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34 Team Building Activities for Work in 2024

We’ve all been there. 

That dreaded moment when we are invited to play a team building game. 😩

Why dreaded? 

Well, because more often than not, such exercises feel forced and awkward (even if the organizer is super enthusiastic). 

Fortunately, there’s a right way to engage in team building activities that will boost employee engagement and forge an unstoppable crew. 

This involves ditching the ‘between-the-legs balloon passes’ and rethinking established methods.🎈

Don’t worry, we’ve done all the rethinking for you.

In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about team building, and we’ll take a look at 34 excellent team building idea

Let’s play. 🎲

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34 Effective Team Building Exercises

In this section, there are five icebreaker games for new teams in which members are just getting to know each other. 

Once your team is ready to jump out of their comfort zone, we’ve provided step-by-step directions for 24 team-building exercises that are exciting, insightful, and fun. 

Lastly, there are five thrilling virtual team building exercises that will make your remote team feel like the distance doesn’t even exist!

This list contains both outdoor and indoor team building activities that will boost employee engagement.

While some of these team building games may work best for a smaller team, most of these ideas are suitable for large groups and small groups.

About Group Size

Every game below includes a ‘group size.’ 

This does not refer to the total number of people participating in a team building session. 

If you have a large group, you can break up that group into smaller ones. For example, if you have 20 people, you can break up this larger group into 5 smaller groups.

All these smaller groups can participate in a team building game simultaneously. 

That’s how all corporate training programs are organized!

5 Icebreaker Games

Icebreakers are short games that help people get to know each other in an informal setting. 

They build that initial rapport that’s essential to set the stage for a more involved team session.

Icebreakers are essential for both in-house and distributed teams.

1. Two Truths and a Lie

Time: 15–30 minutes

Group size: 4–6 

Objective: Build affinity

In this game, team members get to act as human lie detectors!

Start off by letting each person tell two truths and one fabricated statement about themselves in a random sequence.

Then ask other team members to figure out which are the truths and what’s the lie. The speaker can then reveal which fact is indeed false.

 2. What’s My Name

Time: 15–20 minutes

Group size: <20

Objective: Build rapport

Get your team to sit in a circle and take turns saying their names. 

Next, throw a tennis ball at one person. They must toss the ball to another teammate while saying his or her name. 🎾

To ramp up the challenge, create a rule that members can’t throw the ball to the same person twice in a row.

 3. Building a Storyline 

Time: 30 minutes

Group size: Varies

Objective: Listening, collaboration, teamwork

For this icebreaker team building activity, arrange the participants in a circle. 

One team member starts narrating a story but stops with an incomplete sentence such as, “John was excited. On his first day as a professional artist, he wanted to …” The next person finishes the sentence and adds another incomplete sentence. 

For example, “Marshall experienced a spark of creativity and decided to …” This continues until the last member in the circle is reached, and an entirely coherent story has been formed. 

This experience ensures that the entire group listens to one another and remains engaged in the activity, leading to better collaboration and improved listening skills. 

You’ll quickly discover that listening is crucial to business growth!

For more challenge and extra creative thinking, throw in random words that people must include in the story.

Bonus: Best Buddy Movies for Teamwork

 4. Form the Order

Time: 20 minutes

Group size: <20

Objective: Communication, collaboration

Instruct members to line themselves up based on specific criteria such as age, height, birthday, or shoe size. 

The challenge? 

All teamwork and communication needed to organize themselves must be conducted through non-verbal communication. 

As people move around the room to complete the task, you will see the emergence of natural leaders and innovative communication means.

 5. Show and Tell

Time: 30–60 minutes

Group size: 10–15

Objective: Build trust

This icebreaker works fantastically for remote workers.

Ask every team member to share something they love with the rest of the team.

 It could be a hobby, an award, a pet, or something completely unexpected.

Give each team member one minute to show and talk about their special something and then allow others to ask questions.

Remember, the objective here is to build trust by sharing personal information.

24 Team Building Activities

Here are 24 team building games:

6. Life’s Best Moments

Time: 30–45 minutes

Group size: 15–20

Objective: Build rapport, trust

This team building activity requires participants to move out of their comfort zones. 

  1. Instruct your team to spend a few minutes contemplating the best moments of their lives. 
  2. Then ask them to decide which 30 seconds of their life they would relive again if they had the chance. 
  3. Now, ask each team member to share their memory out loud. 

If you are a senior team member running the activity, do share your own memory too. 

