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Top 10 Ideas for Virtual Team Happy Hours

The shift to remote work means we need to rethink our approach to team building. In this article, you'll find the 10 best virtual happy hour ideas as well as resources and tips to plan them.

As teams around the world are working remotely, connecting with your peers and work friends has changed. Sometimes this is for the better, but sometimes you’re on your 9th Zoom call of the day and just can’t wait to shut your camera off. Regardless, the importance of the team happy hour has remained the same. It’s a chance for everyone to close the productivity tabs on Chrome, have a drink, and socialize.

We've compiled a list of 10 of the best team building activities that can be done remotely (free of charge). So, grab your friends, grab a drink, and have some fun!  

1. Virtual Games

An oldie but a goodie, the virtual game craze has blown up and become a favorite for everyone’s virtual happy hours! Jackbox is a Branch main-stay with games such as Quiplash and Fibbage, but some others like Psych and House Party have made their case for being a fan favorite. House Party is great as it has its own native video and game platform!

2. Online Board Games

Not to be confused with Virtual Games, Online Board Games are a great way to take your skills from the game board to the chat board. Test your skills in these free versions of your favorite board games like Codenames, Settlers of Catan, or Scrabble. You can also visit a site like Tabletopia which has tons of the games you grew up loving and can now beat your coworkers.

3. Virtual Scavenger Hunt

Pick a Hunt Master and have them make a list of things you need to find around your house or apartment! At Branch, we did a fun one that featured hunts like “Find your best 90s outfit” and “Find the weirdest food." It was completely subjective and the Hunt Master made judging each hunt a fun game. You can also do a more traditional scavenger hunt like the ones found here!

4. Drinking Games

While it may be hard to play a game of beer pong through a computer screen, there are plenty of games that can easily be played virtually. Flip Cup, Thumper, and Thunderstruck are all fan favorites which translate well to the virtual space, but some newer apps like Jackbox and Picolo have great drinking game options too!

5. Book Club

Grab a book and a glass of wine and settle in for some heated debate over whether Edward was actually Bella’s true love. A book club is a great way to bring the team together as its low stakes and can be fun given the right kind of book! Setting a weekly or monthly book club can help the entire team find a way to escape into another world. Need inspiration for reading material? Check out the Branch recommended reading list.
Learn about how we can support your remote team with ergonomic workstations by getting in touch.

6. Halloween Costume Party

Make it ghostly anytime of year with a Halloween-themed Zoom party. Grab your costume, some fake blood, and the rest of last year’s candy and prepare to scare your coworkers! This can be a great theme to spice things up (regardless of what month it is) and you can even have on-theme drink recipes and a costume contest

7. Show and Tell

Remember elementary school when you’d bring something from home to show all your classmates? Now it’s time to bring your classmates (coworkers) into your home and show them something you’re proud of. Whether it’s your 19th century grandfather clock, your dog, or just a tour of your apartment, get creative and share something from your home that you’re passionate about with your team!

8. Murder Mystery

Step outside your comfort zone and turn your team into a detective squad with a Murder Mystery party. There are tons of different sites that offer guided options and adventures you can go on, like this awesome Ancient Egyptian Murder Mystery game. Get your thinking caps (and detective hats) ready and solve some mysteries with your colleagues!

9. Movie Night

Grab your popcorn and a comfy blanket and get ready to watch one of these blockbusters with your coworkers! Live-streaming is a great way to have the entire team chime in with their thoughts, hopes, and fears for every character throughout the entire flick!

10. Trivia

Last but not least is a fan favorite! Trivia is a Happy Hour mainstay and can set the bar for who rules the games leaderboard at your company. Try a Trivia site like TriviaHub or QuizUp, or make one of your own! At Branch, we created a trivia based on our company history, furniture design, and product SKUs. So try an out-of-the box solution, or write your own!

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