For Remote Staff


Getting to Know You, Countdown Version

Description

This is an engaging and visual version of the popular Customer Service Week Getting to Know You activity.

Materials

Prizes for the winners.

Directions

Prepare a list of fun “yes” or “no” style questions for your team. You will need at least 10 questions.

To begin the activity, ask everyone in your virtual meeting to hold up one hand with all five fingers extended. Next, the leader will ask each of the questions. If a participant can answer “yes” to the question, they put down one finger. The participant to put down all five fingers first is the winner.

Sample

Here are some sample questions to get you started:

  • Have you adopted a pet this year?
  • Do you know all of the words to “All I want for Christmas is You”
  • Have you run a marathon?
  • Do you have an old-school record player?
  • Have you visited more than three foreign countries?
  • Do you have more than one tattoo?
  • Have you made bread from scratch?
  • Can you say “thank you” in three languages?
  • Have you ever gotten a customer’s name horribly wrong?
  • Did you visit a national park this year?

Discussion

Make time at the end of the activity to dig into some of the responses. For example, “Everyone who adopted a pet. Tell us about who you welcomed into your home.”

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Meme Contest

Description

A Meme contest lets individuals share their sense of humor and everyone share a good natured laugh.

Materials

See links listed below.

Directions

This activity is based on the Make Your Own Meme Contest at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont. With a few simple steps, it will work in virtually any office.

Choose six to eight photos that will spark ideas for your team. We recommend selecting photos from Creative Commons licensed material. These images are in the public domain. This means that you can share, use, and remix these images. Learn more and select images at https://search.creativecommons.org

Ask participants to create one or more Memes using the photos provided. For inspiration, provide some recent popular Memes or the samples from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont.

To produce high quality memes, participants should use one of the following meme creators. These sites allow participants to upload the photo of their choice and to add their text to the image. Next they can email Memes to the activity organizer. Two popular sites for creating Memes are:

https://filmora.wondershare.com/meme-maker
https://www.kapwing.com/meme-maker

Finally, share the best Memes with everyone on the team. Announce the first, second, and third place winners or allow the group to vote for their favorites.

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Best and Worst Customer Service

Description

Frontline reps will share service stories and develop a list of what to do and what not to do when working with customers.

Materials

Paper and pen, or white board and marker, for the leader.

Directions

First, draw a line down the center of the paper. Label one side, “What to Do,” and the other side, “What NOT to Do.”

Ask participants to think of the best experience they have ever had with a customer service rep. Invite three or four people to share their experiences. As they are telling their stories, add key words and phrases in the column headed, “What to Do.” For example, listened, asked great questions, really cared, etc.

Now, ask participants to think of the worst experience they have ever had with a customer service rep. Again, invite three or four people to share their experiences. Add key words and phrases in the column headed, “What NOT to Do.” For example, interrupted, ignored, argued, etc.

Remote Tip

This activity works well when the leader shares handwriting on screen via Zoom or another collaboration platform. Discussion will be ongoing while the leader takes notes which are viewed by all participants.

Discussion

After the activity is completed ask everyone to take a quiet moment later in the day to think about their own work and to ensure that it reflects the team’s dos and don’ts.

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Split Personality

Description

This witty activity was developed by a customer service manager. Her goal was to help team members get to know each other while working from home.

This activity requires Zoom or another collaboration platform.

Materials

None

Directions

Select a date for the activity. Ask reps to dress with special care on that day. They should dress in appropriate office attire on the top and for a hobby or favorite activity on the bottom.

Next, call on each person individually to stand up and describe what they are wearing.

Reps will learn about each other’s interests and perhaps find some common ground. 

Discussion

Were you surprised by any of the split personalities in our group?

Has this sparked interest in trying a new activity yourself?

This activity suggests that we don’t have to be all business all of the time. How do you find balance between work and hobbies?

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Count Off

Description

This activity was adapted from the classic activity book, The Big Book of Virtual Teambuilding Games.

In this activity, participants focus on communication skills and try to avoid talking over each other. The game can be played with local teams, remote teams, or hybrid teams via phone or collaboration platform.

As the group struggles to stop talking over each other, they may realize that they need a system, such as speaking in alphabetical order by last name.

Some groups will come to this realization and decide on a plan. Others will not.

Materials

None

Directions

The challenge is for the team to count up to the number of people on the team. For example, a team of 10 needs to count from one to 10. If two team members speak at the same time, the team starts from the beginning. When this happens, a different person must start the count-off.

Discussion

Questions for groups that choose to collaborate:
How did you come to the decision to collaborate?
What became possible once you made the decision to work together?

Questions for groups that do not collaborate:
Why did you choose not to collaborate?
Was it a conscious choice or did it not occur to you?
What would have been possible if you had decided to work together?

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Household Scavenger Hunt

Description

In this scavenger hunt, remote staff will compete to collect all of the items, snap a photo, and share with the entire team. This fun activity is so quick and easy you can host a new scavenger hunt each day of Customer Service Week.

