of the event, taking into account the geographical data.
2. Choosing the format of the event and the menu. Coordinating the menu, if it is a culinary master class, choosing a picture, if it is an art party. A topic important for each event, both for the quiz and for the culinary master class, is choosing drinks from the bar.
3. Organization of delivery. Next is the process of collecting and delivering products. For all culinary master classes, each product is collected in a vacuum and thermal packages. The quality of each product must be perfect and properly preserved until the moment of opening. For art parties, brushes, canvases, an easel, and paints are collected. All the necessary elements of master classes for an online event in EventyOn are collected with special care. All items are packed in branded boxes CulinaryOn, PaintOn, EventyOn, depending on the format, and sent to the address by couriers on the day of the event.
4. Connection. Next, the team creates a link for Online connection and sends it to participants. Usually we use Zoom, but there are cases when the client chooses another platform for Online meetings. The entire process of the master class is recorded and then we provide it to the client. Not only platforms are taken into account, but also the language. We can conduct our master classes in English if the customer is an international company.
5. The last stage of the event preparation is the preparation of a web page, which includes: a link for connecting, menu, ingredients, cooking/drawing/tasting stages, master classes moderators.
6. Throughout the event, the EventyOn team is present, answers questions and helps guests.
7. At the end of the event, we can provide a short video of the party.
3. Are online events suitable for all companies?
There is an inverse dependence with the size of the company. The larger the company, the better actually to spend time together online, which is due to the fact that such teams have a wider geographical spread. For example, EventyOn can help companies to organize an online event for 800 people which are located across Russia, anywhere from Kaliningrad to Vladivostok. Also online events do not require too much actions from employees. All they need is to meet the courier at their door and connect to the call. And if we talk about offline events, it is actually difficult from a logistics point of view and expensive enough to bring everyone together. Also, COVID-19 has greatly affected the budget of certain companies. Therefore, offline or online is only a tool for achieving a goal, and it is the goal that determines the toolkit. No matter how it will happen, based on this we can conclude that online will suit everyone in general, but for large companies it will definitely suit better (small companies don’t prefer online events as they have a bit different organizational structure and communication culture).
4. Can online events replace offline ones?
Yes and no. “Yes” — because the purpose of the teambuilding event is communication. Online events perfectly satisfy this goal. But there are some activities that will definitely be less interesting if held online such as online dances, online karaoke, and similar formats. At EventyOn, we organize events that are available both online and offline. Items for cooking classes, art, and wine master classes can be easily delivered to people’s home. Quiz parties (for both children and adults) can also be held at home. The essence does not change, the interest is not lost, the feeling of the master class remains, only the location changes. Of course, it is always necessary to proceed from all the initial tasks that the event organizer sets for himself, and these are budgets, audience, geography, security, and epidemiological situation. And taking into account all this data, you can choose your format: an offline or online event.