Your participation goes a long way towards breaking down barriers between levels and creating more trust.

This activity is excellent for pulling members out of their comfort zones and creating meaningful working relationships.

7. Survivor

Time: 30 minutes

Group size: 4–6 

Objective: Problem solving, collaboration, creativity

In this fun activity, give your team a fictional emergency scenario, such as being stranded on a desert island or in the middle of the Arctic. 

Your employees will have to choose items that they’ll take with them to survive.

Here’s how to set it up:

  1. Give them an imaginary list of ten items, of which they can choose five. Include items such as a handful of seeds, a small pocket knife, a sword from the 1700s, 200 feet of cloth string or rope, a bedsheet, a two-liter bucket, one-liter of kerosene, a flint spark lighter, and so on. 
  2. Divide the team into groups and have them collaborate on which items they will choose to survive. 
  3. Then have them present their decisions to the entire group and have everyone decide on which team’s strategy is the best. 

8. Game of Possibilities

Time: 10 minutes

Group size: 4–6

Objective: Problem-solving, communication, creativity

Give an object to each small group. Participants must take turns acting out a unique use of that object, and teammates have to guess what that use is. 

For example, using chopsticks as knitting needles. 🥢

Let the innovation and creative thinking begin!

 9. The Common Factor

Time: 5 minutes

Group size: 4–6

Objective: Build rapport, overcome bias

In this quick team building activity, instruct each group to find one thing they all have in common. 

For example, one group discovers that they all love hiking.

Instruct the group of people to take on a hiker stereotype for the rest of the meeting. 

Maybe throughout the meeting, those members will use terms like “natural,” “peaceful,” or “rad” to identify with the stereotype. 

At the end of the meeting, discuss how stereotyping and passing judgment on a person’s qualities and preferences is ridiculous and blinding. 

To take it a step further, have each person end with one quality about themselves that typically lies outside of the stereotype of the common quality. 

Maybe one of the hikers loves designer handbags and shoes!

 10. A Team-Made Puzzle

Time: 20 minutes

Group size:

Objective: Collaboration

Print out an image and then cut it into eight perfect squares. 

Give each member of the group a square and a full-sized square sheet of paper. Instruct them to draw their pieces at scale. 

In the end, all participants will put their puzzle pieces together to identify the picture. 

This activity aims to demonstrate how each member contributes to the larger picture.

Psst… the pun was definitely intended. 

11. Simulated Problems

Time: 45–60 minutes

Group size: 4–6

Objective: Collaboration, problem solving

This fun game requires some creative problem solving.

Give members a fictional problem that relates to work. 

For example, if you manage a marketing team, create a scenario that the company has released a marketing campaign that many people found to be distasteful and discriminatory. 

Instruct them to brainstorm ideas and create a work plan for a public apology and strategies for moving forward.

What will future ads contain? 

How will your people work to gain back the company’s good reputation and credibility? 

Problem solving activities allow members to recognize mistakes before they take place in real life. 

They also enable companies to put processes in place to deal with such scenarios if they actually happen.

12. A Scavenger Hunt

Time: > 60 minutes

Group size: 4–6

Objective: Collaboration, problem solving, build rapport

A scavenger hunt is a classic event but can take a decent amount of time. 

It’s also the perfect time for your employees to channel their inner detectives! 🎩

Use your creativity to organize a list of clues and even trivia questions that lead team members to different items/locations. 🔎

If the company is located in Chicago, for example, Cloud Gate (or as most people know it: the giant bean statue) can be described on the list as the “place where people go to look at their curvy reflections.

Instruct participants to get a team photo at each location. The first team to return with the proof/items wins. 

Outdoor activities can be a fun way to let team members engage with each other outside of the workplace. 

Note: A scavenger hunt can also be an organized team event indoors around the office.

 13. Pencil Precision

Time: 20 minutes

Group size: 2

Objective: Collaboration, build rapport

Tie the ends of two long pieces of string or thin rope around the eraser-side of a pencil. 

Then instruct pairs of teammates to tie the other end of the pieces around their waists. 

Each team must stand back to back and work together to lower the pencil into an empty water bottle between them. 

The first pair to complete this goal wins.

 14. Human Knot

Time: 20 minutes

Group size: 8–15

Objective: Collaboration, building rapport, problem-solving, communication

Instruct participants to stand in a circle facing one another, shoulder to shoulder.

Have each member reach out with one hand and grab the hand of someone across the circle. 

Repeat this with the other hand. Set a time limit and instruct the team to un-knot themselves without releasing their hands.

