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🚀 17 Best Morale Boosters for Remote Employees in 2024

By July 1, 2024 July 15th, 2024

Article Overview: We’re unearthing some fun and effective strategies for boosting team morale and reducing turnover in your remote workforce. Discover how these virtual team-building activities can create more connected, engaged, and loyal remote teams.

It’s no surprise that low employee morale is a major catalyst in the question of “should I stay or should I go?”

After scanning the internet and speaking with some people who’ve left (really great) remote jobs, the common denominator in the attrition of remote employees appears to be rooted in poor workplace morale. 

But the million-dollar question is why are remote employees unhappy in the first place?

Some factors that lead to poor remote employee morale include feeling isolated / not part of a team, lack of appreciation, burnout, no flexible work hours, minimal opportunities for career growth, no clear expectations, lack of work-life boundaries, an already established toxic company culture…just to name a few.
morale boosters for remote employees hero imageNow, there’s your why! But if you can treat the ‘symptoms’ (aka, the ‘whys’), you can cure the main ‘disease,’ and avoid the pitfalls of plummeting morale within your distributed team.

These virtual team-building activities are a great place to start to build team morale remotely! Dig in to find out how boosting employee morale can easily tip the job satisfaction scale in your favor!

🧐 Curious about my top morale boosters for remote employees?

Take a look at some these effective strategies to elevate your team’s spirits!

1. Virtual Talent Show

“From knitting to Navy knotting, a virtual talent show lets your remote employees dazzle their team members with diversity.”

Virtual talent shows offer a fun and engaging outlet for team members to put their unique skills and talents on blast. Whether it’s singing, magic tricks, stand-up comedy, or Tom Cruise-style cocktail prep, this morale booster breaks up the monotony of remote work and fosters a deeper sense of connection among remote team members.

By celebrating each other’s hidden talents, remote workers feel closer and more relatable, and also, appreciated for their skills and stellar showmanship.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Use a video conferencing platform like Zoom or Teams to host the event and encourage everyone to participate to promote a sense of community and appreciation. Or maybe check into a platform like Elevent to work out all the details for you so you can play too, and just be in the moment with your team. PS. Don’t forget to give awards for the winners!

Community member Elle Mhn’s experience:

“I HIGHLY recommend a company talent show (i.e. *Company Name’s* Got Talent) especially if you’re remote and looking for ways to “connect” and partake in team bonding. Our company had one today (I can’t take credit, someone in corporate comms organized it) and it was SO FUN. Pre-recorded submissions were sent in by anyone in the company who wanted to participate, then they compiled them into a video the whole company watched which included the best 10-15 seconds of each of the submissions with the person’s name at the bottom, and had 5 executive “judges” with AGT style Zoom virtual backgrounds. A. It ended up being a cool experience, I was impressed by how well it was received.”

2. Gift of Choice

“Say goodbye to one-size-fits-all employee gifts! “

Gift of Choice

The Gift of Choice from Goody lets employees pick their own perfect gift from a wide selection of brands, ensuring they get something they truly love. Remote employees love this morale booster because it’s not just another generic trinket – it’s tailored to their tastes and preferences, adding something a little extra special to their workday and boosting overall morale.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Once you’ve decided which plan best fits your organization, simply provide your remote employees with access to Goody’s platform where they can shop from a huge range of options and choose the gift (or gift card) they want most.

Jillian Hufnagel'Community member Jillian Hufnagel’s experience:

“We offer an option rather than assume they all want same stuff. Our current selection: t shirts, caps, winter beanies, socks, coffee mugs and stickers. I have found people really appreciate choice.”

 

3. Customized Care Packages

“Brighten up their work day from way over “here” with customized goodies on a more personal level – based on their interests and hobbies!”

SwagMagic-SwagSending customized care packages helps create a sense of connection and brings a little fun to the work-from-home routine. These thoughtful boxes are brimming with products like snacks, self-care items, and office supplies, showing employees you care about them even if you can’t share coffee breaks every day.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Start by collecting information about your remote employees’ preferences, nutritional restrictions, and favorite treats – perfect time for an employee feedback survey.

Then slide over to SwagMagic to find some unique and thoughtful bundles, already curated and ready to ship. Send these care packages directly to their homes and surprise them with some of their new favorite things.

Community member Kathie Dusos experience:

“Our company has provided a few different types of care packages. Within the first two weeks of us being at home they provided us with a small gift snack type package that was sent out to all employees homes.”

