50 Summer Team Building Activities to Spark Collaboration and Fun

Posted in Employee Experience

HR leaders are always looking for ways to boost engagement, but it’s important never to underestimate the power of play at work! Take advantage of ‌longer days and warmer temperatures with creative summer employee engagement activities.

Curated activities help your workforce disrupt boring daily ‌routines and get them thinking more creatively. They also help team members build camaraderie and connection both with each other and with the company.

Using the summer to prioritize employee well-being, boost employee belonging,  and foster a sense of community, you cultivate a motivated and productive workforce that will thrive throughout the year.

Embrace these summer employee engagement ideas, and watch as your team’s energy and enthusiasm soar to new heights.

40 Top Summer Team Building Activities to Try This Year

  1. 🍓 Potluck Berry Picnic: Everyone loves summer berries! Invite employees to bring a berry-themed dish or beverage to share at a late summer company picnic. It’s a chance for employees to show off their cooking skills and share personal stories over homemade treats, fostering team connection in a relaxed (and delicious) setting. 

  2. 🎵 A Cappella Singing Group: Harmonize your team dynamics by forming an a cappella group to perform for the rest of the company. Singing together requires coordination and attentiveness to others, mirroring the collaborative efforts needed in workplace projects. This melodious activity enhances team bonding and provides a platform for creative expression.
  3. 💻 No-Programming Hackathon: Organize a hackathon where employees team up to solve problems or create new projects relevant to your business. This intensive event encourages innovative thinking, requires intense collaboration, and results in a satisfying sense of accomplishment when teams present their solutions.
  4. 🚚 Food Truck Fridays: Invite a variety of food trucks to your workplace, offering a diverse selection of cuisines from local vendors — and be sure to invite the ice cream truck by for dessert! This culinary adventure turns lunchtime into an exciting and social event. It’s a delicious way to bring people together, stimulate conversation, and build connections in a casual, festive atmosphere.
  5. 🕵️‍♂️ Murder Mystery Party: Host a murder mystery party where employees can work together to solve a fictional crime. This engaging activity requires critical thinking and effective communication, making it a fun and interactive way to strengthen team bonds and problem-solving skills.
  6. 🤝 Connection Game: Bringing folks together who rarely connect on a personal level? Be sure to try the Connection Game, where people can share their Enboarder Connection Cards, have conversations to discover someone’s secret fun fact, and earn points on a leaderboard for prizes or bragging rights. It’s a fantastic way to help people form bonds that will last!
  7. 🔍 City-Tour Scavenger Hunt: Send teams on a scavenger hunt across your closest city to find landmarks and solve riddles. This adventurous activity encourages teamwork, strategic thinking, and gives employees a chance to explore their city while building stronger relationships with their colleagues.
  8.  🏎️ Go-Kart Racing: Fuel your team’s competitive spirit with a go-kart racing event. Racing in teams can teach important lessons about strategy and adaptability, while also providing a thrilling experience that will be talked about long after the helmets come off.
  9. 🏃‍♂️ Charity Run: Participate in a charity run or walk to support a good cause while promoting health and teamwork. Training and running together strengthens team spirit and gives everyone a shared goal to cheer for, enhancing interpersonal relationships within the team.
  10.  🥧 Pie Baking Contest: Roll up your sleeves for a pie-making contest that blends creativity with a dash of competitive spirit. Teams work together to concoct the most delicious pie, encouraging collaboration and the sharing of baking tips and personal preferences. It’s a sweet way to build teamwork and enjoy the fruits of your labor together.
  11. ⚾ Ball Game: Organize a trip to watch a professional or minor league sports game or set up a friendly match among employees. This classic pastime fosters team loyalty and spirit, making it a perfect backdrop for casual bonding and building lasting memories.
  12.  🌍 Community Cleanup: Volunteer for a community cleanup day to enhance local spaces. This altruistic activity not only promotes environmental responsibility but also instills a sense of collective achievement and community care among team members.
  13. 🏆 Lawn Games Tournament: Host a mini-sports tournament with classic games like badminton, croquet, cornhole, bocce, mini-golf, horseshoes, or ultimate frisbee. This event encourages healthy competition, accessible fitness, and teamwork, providing a dynamic way to engage employees outside of the work environment.
  14. 👩🏽‍🎨 Creative Workshops: Arrange creative workshops such as painting, pottery, or jewelry-making. These workshops are therapeutic and allow employees to express themselves creatively while forming deeper connections with colleagues who share similar interests.
  15. 🏖️ Beach Day: Sponsor a day at the beach or at a nearby lake or river engaging in activities like sandcastle building or beach volleyball. It’s a relaxed setting for employees to mingle and enjoy nature, promoting well-being and strengthening informal bonds. Maybe top it off with a BBQ and an evening bonfire!
  16.  🥾 Group Hike: Organize a group hike in a beautiful nature reserve or park. Hiking as a team can be both challenging and rewarding, offering ample opportunities for helping each other and sharing personal insights along the way.
  17. 🎨 Chalk Art Festival: Host a chalk art day where employees can draw and write messages on the sidewalks or a parking lot. This creative outlet is perfect for showcasing artistic skills and adds a splash of color and personal expression to the workplace environment.
  18. 🎬 Outdoor Movie Night: Set up an outdoor cinema evening with popcorn and blankets. Watching a movie under the stars offers a magical experience for colleagues and maybe their families! Whether it’s a one-off or a weekly series, it’s a great way to unwind and create a sense of togetherness among the team.
  19. 🎶 Concert on the Lawn: Host a concert with local bands or even talented employees, or rent space at a local concert on the lawn venue. This kind of evening enhances cultural appreciation and provides a lively environment for employees to mingle and unwind. It’s a great way to celebrate local arts and encourage a sense of community within the team.
