Getting the conversation started at work across teams and departments is always a challenge. It is even harder if a portion or all of your team is working remotely from home. Implementing conversation starters into your day-to-day is a great way to break the ice and start building more meaningful relationships. It is of course only one small aspect of your team culture but it is an important first step.
Choosing The Right Icebreaker Questions To Get The Conversation Started
Choosing the right icebreakers and using them in the right way is key for them to be effective conversation starters. Here are things to consider when choosing your icebreaker questions:
- Professional: Your office is not a casual hang with your best friends. Fight the urge to have casual questions. They should fit into the company culture that you have, but if new team members have not been integrated then they might be shocked and deterred with casual questions.
- A Touch Of Personality: Be careful not to choose Icebreakers that are too personal. A good conversation starter will allow individuals to share a bit about their personality, but not share personal information. Think about what they might share on social media publicly versus privately (most professionals that is). Questions about travel and hobbies are great. Questions about family and health might be going too far.
- Make It Easy: Simplify the process of Icebreakers so that individuals do not need to do anything manually to contribute to the conversation. Setting up a shared spreadsheet or Word document will cause friction and lower participation. Use a simple schedule with as little work for the participants as possible.
- Allow People To Comment: The conversation starter part comes in when people comment or provide feedback. Simply answering a question does not actually do anything. It needs to be automatically shared with the team in a format that other team members can comment on.
- Do Not Make It Live: Doing planned icebreakers over live video is just awkward! Nobody wants to be put on the spot to answer Icebreakers over video or live. Give participants the opportunity to answer on their own schedule. Asking conversation starters in a small group or meeting might be fine, but having a larger group of people trying to share and comment on their responses will be chaotic. Also, be prepared for a portion of team members who will not be comfortable answering any questions at all…and that is okay.
- Store The Answers: The answers to Icebreakers are a great insight into an individual’s personality and can be used over and over again for meetings and new connections. Keep them in a place where they are accessible for other team members to review.
- Utilize Them In Other Team Building Events: Have Icebreaker answers available prior to other events so that team members can easily utilize them to get conversations started.
- Use Icebreaker Questions That Are Relevant To Your Team’s Values: Your team is unique, so you want to avoid making every question generic. Create questions that are relevant to your team’s values and culture.
Getting the conversation started at work with team Icebreakers is an important first step in building more meaningful relationships at work. The key is to implement a process that encourages the most participation possible. Any manual process or friction will deter team members from participating. Without participation the entire exercise is pointless. Once team members have contributed responses keep them handy for future team members to use for onboarding or have them handy for future team networking events.
ChatFox is a Slack chatbot that builds remote team culture. Remote teams that only engage through projects, tasks, and deadlines do not foster a culture around shared values and goals. Build a strong remote team culture, improve remote team productivity, and eliminate team member isolation. Use ChatFox Icebreakers to build rapport with team members, use ChatFox Coffee Chats to have meaningful conversations with people across your organization, or use ChatFox Shout Outs to recommend a colleague and endorse their skills. Unlike other remote team solutions, ChatFox looks at remote team culture from a strategic perspective and has created engaging chats for your team that provide management with insights into remote team engagement, skills, contributions, and mobility.conversation starterseasy icebreakersfun icebreakersfun team questionsice breakers for workice breakers questionsicebreaker appinteresting conversation startersteam icebreaker questionsteam icebreakersteam networkingwork ice breakers