We all know the benefits of staff away days, but how would we go about planning a virtual staff away day in the current climate? Arguably, it’s more important now than ever before to keep team morale boosted and keep everyone feeling like they’re part of something. We can transfer the same benefits, but what can you actually do for a virtual staff away day?
Online Escape Rooms
Our first suggestion for your virtual staff away day is an escape room. Encouraging teamwork whilst also having to use your brain, escape rooms is a great way to bond and connect with your team. How does it work? We suggest you split unto teams of 3-6, and each jump on a separate zoom call with your team. Try and start everyone at the same time, say 11:00 am on the dot, and see who gets out the quickest.
We recommend The Panic Rooms, they have a wide range of online games designed to last for 1hr!
Drag Aerobics Class/Pub Quiz
It’s probably not even worth going any further, is it? This is just the ultimate virtual staff away day. One of our favourite Drag Queens hosts live aerobics classes every Wednesday at 7:30 pm on her Instagram. We slid into her DMs to see if she would be interested in hosting aerobics classes for virtual staff away days, and of course, she said yes. Prepare for all the sass and a lot of movement. If you’re spending this lockdown in a less active way, there’s always a pub quiz, which we can also arrange for you.
Something we all needs in times like this is laughter. Luckily, we’re not falling short, with plenty of live streams becoming available from various comedy clubs across the country. Admittedly, we’ve not done this yet, so we can’t comment on how awkward stand up is with no one in the room to laugh… If you’re not up for that and watching back some re-runs of previous live performances is more up your street, check out Next Up. Next Up has been dubbed “Edinburgh Fringe in your pocket”. What more could you want?
We’re seeing more and more restaurants pivot their services to profit at home cooking kits. Patty and Bun, famous for offering one of London’s best burgers, are selling make your own kits inside the M25 and they look dreamy. Meanwhile, Olives Direct will post you a tidy little box that will fit through your letterbox containing everything you need to make a delicious pizza. Set up zoom in your kitchen and cook together, or if that feels like too much chaos, maybe just eat together.
Every Thursday at 7pm, The National Theatre is live-streaming one of their plays on their YouTube channel. You can catch some brilliant shows such as One Man Two Guvnors with James Corden, Jane Eyre, Treasure Island and Twelfth Night. All from the comfort of your own home! Either leave Zoom on while you’re watching, mute it, or just check in with your colleagues during pre-show drinks, the interval, and after.
Life Drawing Class
ATY Are absolutely nailing the online market right now. Every Monday from 7-9 pm they are live streaming life drawing classes for the bargain price of £5. Split into two sections, the first half of the class is shorter 2-5 minute poses followed by 10 minute poses just to get you started. By the end of the class, you’ll be working on 20-minute poses and creating works of art (or scribbles if all you have at home are crayons). This class isn’t about the kit you have available if you’ve got the back of a receipt and something to draw with you’re in.
Netflix Watch Parties
Ever been watching someone on TV but you’re two minutes behind everyone else, so you’re getting “OMG” texts before anything has even happened? Well, Netflix Party puts an end to this. It allows you to watch one of its many TV shows or Films in sync with other people. This is only available on Chrome, so you’ll have to use your laptop, but kick back and watch a great film, cry at a heartfelt series or binge on the latest shocking documentary (Tiger King).
Check out YouTube’s live streams
There is SO MUCH on YouTube’s live streaming page at the moment. If you go to www.youtube.com, down the left-hand side under “More From YouTube” you will see a section called “Live”. Click that, and you’ll find some absolute gems that are happening now as well as in the future. At the time of writing, the ones we’ve pulled out are:
- Biffy Clyro: StayHome and jam with me
- Jeremy Clakson’s Pub Quiz
- Chelsea vs Everton FA Cup 2008/9 Live Match
- How to make vegan crispy duck pancakes
Obviously this is by no means ideal, and will never replace face to face interaction, but we’ve got to work with what we have in times like this. And the great thing is, there are still options! And plenty of them! We hope this has given you a good idea of just how many options there are for a virtual staff away day, but if you want a bit of a hand organising everything, give us a shout.