  20. 🧁 Cupcake Throwdown: Challenge teams to a cupcake decorating contest. This sweet competition involves creativity and teamwork, much like collaborative projects at work. It’s a fun, tasty way to engage employees and encourage a light-hearted competition within the office.
  21. 🍷🍺 Wine or Beer Tasting: Visit a local vineyard or brewery, or organize a tasting event in the office. Learning about different wines or brews can enhance cultural appreciation and foster a sophisticated team environment. This activity is also excellent for networking and relaxing with colleagues in a chill setting.
  22.  🌟 Your Organization’s Got Talent!: Organize a company-wide talent show where employees can showcase their unique skills and hobbies. This fun event allows individuals to express themselves outside their professional roles, celebrating diversity and talents that may not be visible in the workplace.
  23. 🔐 Escape Room: Participate in an escape room challenge where teams solve puzzles to ‘escape’ a locked room. This activity requires critical thinking and cohesive teamwork, making it an excellent metaphor for workplace problem-solving and collaboration.
  24. 🖌️ Calling All Crafters Fair: Host a fair where employees can display and sell their handmade crafts. This celebrates personal hobbies and talents, encouraging a culture of sharing and appreciation. It’s also a chance for team members to support each other’s passions and learn more about their interests outside of work.
  25. 🎤 Karaoke Night: People sometimes groan when you say karaoke but they always get up on stage, laugh and talk about it for years! Organize a karaoke night where employees can sing their favorite songs. This fun, informal event allows team members to let loose and enjoy a less formal side of their colleagues, fostering camaraderie and light-hearted interactions.
  26. ⛺ Camping Trip: Plan a company camping trip, requiring collaboration in setting up camp and sharing tasks. This back-to-nature experience is analogous to project management and problem-solving in work settings, making it a valuable team-building exercise.
  27. 🏛️ History Walk: Take a guided tour to learn about local history. This educational activity can increase team knowledge and appreciation of the community, enhancing personal connections and providing a shared learning experience.
  28. 🌶 Chili Cook-Off: Spice things up with a chili cook-off where teams compete to see who can create the best chili using secret ingredients or traditional recipes. This event heats up team spirit and sparks friendly competition, allowing team members to bond over flavor profiles and cooking strategies.
  29. 💃 Dancing Lessons: Take the team out for line dancing or salsa dancing lessons. This activity is not only fun but serves as a great metaphor for teamwork and coordination in the workplace. It’s also an excellent way for employees to unwind and enjoy a night out together.
  30. 🎯. Laser Tag or Paint Ball: Organize a laser tag or paint ball outing. This game encourages strategic planning and quick decision-making, akin to dynamic work environments. It’s a thrilling way to foster team spirit and strategic collaboration among colleagues.
  31. 🌞 Summer Shutdowns: Instituting extra summer holidays, where the company closes for a few days or extends weekend breaks with Fridays off, can significantly boost employee morale and actually increase total productivity. These breaks allow employees to recharge, reducing burnout and promoting a healthier work-life balance. Demonstrating a commitment to employee well-being through structured time off reinforces a culture of care and respect, enhancing employee satisfaction and retention.
  32. 📚 Summer Book Club: A summer book club encourages employees to engage intellectually with topics relevant to personal development and professional growth. This activity not only supports continuous learning but also fosters a sense of community as employees share insights and diverse perspectives. Book clubs can also serve as informal mentoring spaces where employees across different levels can connect and exchange ideas in a non-hierarchical setting.
  33. 🎲 Board Game Night or Marathon: Gather a variety of board games for a weekly summer game night or one-day game-day marathon. This provides a casual environment for strategic thinking and problem-solving, mirroring collaborative work scenarios. It’s also a fantastic way to explore different team dynamics and encourage light-hearted competition.
  34. 🍕 DIY Cooking Party: Host a make-your-own night where team members can create a fun dish together. Make dumplings, pasta, pizza, or whatever you dream up! A culinary collaboration encourages creativity and teamwork, plus everyone gets to enjoy the delicious results of their efforts.
  35. 📸 Photography Walk: Arrange a photography walk through a scenic part of town or a nearby natural area. This activity encourages observational skills and creative expression, offering a refreshing break from the routine while fostering a different type of visual communication.
  36. 🏋️‍♀️ Fitness Challenge: Organize a fitness challenge with activities suitable for all levels. This promotes health and wellness while encouraging supportive teamwork as colleagues motivate each other to reach personal and group fitness goals. 
  37. 🖼️ Gallery Visit: Plan a trip to a local museum or art gallery. Exploring art together can spark creativity and inspire discussions that enhance team bonding, providing a cultural and intellectual outing that enriches team dynamics.
  38. 🌿 Victory Garden: Volunteer for a day of gardening at a community park or set up a garden at your workplace. This earthy activity encourages teamwork and environmental responsibility, plus it’s a relaxing way to cultivate a greener, more beautiful community space.
  39. 🍦 Ice Cream Social: Organize an ice cream social where team members can mix and match flavors and toppings. It’s a sweet treat that allows employees to mingle and share a fun, informal moment together, perfect for hot summer days.
  40. 🫶 Company Volunteer Days: Organizing company-wide volunteer days can significantly enhance team cohesion and employee engagement. These activities allow team collaboration outside of usual work tasks, fostering a shared sense of purpose as employees contribute positively to the community. Volunteering also provides employees with the opportunity to develop leadership skills and empathy, enriching their professional and personal growth.
summer employee engagement activities