 15. A Look at the Future

Time: 10 minutes

Group size: 4–6

Objective: Collaboration, build a vision

This game is all about embracing the future.

First, hand out newspapers to each small group and instruct them to mark down 10 fictional headlines of what the company will be doing in the future. 

Then, allow each group to share their headlines aloud. 

This team building activity helps teams contemplate long-term goals and establish a common goal amongst team members. 

This experience is also great for analyzing where each team member sees the company going.

16. Guess Who?

Time: 15 minutes

Group size: 5–10

Objective: Problem solving, communication

Keep masking tape or post-it notes on hand for this activity. 

Write a series of names on sheets of paper or sticky notes, such as celebrities or historical figures. 

Then, arrange the groups into circles. 

Each employee must tape one of the names to their forehead without looking at it. 

Participants will then go around the circle asking questions to find out clues of who they are. 

Only “yes” or “no” questions are allowed. If someone gets a “yes,” they are allowed another question.

 17. Frostbite

Time: 30–60 minutes

Group size: 4–6

Objective: Communication, collaboration, problem solving, build trust

This activity needs each group to leave their comfort zone.  

Gather the materials needed for this problem solving activity, such as building blocks, chairs, blindfolds, and sheets. 

Instruct groups to imagine that they are stranded in the Arctic. The objective is to elect a leader to build a shelter to survive. 

The challenge

The team leader has suffered from frostbite and therefore is unable to build the shelter. 

The second challenge

The other team members have been blinded by the snow and are wearing blindfolds. 

The team leader must give verbal instructions to their blind team members on how to build the shelter.

18. All Tied Up

Time: 10 minutes

Group size: 2–4

Objective: Collaboration, communication, problem-solving

Ready for some hands-on learning? 😉

Instruct pairs or small groups to stand in a tight circle facing one another. 

Use string or rope to tie their hands together. 

Teams must then accomplish a goal while tied together, such as completing a board game or jigsaw puzzle, making a sandwich, tying each of their shoes, acting out charades, or racing other teams across a finish line. 

19. Blind Drawing 

Time: 10–15 minutes

Group size: 2

Objective: Build trust, communication, collaboration

Instruct pairs to sit back to back. 

One team member will have a pencil and a piece of paper, and the other will have an object or picture. 

The team member with the picture/object must instruct their teammate to draw what’s in their hands without saying what it is. 

They can describe its properties, color, etc. but not precisely state what the object is.

Such a team building event will push participants to trust and listen to one another. 

20. Seemingly Nothing in Common

Time: 10 minutes

Group size: 4–6

Objective: Collaboration, problem-solving

For this fun team building activity, lay out a series of random objects with seemingly nothing in common. 

Then, ask each small team to pile the objects into categories. 

Have each group write down their answers. Once the time limit is over, each group will share their categories aloud and explain why they grouped them this way. 

Perhaps your team will see that they have things in common as well. 😉

21. River Crossing

Time: 15–30 minutes

Group size: 10–20

Objective: Collaboration, communication, building trust, problem-solving

This team building event is great for identifying your team’s strengths and weaknesses. 

Demarcate an area in your conference room or on the lawn (if outdoors) to be the river. 

This could be done by placing two long carpets head to head or putting paper sheets or rope to mark the river’s beginning and end.

Instruct your teams that this river is full of toxic waste, and they need to cross without touching the ‘water’ with hands or feet.

Provide cardboard squares as footholds that can be placed on the ‘river’ to cross. 

These cardboard squares can be moved as a person goes across the river. (Ensure that all the cardboard squares put head to head do not cover the entire length of the river).

If anyone in the team ‘falls’ into the river, for example, losing balance when trying to place your foot on the cardboard square, the entire team has to start over. 

The goal is not only to cross the river safely but also to assist your teammates in crossing.

22. Perfect Vacation

Time: 10–20 minutes

Group size:

Objective: Listening

This exercise is all about your employees’ listening skills.

Here’s how to do it:

1. Group members into pairs

2. Each person in a pair reveals to their partner what their ideal vacation would be (if time and money were no constraints) 🏖

3. After each pair has exchanged their plans, the other person must describe their partner’s trip as best they can

23. Sculpture Peek

Time: 30 minutes

Group size: 4–6

Objective: Communication, problem-solving, strategy 

This hands-on learning activity will require a large bucket of Lego building blocks or Jenga blocks. 

Start by building a model using the Lego blocks and hide it from the group. 

