Icebreaker games can help everyone feel a little more at ease with one another, whether you’re assembling well-known individuals for a new project or creating a brand-new team. These kinds of games raise awareness, uplift spirits, foster interpersonal relationships, and induce laughter.
Icebreakers are much more than simple distractions or ways to pass the time at work for your staff. They aid in team building, communication, motivation, and engagement.
Finding the greatest icebreaker games for work teams and using them in your workplace is the best method to accomplish that.
That’s exactly what you’ll discover on this list; we’ve got everything from quick icebreakers and icebreakers for small groups to virtual icebreakers and icebreakers for meetings. You still have to choose the best ones; nothing else needs to be done.
Let’s first go over some icebreaker fundamentals before we move on to the actual icebreaker games.
What are Icebreaker Games?
An icebreaker is a game or activity that is used to warm up the discourse during a meeting, training session, team-building exercise, or other activity.
In events where participant comfort level and communication are key considerations, icebreakers play a vital role.
When you want participants to fully own the outcomes of the meeting or session, they fully engage participants and aid in making sure that all attendees are treated as equal players.
These tasks dismantle the obstacles that a workplace’s hierarchy, organizational structure, job descriptions, and numerous departmental bodies impose.
In particular, when participants don’t know one another, icebreakers are beneficial. However, they can also be a really effective way to get everyone in the room warmed up, even if they already know each other.
Good icebreaker games may get people chatting, make people laugh, and help participants feel more at ease right away, especially if they come from various organizational levels or departments.
How Do Icebreakers Work?
An icebreaker can allow individuals who are unfamiliar with one another to get to know one another.
It’s the best tool for getting participants involved and enticing them to participate in a meeting, training, or team-building activity. People feel at ease enough to speak up after a thoughtfully chosen icebreaker.
An icebreaker can still be useful to start a conversation and help attendees feel more comfortable participating in a meeting even when they already know each other or are attending a regularly planned meeting.
As you’ll see, there are several icebreakers with various functions. But there is one thing that all icebreaker games have in common: they can all support the formation of cohesive, powerful teams.
11 Best Icebreaker Games for Your Work Teams
The top 11 icebreaker games for teams that your employees will undoubtedly appreciate are broken down into a few categories in the paragraphs that follow.
For business teams, we’ve chosen a few quick, entertaining games that will help people get to know one another and forge closer bonds.
1. Two Truths and a Lie
This is one of the best icebreaker games that are timeless and also works well as an icebreaker.
This activity can be done with 10 to 15 participants, and it shouldn’t take over 20 minutes.
Participants in this game must identify themselves by presenting two facts and one lie about themselves, as the game’s name suggests.
The object of the game is for other players to figure out which statement is true and which is false.
The remarks don’t have to be revealing; they might just be generalizations about interests, hobbies, bizarre encounters, etc.
2. Trivia Game
Trivia games are always a good idea. All you have to do is pick a subject, make a list of questions, and schedule a time to play.
TriviaNerd is a fantastic resource for organizing an online live multiplayer trivia competition.
Given that general knowledge is the focus of most trivia games, you can elevate your icebreaker trivia game by selecting a particular theme or topic. Maybe a trivia game with a holiday theme, like Christmas trivia or a Disney theme?
Consult with your staff to determine their preferences before deciding on the trivia’s topic or theme. You may, for instance, conduct a survey and choose the subject that the majority favors.
However, if you feel that there are too many diverse tastes, there’s always general knowledge trivia if you don’t want anyone to feel left out.
Finally, pick an appropriate video conferencing system that is user-friendly, enables everyone to view the questions, and facilitates communication.
For instance, Zoom enables you to put players in breakout rooms when you play trivia in groups so they may speak quietly before responding to a question.
These icebreaker games make the entire “learning process” much more enjoyable, enable employees to use a variety of abilities, and encourage critical thinking and healthy competition.
3. Find 10 Things in Common
One of the best icebreaker games for big groups is undoubtedly this.
Consider that you are the manager of a huge organization whose departments hardly ever communicate with one another.
Host a company-wide lunch to encourage staff to get to know one another better (or a Zoom call).
Make sure you divide everyone up into distinct groups that contain representatives from all departments.
Ask the groups to come up with 10 things they have in common (besides the obvious, e.g., that they are human).
You might discover that although your workplace is on the west coast, a strangely large number of employees have all visited Keokuk, Iowa.
4. Alphabet Brainstorm
In scattergrams, it is far more difficult to think on your toes. The game’s host can select from options as diverse as foods and nations or as bizarre as “Things Granny might say.”
