Tips for team events to help bring employees back to the office

Gina Schumacher

The introduction of hybrid working models has revolutionized the working landscape, but not all employees are equally enthusiastic about the idea of returning to the office. This article offers managers who want to encourage hybrid working some tried and tested strategies to boost the office attendance of their workforce.

Team events during working hours to increase office presence

Co-workers share a pizza in the office as an after-work event.

1. Themed events

Themed events such as dress-up parties for Halloween or Pancake Day bring fun and a positive dynamic to everyday office life. Such events offer a welcome break from the daily work routine and promote a relaxed, easy-going working atmosphere. By celebrating festivities together, employees can show their creative side, get to know each other better, and build a friendly atmosphere. The positive mood created by themed events can have a long-term effect on employee motivation and general well-being within the company.

2. Lunch for all

The introduction of free lunches for all employees makes a significant contribution to strengthening employee loyalty. This initiative not only sends a strong signal of appreciation and care from the company but also promotes a sense of community and teamwork through regular meals together. At the same time, it raises the company's profile as an attractive employer, as it creates a pleasant working environment and looks after the well-being of its staff.

3. Health events

Health events play a crucial role in promoting employee well-being. Whether it's back training, a vaccination campaign, a company run for charity, or relaxing massages, such initiatives underline the company's appreciation for the health and well-being of its workforce. This, in turn, can contribute to increased employee satisfaction and retention.

4. Drawn Lunch Dates 

Drawn Lunch Dates are informal meetings where employees are randomly selected to have lunch together. The idea behind this activity is to create an informal environment where team members who may not often interact with each other have the opportunity to get to know each other better. Drawing lots for lunch dates avoids always meeting the same people and creates new connections within the team. This activity encourages informal interaction, strengthens team spirit, and promotes collaboration.

After-work events to increase office presence

Employees have a team event in the office.

After a productive day at work, after-work events offer a welcome change of pace and create a pleasant opportunity for employees to relax and network in an informal setting. These events not only help to reduce stress but also promote interpersonal relationships within the team:

1. Opening the barbecue season

The joint barbecue not only marks the start of the barbecue season but also creates a relaxed and informal atmosphere for employees. The choice between the company premises and the nearest park depends on the team's preferences and capabilities. Regardless of where it takes place, this casual gathering allows the workforce to relax, socialize, and have a relaxed time together outside of the usual work environment. This not only promotes team spirit but also helps employees feel connected to their workplace and colleagues.

2. Mulled wine drink

The joint mulled wine drink during the cold season not only brings a cozy atmosphere to the office but also provides an excellent opportunity for informal conversations among colleagues. Whether organized in the office itself or at a stall at the Christmas market, this activity creates a warm and welcoming environment. In addition, a Secret Santa activity could be organized in parallel between colleagues. This not only promotes fun and a festive atmosphere but also strengthens interpersonal relationships within the team.

3. Movie night

A shared movie night is a great opportunity to chat about common interests and discover new topics of conversation. By sharing movie experiences, employees can build personal connections and explore their common tastes. This after-work event not only promotes a relaxed and casual atmosphere within the team but also creates a common ground for future conversations.

4. Games evening

Another after-work event could be a games evening after work. This is a fun opportunity for employees to relax playfully and strengthen their team skills. Games promote team spirit by creating a common challenge and strengthening cooperation among colleagues. The informal nature of a games evening creates a relaxed atmosphere in which employees can get to know each other better in a fun way.

5. Tasting

A tasting of different types of beer or cheese, for example, provides a relaxed and informal environment in which employees can share their taste preferences. The variety of products tasted creates a topic of conversation and offers a pleasant opportunity to get to know each other better in an informal atmosphere. Of course, alcohol consumption should be kept in moderation at such events to ensure a pleasant and safe atmosphere.

Conclusion: Can team events help to bring employees back to the office?

Bringing employees back to the office requires not only smart strategies but also an understanding of the individual needs of them. Through a varied mix of team events and interpersonal encounters, managers can create a positive atmosphere and emphasize the benefits of a mix of remote office and office presence. So yes, team events can be of great help in bringing employees back to the office.

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Markus Merkle
Sales manager