Materials

None

Directions

This activity can be used over the course of one to five days.

For a five day activity, compile five lists of items to be collected, or use the sample lists below. The lists should include items commonly found in the home along with one or two tricky items.

Distribute the daily list via email or a collaboration platform and ask reps to share photos showing all of the items that they collect.

Photos should be displayed online for all to see. The real fun comes when people realize what they have in common, “We have the same shirt” and what’s different, “Where did you find that rotary phone?”

The winner is the person to find the most items over the course of the scavenger hunt.

Sample

Here are two sets of sample scavenger hunt items:

Day 1
Elephant
Hawaiian style shirt
Seashell
Spice that starts with the letter M
Wedding photo
Day 1
Something in Customer Service Week green
The softest thing you own
Something smaller than a penny
Something with two ears
Flowers or flour
Day 2
Cast iron skillet
Feather
Mercury thermometer
Ribbon
Rotary phone
Day 2
Something in Customer Service Week purple
The last book you read
Something round
Something with four feet
Knight or night
Day 3
House plant
Record or video tape
Salt shaker
Slippers
Train
Day 3
Something in Customer Service Week blue
Something sharp
Something that makes you smile
Something with a tail
Mail or male
Day 4
Polka dots
Postage stamp
Red food
Shell
Six pins
Day 4
Something a little bit country
Something fuzzy
The sweetest thing you have
Something with polka dots
Pear or a pair
Day 5
Ball
Funny socks
Happy Birthday
Pantry item with a 2018 expiration date (or older!)
Rock
Day 5
Something a little bit rock and roll
Something hot
Something older than you are
Something plaid
Son or sun

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Getting to Know You

Description

This popular Customer Service Week activity provides an opportunity for team members to learn a little bit more about each other. When they do, stories are shared, bonds are formed, and cooperation and teamwork soar.

Materials

Getting To Know You Questionnaire
Prizes for daily winners

Directions

A few days before Customer Service Week, ask each team member to complete the questionnaire. Then decide how you will play:

Option 1: Email all of one person’s “answers” to the team and ask them to identify the person described in the email.

Option 2: Email all of the “answers” to a single question, such as “what is your favorite movie?” to the team and ask them to match the movie titles to their coworkers.

As each round of the game is completed, share the names of the winners and the correct answers via email.

Finally, keep in mind that your goal is to have as many winners as possible. After all, the more ways in which team members connect, the stronger the team. So be sure to encourage everyone to play, even if they have to guess, and award prizes to all participants.

Remote Tip

This is a good at-your-desk activity, when played via email, or a collaboration platform.

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Match Up

Description

There are so many variations and so many ways to get to know team members with this simple matching game. If you have remote staff, it can be an effective way to include them in the celebration as well.

The objective is for participants to match photographs to their coworkers. Popular match themes are baby pictures, pets, smiles, and even shoes.

Click to see how Mondial added a high-tech twist to the classic Match Up activity.

Materials

Photos of team members
Prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners
CSW Scratchers for all participants

Directions

Collect photos from participants or snap photos yourself. Then create a display with each photo clearly numbered. People will enjoy gathering and chatting about the photos, so a nice display in a central location is best.

When your staff is assembled, explain that each person should create a numbered list with their answers. Allow two or three days for completion. When the time is up, invite the group for an announcement of the correct matches.

Remote Tip

This is a good at-your-desk activity when played via email or a collaboration platform.
Instead of posting photos in a central location in the office, simply post to a shared online location.
During a team chat read out the correct matches and award prizes.

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Chair Decorating

Description

Chair decorating contests have always been part of Customer Service Week celebrations. The activity allows enough flexibility to fit into any event and participants enjoy the camaraderie and creativity. In addition to decorating chairs many organizations decorate the entire work area as well. Click to see how Health Plan of the Upper Ohio Valley decorated with a holiday theme.

Materials

Each team provides their own materials
Prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners
CSW Scratchers for all participants

Directions

First select a theme for your contest. Some popular themes are “Vacation getaway: Decorate one chair to represent a place where you can kick-back and relax,” “Seasons: Decorate one chair to represent a favorite season,” or if you choose to make this an individual rather than a group activity, “Getting to know you: Anything that represents you, your hobbies, or your passions.”

Divide your group into teams of three to five people.

When your teams are assembled, explain that they will be decorating one of their chairs to reflect the theme that you have selected. Provide the time frame for the activity. Allow two or three days so that team members are able to bring materials and props from home, if they wish.

When the work is completed, invite the group to view all of the chairs. Announce the first, second, and third place winners or allow the group to vote for their favorites.

Remote Tip

Dispersed teams can easily complete this activity using a video conferencing tool such as Zoom, Webex, or Google Hangouts.

Instead of gathering in the office to view decorated chairs, ask reps to take photos of their chairs and share them with the activity leader. Then use screen sharing to view and vote for the team’s favorites.

Discussion

As you view each chair, ask the team to explain their work and the process they used to arrive at the design.

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