 

4. Themed Dress-Up Days

“From funky hats to favorite movie characters, themed dress-up days make video conferences so much more interesting!”

Themed dress-up days are a fun and creative way to boost your team’s morale and add a splash of excitement to the workweek. Everyone dresses up according to different themes – pajama day, superhero day, Bridgerton day, etc. – to break the monotony of remote work, and spark conversation during company meetings.

We love this morale booster because it’s a lighthearted way for everyone to get creative and express themselves while connecting with their remote colleagues.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Pick a theme for each dress-up day and announce it in advance so your employees have time to plan and prepare. Be sure everyone’s cameras are on during your virtual meetings and maybe even offer prizes for the most creative to help incentivize participation.

Community member Kate Wax’s experience:

“I was Pam Beesly 😆 Our theme was fave TV or movie characters.”

 

 

5. Virtual Escape Room

“Crack codes, solve puzzles, and bust out of a virtual escape room as a tech-savvy team!”

Escape Room Jewel Heist

These interactive challenges require critical thinking and problem-solving, making them a great way for remote colleagues to bond and brainstorm. Virtual escape rooms offer a super fun break from the virtual office and routine work tasks, and inject a sense of adventure and excitement into your employees’ workweek.

Not to mention, they’re super engaging and promote a strong sense of teamwork, all while being a thrilling mental workout.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Choose a reputable virtual escape room provider like Outback and schedule a session for your team. Encourage employees to play by creating challenges across different departments and giving the winning team members an extra PTO day to celebrate their victory.

Kelsey TrulloCommunity member Kelsey Trullo’s experience:

“We did a virtual escape room last year which was a hit.”

 

 

6. Online Book Club

“Start an online book club and make your next remote team meeting a real page-turner!”

An online book club gives everyone a chance to dive into great stories, then come together to discuss and exchange unique insights. This shared activity sparks meaningful conversations and helps to make remote work feel a little less isolated.

It also combines relaxation with intellectual engagement, which creates a sense of community and shared purpose, conveniently boosting employee morale.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Choose a book that appeals to the team (at least the majority, as you may not be able to find 100% common ground), set a suggested reading schedule, and create a Slack channel to discuss the material. A virtual book club can help to reduce stress, boost employee engagement, and nurture some really happy employees.

 

7. Game Night

“Challenge accepted! Hosting virtual game nights brings out the camaraderie and competitive spirit in everyone!”

Since the old-fashioned watercooler chats aren’t an option, remote teams will love this chance to unwind and share in some shenanigans together. From game shows and trivia battles to murder mysteries and scavenger hunts, these matches are a welcome break from schedules and spreadsheets.

They’re also a great way to bond with other remote colleagues they might not interact with daily, all in the comfort of their PJs (bonus points for the most creative!). It’s a win-win for building morale and reminding everyone that working remotely doesn’t mean they can’t have some fun together.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Choose from a variety of online games that everyone can enjoy, or (once again) check out all the fantastic options already created for you to choose from by Elevent. Schedule a time for the team to gather on a Zoom call and unleash the friendly competition and uncontrollable giggles!

Real-life example or testimonial:

Community member Lilian Chen’s experience:

“I’m always looking for ways to spice up our virtual meetings, and recently used this set of 15 interactive trivia questions to kick off a meeting as a quick ice breaker!”

 

8. Virtual Happy Hour with Mixologist

“Host a virtual happy hour where a professional Mixologist teaches your entire team how to shake and stir up some delightful ‘dranks.’”

The corner bar is so 2019! Virtual mixology sessions are the ultimate way to unwind, learn something new, and bond with remote colleagues – all while creating some tasty sippers! A pro-Mixologist guides the team through creating fancy cocktails (or mocktails) from the comfort of their own kitchens.

These online shindigs are a guaranteed giggle-fest, a chance to swap recipe tips, and a refreshing break from the daily grind. Cheers to boosting morale, building connections, and mastering the art of the perfect martini!

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Make arrangements for a skilled Mixologist to lead interactive cocktail-making sessions via Zoom and let the fun begin. If you don’t happen to have a qualified Mixologist on speed dial, don’t sweat it – Elevent has you covered! Their professional process allows your remote team members to chill and socialize while learning how to dazzle their friends with new and lively libations.