In each round, a random letter from the alphabet will be highlighted, and participants will be asked to think of any nouns or phrases that begin with that letter.
The best feature is that competitors can argue over answers to win. A wonderful conversation starter for your intensely competitive coworkers.
5. One Word Game
These game, which is well-known icebreaker games, asks participants to sum up events in a single word.
Divide the staff into smaller groups once the meeting’s subject has been determined. Identify the topic of discussion and have everyone define it in one word. Take employee involvement as an example.
Through this practice, organizations can prepare for a project or circumstance. Additionally, it will let managers know what the staff anticipates the meeting to cover.
As an alternative to this game, participants could use one word, to sum up how they’re feeling right now. For instance, “I feel like a cheetah.”
6. Pop Quiz
The ideal technique to introduce your team to the meeting you’re presenting can be through pop quizzes.
Whether you want to make the pop quiz humorous or try to make it relevant to the meeting’s topic will greatly influence its substance.
For instance, you might choose questions that would reflect this if you’re planning a meeting to talk about the future corporate rebranding.
Here are a few ideas:
1. Why are we redesigning now?
2. When did our business last undergo a rebranding?
3. Who will design this project’s logo?
4. What do the colors of the logo represent?
5. To whom are we seeking to communicate?
6. How will our customers be impacted by our rebranding?
7. Has the makeup of our clientele altered over time?
You decide how to set up this pop quiz. The questions can be written on the board and copied by your staff onto paper or in their notebooks, or you can choose a more technological way.
We think that these meeting icebreaker games are excellent for businesses looking for a method to unwind their staff before the meeting while keeping everyone focused on the main issue.
It’s also a fantastic alternative when you want to encourage your staff to reflect on work-related issues without doing so in a formal manner (of course, this applies only if you include company-related questions in your pop quiz).
7. The Scavenger Hunt
A traditional scavenger hunt is an option if you have a little extra time on your hands. Such an occurrence may occur on-site, depending on where your office is located (once you start working there again, that is).
Alternatively, if you’re feeling particularly daring, you could choose to send your team around the corner or even across town (though not recommended during the pandemic).
A fun alternative is to do a virtual scavenger hunt, where the object is to find anything that “meets the description” rather than a specific item.
You might instruct your staff to take photos of home items that suit one of the following descriptions, for instance:
1. Something personal to them
2. Something that brings back memories from their youth
3. A possession they detest to the point of indifference but have retained
These icebreaker games “scavenger hunts” are not only entertaining, but they also encourage group communication and cooperation in the search for issues and answers.
8. Share the Love
While scattered teams might not embrace or shake hands, you can still show your affection for one another in this icebreaker.
Any kind of kind thing to say to a teammate is acceptable as long as it is done with decency and good judgment.
In order to ensure that everyone receives an equal amount of appreciation, each individual who receives a kind note will be the next to share a message with a group member who hasn’t.
Call them out for their support on a project, their enthusiasm for the group, or their attractive grin.
9. Rock-paper-scissors with People
Even if you’re a robot with artificial intelligence, chances are you’ve played rock-paper-scissors with a friend or an enemy at least once.
However, you have probably never used the game in a group environment.
This is how it goes: Create as many teams as you need from your personnel. Let each person develop unique body cues for each movement. A best-of-five series between each team will decide the winner of the tournament.
A word of caution: Everyone should stretch before the event because it may become quite stressful.
And take care: Laughing too much might weary employees, so you might want a doctor on call.
10. Arts and Crafts
Maintaining decorative souvenirs in your environment to remind you of your team while learning something new might be a terrific opportunity for team building.
During the Zoom call or YouTube tutorial, assign an instructor to lead everyone in following the same steps to create a craft like simple origami, a sketch, or a painting.
11. What do we have in Common?
These icebreaker games work best for new hires who can feel more reserved when virtually getting to know the team.
Find a point of agreement with your team members and start a conversation. To get everyone thinking, have a manager or team leader start the conversation by mentioning something they are passionate about, such as a favorite meal, piece of music, or show.
Give it to the team member who is most passionate about that subject and ask them to share a new one.
Common icebreaker games inquiry can get one or two sentences from participants, but if you’re passionate about the topic, more personality will emerge from even the most unlikely call participants.
The most effective icebreaker games can deepen working relationships, improve brainstorming sessions, and foster an inclusive environment.
We’ve put together a list of the top office icebreaker games and activities so you can get the most out of your team-building activities.
Use one of these games the next time your team gets together instead of asking, “How are you all doing?” You will get some smarter, more insightful answers than, “I’m good.”