Blog·Employee Engagement

July 25, 2019

117 Quick Team Building Icebreakers for Remote Teams

Icebreakers for team building can reduce WFH stress and bring remote teams together. We have put together some smart and funny examples for you.

  • Remote work icebreaker questions
  • Classic icebreaker questions
  • Personal icebreaker questions
  • Food and drink related icebreaker questions
  • Travel icebreaker questions
  • Work-related icebreaker questions
  • Funny icebreaker questions
  • Reflective icebreaker questions

How well do you know your team? Do you wish you knew more about them? Asking questions is one of the best ways to get to know people better and build strong relationships.

Since the shift to remote working, team building activities have never been more important. Leaders need to spend time planning activities that will help remote teams bond, even when they are working at home alone. This will help disconnected teams to feel engaged and help create a collaborative company culture. The PeopleGoal team recently tried some quick team building icebreakers in our virtual meeting to help boost motivation and the outcome was incredible.

📗 Read our: Remote Work Guide: How to support your workforce

icebreaker question example

What animal would you choose to fuse together with your current human body? You must use one straight line to split your bodies.

We sat in bemusement for a few seconds before answers started flowing in.

Bottom half whale, maybe?

But then came the flood of questions in response to that answer:

Where would you live, land or sea?

Would you expect the local council to continuously douse you in water?

Wouldn’t you look slightly odd having a massive bottom half and a tiny human top half?

The ease with which conversation flowed indicated that this question was a perfect icebreaker. So we began considering other wacky icebreaker games and team building activities to help us bond during our team meetings. Read our suggestions below! And as a side note, read the rest of the blog to find out the correct answer to the original question.

What are icebreaker questions?

Icebreaker questions are light-hearted conversation starters that help teams to get to know each other better at work. They are typically one line questions that encourage people to share some information about themselves, their likes/dislikes or their experiences.

icebreaker questions definition

When should you use icebreakers?

Quick icebreakers to help you connect with your team can be used at any time. They are really flexible and can be tailored to the needs of the group of people, and usually last around 15 minutes. For example, introductory ice breakers and getting-to-know-you icebreakers are often used when a team gets new members or on collaboration tasks so that people can get to know one another quicker.

Alternatively, for a team that has worked with each other for a while, icebreakers may act to boost engagement and collaboration. Or team leaders may use an icebreaker to exemplify and integrate the superordinate goal (like boosting teamwork or appreciation).

How can icebreakers help you connect with a team?

Quick team building icebreakers help to break the ‘ice’ which usually forms when unfamiliar people first meet. Icebreakers help connect up a disjointed team and create an atmosphere which reduces potential anxieties in individuals as well as increase cohesion between team members, especially for remote workers.

Meeting colleagues virtually during WFH can be awkward at first. Icebreaker activities help you open up conversation and get to know one another in small groups. Questions like these engage everyone in the team in a fun and informal way. They promote communication and collaboration to achieve a common goal in an easy-going manner.

What makes a good ice breaker?

icebreaker questions dos and don'ts

To make it easier for you, we have compiled a list of ice breaker questions to get you started.

17 Remote Work Icebreaker questions

  • How many of you would it take to defeat a lion? By the way, you have clones that have groupthink.

  • How much money would you pay to see your favourite artist (dead or alive) play live?

  • What political or historical figure would you like to sit with for a 3-course meal? Additionally, tell me your 3 course meal?

  • If you had the opportunity to have a sixth toe would you and why?

  • What kind of ------- are you? Insert a wide range of things here i.e. pizza, fruit, animal, national landmark, item of clothing, mythological being, inanimate object…

  • If you had the entire world’s attention for 30 seconds what would you say?

  • Please rank different forms of potato from worst to first. (i.e. baked, mash, fries, new potatoes etc.)

  • Discuss unsolvable questions. Why is abbreviation such a long word? How fast is the speed of dark? How many fish constitute a school? Why is the word for fear of long words so long? (It's Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia...)

  • What superhero power would you have and why? A classic.

  • Would you rather be stuck in a room with a tiger or a hippo? Additionally, would you rather be stuck in a room with one of these animals for five minutes or face a rhino running down a corridor.

  • Would you keep your current eyes or change them to have the acuity of that of an eagle, but they are also the same size as that of an eagle?

  • How long would it take you to drink the amount of water in a swimming pool? You probably would need to say that in this scenario there are no health consequences and the water is not chlorinated.

  • Which one of Henry VIII’s wives would you be?

  • Yes or no? – a quick fire conversation to have with anyone or everyone team. Start firing questions at each other in which they should answer almost immediately. If you want to discuss or contend any answers do it! Questions you may want to fire at someone include: ‘Blue or red?’, ‘TV or film’, ‘chocolate or crisps’, ‘hot or cold’, ‘city or countryside’, ‘apple or orange, ‘beer or wine’, ‘Monet or Manet’, ‘plane or boat’ or ‘legs or arms’.

  • What is the order of Monopoly property colours that you buy?

  • Which historical era would you like to live in? If you want a bit of a rogue extension to this question, ask people to detail their narrative from birth to death in that era.

  • If you run at the speed of sound would you still be able to hear the music playing from your headphones?