Community member Deidra Bailey Haass‘s experience:

“My manager, another coworker and I have been having virtual happy hours every Friday afternoon. We usually set them up for an hour, but we have so much fun, they always last way longer. The last one was 3 hours! Lol”

 

9. Pick Me Up Snack Box

“Snack smart, snack happy – because your remote employees deserve special treats too!”

Personal Wellness Journey

A pick-me-up snack box is packed with a variety of delicious treats that provide a tasty break from the workday routine. It shows employees that they’re appreciated and offers a little burst of energy with a side of healthy bliss. Your remote employees will love these boxes because they add a fun and tasty surprise to their day and make them feel cared for, even from a distance.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Get started by curating a selection of tasty treats, or enlist a dedicated service like SnackMagic to do the shopping and ship directly to your employees’ homes. This thoughtful gesture offers a delectable pause in their busy workday and recognition for all their hard work.

Community member Susie Jeyanthan‘s experience:

“Checkout SnackMagic – they are not gift baskets per say, but are a cool option. The employees can select items they’d like based on the budget you’ve set and they do deliver within a time frame. I’ve tried them and the experience is pretty cool!”

 

10. Remote Cooking Classes

“Remote employees can chop, stir, and sauté their way to broader palates and deeper connections – alongside a professional chef – from the comfort of their own kitchens.”

Virtual cooking classes are interactive sessions that provide your remote warriors an opportunity to learn new recipes and sharpen their culinary skills as a team. It’s a great chance to bond and bust it up a little while whipping up delicious dishes to brag about.

This morale booster is super engaging and entertaining, making work-from-home life a dash more fun and flavorful.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Platforms like Elevent offer fantastic remote cooking classes, complete with professional chefs and big personalities to keep your remote employees engaged. With everyone baking and broiling together, a simple cooking class can easily morph into an interactive team-building activity.

 

11. Wellness Wednesdays

“Wednesdays used to be just another hump day, but not anymore!”

With Wellness Wednesdays, remote employees have a dedicated day to recharge and refocus. Whether it’s a virtual yoga session or a healthy potluck recipe swap, these activities help build connections and a sense of community, even across the miles.

It’s a small nudge, reminding everyone that this safe space is here for them each and every week because their mental health, well-being, and work-life balance are important to the company.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Partnering with a reputable wellness challenge app like YuMuuv puts thousands of wellness challenges at your fingertips and takes the pressure off your Executive Wellness Team to come up with fun and engaging ideas all year long.

Community member Christina Dann‘s experience:

“We have a FitBit steps competition (team-based), easily accessible filtered water and company water tumblers, lunch and learns with presenters on health and wellness topics, mapped out walking paths with distance calculated around the office/building, CPR classes, and wellness Wednesdays where you are encouraged to eat outdoors and meditate afterwards.”

 

12. Employee Spotlight

“Remote employee superheroes, stand up!”

Who doesn’t love a little shoutout? Employee Spotlight shines a proverbial light on the amazing things your remote team members are accomplishing. These highlights not only celebrate individual wins but also inspire others by showcasing their colleagues’ hidden skills and outside-the-box thinking.

It’s a virtual high-five of appreciation, reminding everyone that even though they’re miles apart, they’re all an intricate part of something awesome.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Regularly feature your outstanding employees’ achievements in your company-wide communications, or carve out a few minutes for these monumental mentions in your team meetings.

You could even use a service like Bonusly that puts a crazy variety of fantastic employee recognition options at your fingertips. This booster recognizes the individuals and fosters a positive company culture of appreciation and motivation.

 

13. Virtual Pet Parade

“Pets make everything better! Have your employees introduce their BFFs on a video call and share funny stories or unique tricks their pets can do.”

Our pets may honestly be the laziest WFH coworkers and at times, the most inconsiderate and demanding of colleagues. But they’re also our number one emotional supporters and the constant smiles in our often isolated days. A virtual pet parade is a fun way to virtually connect with colleagues and celebrate the other ‘family members’ who keep your employees company during all those video calls.

From ducklings in bandanas to proud pups in bowties, it’s a guaranteed cheese-fest. Plus, it’s their pets’ time to finally rub virtual noses with those other “animals” you spend your days talking to.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Invite team members to showcase their pets during one of your scheduled virtual meetings and encourage them to be as creative as they want to be. This is a super fun activity that fosters friendships and has a tendency to bring remote teams closer.

 

14. Digital Detox Challenge

“Encourage your remote employees to unplug from work and all their screens for a specified period of time.”