Then allow one team leader from each group to sneak a 10-second look at it.

Next, the team leader must relay what they have seen to their teammates to build the free-standing structure based on memory. 

After about one minute of trying to recreate the model, ask another member to come up for a “sneak peek” before going back to their team and telling them how to recreate the sculpture.

The goal? 

The first team to achieve an exact replica wins.

As this is a memory team activity, your team will also create some fantastic memories while playing it!

24. Electric Fence

Time: 20 minutes

Group size: 10–15

Objective: Collaboration, communication, building trust, problem-solving, building rapport

In this experiential team building event, create a waist-high ‘electric fence.’

You can do this by tying a string between two chairs kept at a distance from each other.

Each team member must cross the fence without touching it. 

Easy, right? 

Well, not exactly.

Participants must be touching one team member with a hand at all times and cannot go under the fence. This includes the rest of the team on either side of the fence. 

Fun activities and building events like this lead to a great combination of teamwork skills!

25. Team Jigsaw 

Time: 30 minutes

Group size: 8–20

Objective: Team collaboration, problem solving, communication

This game’s a simple one.

A team of 8–20 people (divided into two teams) has to complete a jigsaw puzzle within a specific timeframe.

So, what’s the catch?

Well, let’s just say there are some missing pieces to this puzzle.


Both teams will soon realize that they have a few pieces of a different jigsaw puzzle and that the opposing team has the pieces they need!

Both teams have to communicate clearly with each other to solve the problem.

Team members also have to be patient since they can only exchange one puzzle piece at a time.

To make this game even more difficult, you can keep the two teams in different rooms.

26. Build Bridges, Not Walls

Time: 60 minutes

Group size: 8–20

Objective: Creative thinking, communication, collaboration, problem solving 

This building activity is about collaboration and architecture!

Two teams must build separate halves of a bridge using the material they are given. Once their halves are done, they’ll have to figure out how to make the halves fit.

Here’s how to set it up:

1. Divide the participants into two even teams

2. Collect materials that can be used to build a bride (straws, lego, cardboard, and other materials to build with)

3. Make sure that both teams are far away from each other

4. Teams can exchange ideas about their bridges but can’t see what each team is building

5. Give each team 10 minutes to come up with a concept design

6. Give teams 30 minutes to build the bridge

7. Ask both teams to try to combine their bridges with the remaining time

While your employees build a bridge, they’ll also break down the walls between them, hence the name of the game.😉

Additionally, this building activity is similar to the real work environment since teams need to ensure that their projects and team goals align with the bigger picture.

27. Code Of Conduct

Time: 30+ minutes

Group size: 10–30 

Objective: Build mutual trust, establish group values

This activity helps teams communicate their values by listing what matters most to them on a whiteboard. 

It’s a great team building activity to have before the start of a workshop.

Here’s how to set it up:

1. Write down ‘Meaningful and “Pleasant” on a whiteboard

2. Ask everyone what they think would make the workshop meaningful and pleasant.

3. Ask everyone to write their ideas on post-it notes

4. Collate everyone’s opinions on a mind map.

5. Make sure every participant understands the idea. If they don’t, then you need to change the idea until you reach a consensus

6. Once everyone agrees on the ideas, those ideas will make up the code of conduct for the group throughout the workshop

The agreed-upon values will help the workshop run smoothly.

28. Marshmallow Challenge

Time: 18–30 minutes

Group size: 2–40+

Objective: Communication, team collaboration, problem solving

This team building activity requires teams to use 20 spaghetti sticks, one meter of tape, one meter of string, and… yes, you guessed it; one marshmallow.

Teams must build the tallest free-standing structure within the time limit using the above materials with the marshmallow on top.

The Marshmallow challenge also encourages teams to communicate effectively; while leaving room for innovation and creativity.

It also teaches teams about risk management and assessment, which is applicable in the real work environment.

29. Company Outing

Time: > 60 minutes

Group size: Entire team

Objective: Communication, building rapport

Though this event is the most expensive team building event, it makes the entire team feel extremely valued. 

This is a fantastic corporate team building exercise and works best if you have people in different departments who do not interact daily.

The idea is to invite the entire team to an exciting event like a cooking class or even karaoke!

It could also be a fun outing experience that involves a golf game and allows for some relaxation. 

Engaging with each other outside of the workplace can also make team members feel relaxed and at ease. 

This helps them to open up and bond naturally.

This is a fantastic team building event for large groups and small groups alike. 

The best part? 