100 More Amazing Icebreakers!

Classic icebreaker questions

  • If you were an animal, what animal would you be?
  • If you were stranded on a deserted island, what three items would you bring with you?
  • Who would be invited to your dream dinner party?
  • If you could meet any historical figure, who would you meet and why
  • Do you have any pets?
  • Are you a cat or a dog person?
  • What is your favorite animal?
  • What fashion trend would you bring back?
  • If you won the lottery, what would you do with the money?
  • What is the most interesting fact you know?
  • What five places do you want to visit before you die?
  • What talent would you like to learn?
  • If you were featured in the news what would it be for?
  • Can you play a musical instrument?
  • What was your first job?

Personal icebreaker questions

  • What's your favorite tv show?
  • What is your favorite album of all time?
  • What is the best book you have read recently?
  • What is your star sign?
  • What would your ideal weekend look like?
  • What is your favorite hobby?
  • What is your idea or fun?
  • Do you have any hidden talents?
  • If you had the time what skill would you like to learn?
  • Can you speak any languages?
  • If you could be fluent in any language which one would it be?
  • Have you ever met anyone famous?
  • What are your favorite games to play?
  • Are you an early bird or a night owl?
  • What three apps do you use most on your phone?
  • What emoji do you use most?
  • What's your favorite meal of the day?
  • What is a recent dream you had that made you laugh?
  • What are you grateful for?
  • What motivates you?

Food and drink related icebreaker questions

  • Are you a foodie?
  • What is your favorite food?
  • Are you a tea or coffee person?
  • If you were a vegetable what vegetable would you be?
  • If you could only drink 5 drinks for the rest of your life what would they be?
  • If you could only eat 1 food for the rest of your life what would it be?
  • What is the weirdest food you have ever eaten?
  • What food or drink would you put in room 101?
  • Do you prefer salty or sweet foods?
  • What is your dream meal? (starter, main course, side, drink, dessert)
  • What is the best restaurant you have ever been too and what did you eat there?
  • What is your favorite pizza topping?
  • What is the most disgusting food you have ever eaten?
  • What is your favorite sandwich filling?
  • How do you prefer your eggs?

Travel icebreaker questions

  • What is your favorite holiday destination?
  • What is the best holiday you've ever been on and why?
  • If you could go on holiday tomorrow, where would you go?
  • Do you prefer flying alone or with company?
  • Do you prefer holidays on the beach or in the mountains?
  • Do you prefer relaxing or action packed holidays?
  • How many continents have you visited?
  • What is the worst holiday you've ever been on and why?
  • What's the longest trip you've ever been on?
  • Would you go travelling for longer than 2 months?

Work-related icebreaker questions

  • What is the most challenging project you've ever worked on?
  • What has been your favorite job?
  • What has been your least favorite job?
  • What characteristic do you value most in your co-workers?
  • What is your greatest achievement at work?
  • What do you do to unwind after a busy day at work?
  • What aspect of your job are you most excited about this year?
  • Money no object what would be your dream job?
  • What's the best advice you've ever been given at work?
  • What work-related skill that you would like to develop?
  • Do you have a good work-life balance?
  • What is your typical office lunch?
  • Do you prefer working remotely or in the office?
  • Is it better to start late or leave early from work?
  • What is your favorite work holiday?

Funny icebreaker questions

  • What's your party trick?
  • What's your guilty pleasure?
  • What's the worst haircut you've ever had?
  • What was your most embarrassing moment as a child?
  • What is the best prank you have ever pulled on someone?
  • What is the silliest thing you have ever done?
  • If you could choose one superpower what would it be and why?
  • What weird habits did you pick up from your parents?
  • What's your go to karaoke song?
  • Did you name your car? What is it?
  • What is the worst fashion trend or style you have rocked?
  • What reality show would you most like to be on?
  • What song do you want played at your funeral?
  • What would you do in an alien invasion?
  • Who is the best spice girl?

Reflective icebreaker questions

  • Where did you grow up?
  • What is your earliest childhood memory?
  • When you were younger what did you want to do when you grew up?
  • If you could go back in time to meet your ancestors what would you ask them?
  • If you could meet your descendants what would you tell them about 2020?
  • What piece of advice would you give your younger self?
  • If you could go back to one age in your life what age would you choose?
  • If you could choose to stop ageing forever would you?
  • If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?
  • What would you like to be remembered for?

There are loads more weird and wacky icebreaker questions to help team building and you’ll be surprised how popular the topics turnout to be and how much debate they actually create. Try them out for yourself at your next team building session… wherever that might be.

And in case you were wondering what animal would you choose to fuse together, the correct answer is bottom half ostrich.

If our ideas piqued your curiosity on collaboration watch this great talk by Tom Wujec on a simple icebreaker called the "marshmallow problem" for team building. It is a fun icebreaker for small and large groups. The activity requires problem solving and can contribute to improving communication and creating effective teams.

Enjoyed this article? Check out our recent webcast How to Drive Better Employee Engagement or an article we wrote covering Employee Well-being Initiatives for 2021.

Need helping boosting engagement for your remote team? Book a demo with PeopeGoal today!

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