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Benefits of Regular Remote Team Building

There are a lot of factors that go into cultivating a thriving workforce culture. Your team might be rather large and looking to strengthen unity, or small and seeking to promote workplace harmony. Your employees may be partially or entirely distributed, and with more workers interested in increasing their remote time, you have an even bigger responsibility to maintain the camaraderie that in-person socialization provides. And there aren’t many tools already out there that help you foster a culture of interpersonal connection.

Coffee Break Contest (CBC) builds a positive social culture through weekly fun activities that connect you to your team, wherever you are. We’d like to share with you the benefits of our approach and how it can shift your culture from fragmented to connected.

How Coffee Break Contest cultivates culture

Taking a break to chat with colleagues isn’t just good for staff morale; 15 minutes of socialization a day can result in a 20% increase in workplace productivity. However, it can be challenging for everyone to benefit from this boost, given that over 60% of companies today have remote workers, and in 10 years we could see approximately 35% of full-time, permanent employees working remotely.

Coffee Break Contest is a series of weekly challenges that teams can complete over email and video chat in about 15 minutes. Partners are shuffled every week, connecting folks across departments. You can take a “brain break” from your desk to connect with teammates, get out of your shell, and stretch your problem-solving skills through exercising your creativity. Our program makes work breaks productive and leaves you with a feeling of satisfaction.

CBC creates a common space; an ongoing, company-wide social event that naturally includes distributed workers. You can feel like an active part of a team not just in the work you do, but the fun you have together.

Our format is welcoming and approachable. The challenges are designed to be easy to complete while still engaging your creative side. We provide curated puzzles, challenges, and group activities with attention towards your team, your goals, and even what’s happening seasonally or current cultural events.

Having fun at work improves overall job satisfaction, and promoting organizational citizenship builds a robust workplace community.

Interpersonal benefits

When you work remotely, it’s easy to feel lonely. Sometimes even dialing into a lunchtime meeting or on-site event is a reminder of what you’re missing out on—especially if the varying cost of living across different offices means morale funds of varying amounts.

We can see these issues even in companies without distributed employees. When your team is heads-down for too long, they can feel emotionally separated from each other, even if they are only physically separated by a partition.

Our goal is to fortify interpersonal connections and reignite workplace engagement. CBC connects folks from across the country or across the hall with frequent facetime, delivering weekly fun and easy wins that leave folks feeling valued for having participated. Our activities encourage enriching socialization in which you not only take a break together, but can take risks in an open environment for thinking outside the box.

CBC provides in-person touch points that fill in the gaps of understanding your colleagues. If someone is running late for a meeting, you’re likely to be more empathetic when you know they’re managing childcare, or recovering from an illness. Through these activities you’re reminded that your coworkers are more than just their emails or a voice on a conference call.

You not only get to know more about your teammates outside of work, you gain a greater insight into how they work—their learning styles, communication styles, and general preferences in interacting. You may even identify more easily when someone on your team is ready to take on new challenges—and where they might excel.

Organizational benefits

It’s always beneficial to socialize at your annual retreat, but what happens the rest of the year, and how do you support virtual workers who may be missing out on those events? Distributed teams can’t socialize spontaneously the same way that colleagues in the same office can; there’s no opportunity to share stories about your weekend over the water cooler or catch up over lunch. You may already have regular birthday celebrations or coordinated movie screenings across different offices, but organizing such activities frequently isn’t always sustainable. We provide teams with opportunities to connect in smaller, easier ways without complicated planning and logistics.

Equally as important to the challenges themselves is the weekly recap, which shares each team’s contributions and gives an update of the company-wide leaderboard. This provides a shared touchpoint for everyone, beyond just your partner that week, and helps build an ongoing culture of fun and engagement. It’s another moment in the week for camaraderie and promotes a fun and healthy outlet for competition.

Our program is also a great way for new employees to jump in at the same level of participation and get assimilated into the team quickly. And because you have new partners every week from across all levels of your company, you can cross hierarchical tiers and break down barriers through cross-departmental communication.

CBC is an easy way to take ownership of your culture. It’s not just something that you say you encourage; you are actively taking steps towards aligning your cultural values. We can help you embrace fun, creativity, and create a thriving community at work.