You can use this team building program as an opportunity for a lunch-and-learn!

Employee training out of the conference room can be both a useful and fun experience! 

5 Virtual Team Building Activities

A recent case study by ClickUp found that 51% of American workers feel as though they lose at least an hour/day being inefficient at work from something as simple as feeling disconnected from the team.

Employees who are continually doing remote work hardly get to see their teammates let alone bond with them!

So here are five remote team building exercises that will make your virtual team feel closer than ever:

30. Virtual game show

Time: 60 minutes

Group size: 4–500

Objective: Problem solving, creative thinking, and teamwork

Virtual game shows are a fun way to energize your remote team.

Many websites offer different versions of this virtual team building game. They’ll even provide your virtual team with a game host and organize your Zoom meeting for you.

There are also tons of fun games to play:

  • Multiple Choice
  • Survey Says
  • Team Face-Off
  • Spin and Solve
  • Match Up Wars

These virtual team building game shows are designed to give your remote team the classic game show experience.

31. Virtual happy hour

Time: 60 minutes+

Group size: Entire team

Objective: Improve relationships

Use team building apps to hold a virtual happy hour!

The point of virtual happy hour is to strengthen virtual team relationships and get to know each team member better.

You can also include fun games to strengthen the team bond.

32. Pictionary

Time: 30 minutes

Group size: 6+

Objective: Creative thinking, team collaboration

This virtual team building game requires a digital whiteboard that every employee can use simultaneously, for example, ClickUp’s Whiteboard or the whiteboard feature in Zoom. 

You’ll also need to select a facilitator to be the scorekeeper and timekeeper. 

The facilitator should also think of a way to select a team to go first.

Here’s how to set it up:

1. Download a random word generator

2. Create two teams 

3. Have each team select a drawer

4. The drawer has to draw pictures that the random word generator selects (in 60 seconds)

3. The team that guesses correctly first gets the point

4. The team that guessed correctly gets to go next

Got some introverts in your team?

Pictionary is an excellent team building activity that encourages every teammate to participate. This way, even the most introverted remote workers feel comfortable playing!

33. A peek into each other’s homes

Time: 20–30minutes

Group size: 4+

Objective: Build rapport, enhance team relationships

Yep, that’s right.

In this virtual team building activity, you get to welcome your virtual team to your crib!

You can take a short video of your home and list some of your favorite things about it, and then share the video on your screen on Zoom.

Or you can do it live over any video conferencing collaboration tool.

This can be a weekly event where one team member shows off their home.

This activity is a fun way to learn more about your teammates!

34. Virtual escape room

Time: 60 minutes

Group size: 4+

Objective: Problem solving, team collaboration, creative thinking

There are sites like The Escape Game that offer virtual escape rooms for remote workers.

All you need are a video conferencing tool and a digital dashboard to play.

Here’s how it works:

1. There will be a live camera feed

2. Your team will have a game host who will provide information and instructions

3. Your team will also have a game guide who will be your eyes, ears, hands, and feet in the room

4. Your team can direct the game guide to find clues 

5. Keep your clues and progress organized in your digital whiteboard

The point of this team building activity is to help teams open doors to improved teamwork.🚪

Looking for more virtual activities? Here is a list of 40 more virtual team building ideas for your remote team.

10 Benefits of Corporate Team Building Activities

Here are the 10 top benefits that you can reap through team-building activities:

  1. Communicate a shared vision throughout the team with team communication apps
  2. Build a more effective and enjoyable company culture
  3. Bridge the gap between different departments
  4. Prevent and discourage dysfunctional behavior through bonding, teamwork, and communication
  5. Improve collaborative decision making
  6. Nurture trust, familiarity, and understanding
  7. Boosts employee engagement to meet HR Goals
  8. Enhance team communication skills, leadership skills, and team dynamics
  9. Promote healthy company pride, playful competition, and employee motivation
  10. Make employees feel valued

Let’s Get Team Building!

There are tons of other team building activities that you could choose from, like the egg drop, the barter puzzle, company treasure hunts, and office trivia. 

The ones listed here are just a few of our favorites. We use them regularly to boost employee morale and bond with our teammates.

Once you have completed a couple of team building activities, consider creating a memory wall at work of photos and memories from your team’s experiential learning process. 

In doing so, you will improve the company culture, and teams are reminded of their progress!

Want more tips on creating a great team? Hone in on your team norms with 9 Team Norms To Help You Create a High-Performing Team.

Questions? Comments? Visit our Help Center for support.

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