10  Summer Team Building Exercises for Virtual Teams

 Got a hybrid or remote team? We have ideas for you, too!

  1. 🗝️ Virtual Escape Room: Engage your team in a virtual escape room challenge where they must solve puzzles and riddles together to ‘escape’ within a set time. This activity enhances problem-solving skills and fosters collaboration under pressure.
  2. 🍳 Online Cooking Class: Host a live cooking class where a chef guides your team through a recipe. This activity not only teaches a new skill but also allows team members to share a meal together, albeit virtually, which promotes casual interaction and bonding.
  3. 🎥 Virtual Movie Night: Organize a movie night using a streaming service that allows group watch parties. Discuss the movie afterward to share different perspectives, which helps deepen interpersonal connections.
  4. 🧠 Online Quiz or Game Night: Set up a trivia or online game night with questions ranging from general knowledge to funny personal facts about team members. This is a fun way to learn more about each other and stimulate friendly competition.
  5. 🎤 Remote Talent Show: Have a virtual talent show where team members can showcase their non-work related talents. This encourages self-expression and appreciation for diverse skills and hobbies, enhancing team spirit.
  6. 🎨 Digital Art Collaboration: Use a collaborative art app where team members can contribute to a digital canvas. This not only fosters creativity but also results in a collective piece of art that symbolizes teamwork.
  7. ☕ Virtual Coffee Breaks: Schedule regular virtual coffee breaks where team members can join a video call to chat about non-work-related topics. This mimics the watercooler conversations of the office environment and keeps the team connected informally.
  8. 🧘 Mindfulness Sessions: Organize guided virtual mindfulness or meditation sessions to promote mental health and reduce stress. It’s a way to show care for the team’s well-being and encourages a moment of calm collaboration.
  9. 💻 Interactive Webinars: Host webinars with interactive elements such as live polls or Q&A sessions. Choose topics of interest or professional development to keep your team engaged and learning together. You can even ask employees to share their skills and knowledge — conducting sessions to teach peers about their favorite hobby or area of expertise!
  10. 🌍 Virtual World Tours: Take your team on a virtual tour of a famous museum or historic site. Many institutions offer online tours, providing a cultural and educational experience that can spark discussions and bring your team together in new ways.

Implementing summer employee engagement ideas can have a transformative impact on your workplace dynamics and employee satisfaction. By infusing the summer months with activities that promote team-building, wellness, and a sense of fun, you can create a vibrant and positive work environment that your employees will love.

Be sure to use an employee engagement platform, such as Enboarder’s employee  onboarding software to keep your team informed and engaged in the events you plan. It’s a perfect way to connect employees with your company and each other.

Seize the opportunity to implement summer employee engagement activities and bring some joy into your team members’ lives.

Want to learn more about best practices around creating a culture of belonging? Check out how T-Mobile is using Enboarder to elevate employee experience and build an engaged culture from the moment new employees are hired!

Become an Enboarder insider!