Ever feel like your screens are starting to control you? Same! That’s why we’re loving the digital detox challenge! This isn’t about going cold turkey, but more like a friendly nudge to unplug and recharge because sometimes we just gotta disconnect to reconnect.

It’s a chance to rediscover hobbies, catch up with loved ones, or simply enjoy some peace and quiet. And coming back to the table refreshed can increase productivity, so it’s a win for both their well-being and your bottom line!

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Encourage employees to walk away from or put down the screens and engage in offline activities like reading, exercising, or spending time in nature. This morale booster supports your employees’ mental health and well-being, reduces stress, and promotes a better work-life balance.

 

15. Virtual Hobby Swap

“Organize a virtual hobby swap event where employees can swap and share their hobbies and maybe even inspire new passions.”

Calling all creatives, collectors, and craft beer connoisseurs! A virtual hobby swap allows your remote team members to share their passions and hobbies, from painting and gardening to cooking and photography. They’ll have the opportunity to introduce their colleagues to new activities while strengthening the team’s connection from a distance.

It also adds a fun, personal touch to remote working and helps build stronger, more diverse relationships within your teams. What’s better than good times, with good company, and a heaping morale boost?

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Encourage employees to share their hobbies and interests virtually, allowing others to learn new skills or explore different activities from their colleagues. This initiative is sure to encourage group discussions and provides a fun opportunity for employees to connect on topics unrelated to their jobs, fostering an engaging and positive work environment.

 

16. Surprise Appreciation Messages

“Boost employee morale, one out-of-the-blue message at a time!”

Who doesn’t love finding uplifting and encouraging messages in their inbox? These unexpected shout-outs highlight a job well done, a thoughtful idea, or just a positive attitude. It’s a quick reminder that someone noticed their contribution and that a small act of recognition can make a big difference.

They’re like tiny virtual confetti bombs, ensuring that everyone feels seen and appreciated, even miles apart.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Encourage team members to send spontaneous notes of gratitude and recognition to their colleagues via email, Slack, or the communication platform of your choosing. Boost remote team morale and employee engagement by making your distributed teams feel valued and motivated in their roles.

Community member Nichole Svezzese‘s experience:

“Today, was a double day for me. It’s Admin Appreciation Day but also my 1 year anniversary at work. My VP’s and HR spoiled me, today. It’s nice because, sometimes, they forget to say thanks or acknowledge what I do for them. The messages were great because it summed up to be “I don’t know what I’d do without you” and that’s all I really needed.”

 

17. Culture Exchange Day

“Take your remote teams on a global tour by having employees share elements of their different cultures, like generational recipes, holiday traditions, or daily customs.”

Break out the international flags – it’s Culture Exchange Day! Working remotely can be awesome, but sometimes we miss out on learning about our coworkers’. Culture Exchange Days are a fantastic way to bridge the distance and celebrate diversity.

From sharing traditional dishes to showcasing hidden artistic talents through online performances, it’s a chance to broaden horizons and feel connected to colleagues on a more personal level. These events provide transparent pathways to deeper cultural conversations and build a healthier, more vibrant remote team spirit.

✅ How to implement this morale booster for remote employees: Encourage your remote employees to share various aspects of their cultural heritage during virtual meetings. These simple conversations promote diversity, encourage empathy and understanding, and create a more inclusive and cohesive team dynamic.


People Also Ask These Questions About Morale Boosters for Remote Employees

Q: What are some effective morale boosters for remote employees?

  • A: Effective morale boosters for remote teams include virtual team-building activities like online games, virtual happy hours, and collaborative projects. Regular communication, recognition of achievements, and providing opportunities for social interaction also contribute to boosting morale.

Q: How can remote leaders improve team morale?

  • A: Remote leaders can improve team morale by fostering open communication channels, providing regular feedback and recognition, and promoting a positive work culture through virtual team events and wellness initiatives. Offering flexibility in work schedules and supporting professional development also contributes to team morale.

Q: What are virtual team-building activities that boost morale?

  • A: Virtual team-building activities that boost morale include virtual escape rooms, team challenges or competitions, online workshops or training sessions, and themed virtual parties or celebrations. These activities encourage collaboration, teamwork, and strengthen bonds among remote team members.

Q: Why is boosting morale important for remote employees?

  • A: Boosting morale is crucial for remote teams as it enhances employee engagement, productivity, and overall job satisfaction. It helps mitigate feelings of isolation, builds a positive work culture, and improves retention rates by fostering a sense of belonging and well-being among remote employees.

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