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20 things to do with your colleagues


By Nadine Descheneaux, Espresso

Going out for the traditional happy hour isn't the only way to encourage interaction among colleagues. Try teambuilding activities or make easy changes to office routines to strengthen ties between team members.


Volunteer


Joining forces for a good cause increases team spirit and creates bonds that endure outside of work. Many foundations and organizations are looking for volunteers. Get in touch with them. It's a win-win for everyone!


Cook


Taking a cooking class calls on everyone to roll up their sleeves and work together! Discover new dishes and flavours as well as your colleagues' hidden talents. So, bring out those pots and pans.


Run


If you work with a lot of enthusiastic joggers, start an office running club. Motivate each other to keep moving forward. Rather than focusing on results, emphasize the shared experience. Club members can encourage each other to continue training.


Create collective artwork


Art brings people together and awakens their creativity! It's perfect for companies that rely on innovative employees. Participate in a group painting workshop or just place a large canvas (or piece of paper) along with a box of supplies (pencils, paint, paper, glue, etc.) in a common area. Everyone can contribute to the collective work.


Be eco-friendly


Think “environment” and look for an ecological activity that you and your co-workers could do to make your neighbourhood or office a little greener. Take part in a street or park cleanup, for example. Be proactive together!


Play with Legos


Some companies that specialize in teambuilding activities offer Lego workshops to bring colleagues together. Why not organize a similar activity yourself? Split into teams and start building. Try issuing a challenge (like building a particular kind of structure) and encourage each team to go the extra mile and create something spectacular.


Picnic


As soon as the weather turns nice, go outside for a picnic with your co-workers. The fresh air will do everyone good, not to mention the change of scenery! Have a large tablecloth on hand at work for an improvised picnic on fair-weather days. Eating outdoors is always a welcome alternative to a staff room meal.


Promote self-care


Organize a “well-being” lunch break each month. Offer an activity or treat that encourages relaxation and joy, such as a self-massage workshop, professional facials, chair massages, or workplace yoga.


Plant a tree


Use teamwork to develop your green thumb. If creating a green space on company property is not possible, do a little interior decorating with plants. You could also make a small greenhouse for seedlings. Then, once summer arrives, everyone can take a plant home.


Take on an escape room


Escape games are an extremely popular way to encourage teamwork. No preparation is necessary. Just show up at the entertainment facility and solve riddles as quickly as possible to escape a locked room. You might find your colleagues have some surprising skills.


Learn to surf


Catch some waves together! Take a surfing class at an indoor facility. You're sure to have some fun and discover that the art of surfing requires more than just being in shape. Wouldn't it be fun to schedule this activity when it's snowing outside?


Play music


Music always brings people together. It can also reinforce team spirit and cohesion. Organize a percussion or djembe workshop at the office. You'll have fun while improving your communication and collaboration skills.


Seek out an adrenaline rush


Are you looking for exciting, spectacular activities that get the adrenaline pumping? Well, look no further. The possibilities are endless: try bungee jumping, race car driving, helicopter tours, parachuting, rafting, virtual reality, and more. You'll return to work a stronger team than ever!


Save the animals


Gather your animal-loving colleagues and volunteer at an animal shelter. You'll create new bonds through your passion for animal welfare. Did you know that some zoos offer behind-the-scenes tours? Check it out for an extra-special experience.


Dance


Slip into those rain boots and get ready for a gumboot workshop. Moving to the rhythm as a group will strengthen your team spirit. Re-energize the troops and lighten the mood at the same time.


Discover the world


Discover the world one dish or restaurant at a time. Break out of your routine and go out for a group lunch. Don't settle for the neighbourhood diner; explore a little further afield. Try more exotic destinations that offer dishes from around the world. Take an intriguing and delicious culinary journey!


Rediscover bowling


Have a blast rediscovering bowling! Just relax, have fun, and laugh—no matter how ugly the shoes are! Celebrate the best gutterballs. Applaud the strikes and spares! Dance to the catchy music! Create a team cheer! Forget the score and focus on the fun!


Start the day with a breakfast social


Begin a new tradition: organize team breakfasts on a seasonal, monthly, or even weekly basis. Choose from several options: have everyone bring a dish to share, simply have everyone bring their own breakfast, or hire a caterer. Just don’t forget the coffee, tea, and hot chocolate (with whipped cream!). Take time to enjoy an unhurried chat with your colleagues.


Sail the waves


Whether it’s a mini-cruise, dragon boat, canoe, or raft, getting together on the water can improve interaction in the office. Trying something new as a team can help colleagues see their everyday co-workers in a new light.


Play!


Games are serious business. If space allows, install a foosball table in a common area to encourage your colleagues to have a little fun during breaks rather than staying in their offices. Provide easy access to board games and inspire some interactive recreation. Playing games reveals hidden strengths and creates interpersonal connections beyond work. Everybody wins!

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