Unusual Team Building Activities (10 Options)

Written by:
Collin Waldoch
October 24, 2021

Unusual team building activities are the perfect way to spice up the workweek and drive employee engagement and retention. After scouring the internet, we’ve gathered 10 unique team building activities to intrigue your workforce.

Unusual Team Building Activities - Why Do They Matter?

Team building activities encourage communication through casual interactions and some good old-fashioned fun. The best team building activities attract the interest of even the most reluctant participants. If previous activities have failed to strike a chord with co-workers, it might be time to explore quirkier team building activities to utilize novelty.

A Salesforce study found employees and 97% of leadership blame a lack of team alignment for failures in projects. To resolve conflicts between co-workers and ensure everyone is on the same page, utilize team building activities to practice conflict resolution and cross-team communication. With practice, teams can learn to resolve conflicts effectively.

What are our favorite quirky team building activities?

1 - Water Cooler Trivia

Water Cooler Trivia is the go-to platform for fun among organizations attempting to improve workforce alignment through zany team building activities. The unconventional trivia quizzes, handwritten by the best trivia nerds in the business, can be sent to your inbox weekly. While much of the platform is automated, you can customize the quiz length, difficulty, and categories. 

If you don’t have time to source outlandish trivia, Water Cooler Trivia can do the heavy lifting for you. We know how to craft bizarre trivia questions that will get everyone in the office talking and scratching their heads. To build team culture and promote good cross-team communication, you should take Water Cooler Trivia for a test drive and measure its effects on your team.

Just three big brains, doing their thing.

2 - Circus Classes

If you can dedicate an afternoon to team building, you could book circus classes. Depending on your location, there may be classes covering acrobatics, trampolining, trapeze, silks, juggling, tightwire, and unicycling. Getting your co-workers out of their office chairs and engrossed in circus activities could be what is needed to revitalize employee engagement.

3 - Blindfolded Food Tasting

Blindfolded food tasting is a wacky lunchtime activity that’s almost guaranteed to generate some laughter. To make this adventurous, you can pick exotic foods to tantalize the taste buds of your co-workers. You can take blindfolded food tasting in many different directions. If you’re going to the trouble of buying food for the activity, you might as well pick some unusual delights.

Does coffee count as food tasting? Asking for a friend

4 - Go-Karting

Does your team feel the need for speed? Go-karting is an exhilarating activity team members will talk about for years to come. Co-workers can go head-to-head and power their way around a local racing track. Many go-karting venues accommodate corporate team building events. It shouldn’t be too difficult for you to find a venue that will host your team for an afternoon.

5 - Water Sports

If you’re looking for outdoor team building games, it doesn’t get more exciting than water sports. You just need to find the right venue with suitable water sports instructors. From waterskiing to kayaking, these activities will thrust co-workers into challenging situations and ignite plenty of conversations. It’s unique experiences like these that will elevate the team culture.

6 - Host A Summer Barbecue

While this isn’t necessarily a team building activity, it’s an opportunity for you to develop the team culture further. This type of social event gets co-workers communicating in a casual setting without the intensity of the office environment. Working relationships will inevitably strengthen as team members chat over barbecue food and soak up those sun rays. Okay, we’ll confess, it’s not all that unusual.

No BBQ is complete without balloons, pineapples, and mysteriously-eyebrowed blue brains.,

7 - Sumo Wrestling

As far as unusual team building activities go, it doesn’t get more quirky than sumo wrestling. It’s relatively inexpensive to purchase a set of inflatable fat suits for sumo wrestling. You can set up this activity either indoors or outdoors, depending on where you find sufficient space. Spectators can have just as much fun as participants letting their inner wrestler emerge. Don’t forget the liability waivers though...

8 - Cooking Classes

Ready, steady, cook! In pairs or small groups, team members can take cooking classes in foreign cuisine, preparing various dishes from different parts of the world. Teams based in major cities can easily access facilities for cooking classes with professional chefs. Cooking classes will take co-workers outside their comfort zones and put their culinary skills to the test.

9 - Paintballing

Paintballing can encourage team members to work together strategically to complete objectives in the face of conflict. It’s the ultimate team building activity for those struggling with cross-team communication in a workplace environment. With your team in survival mode, co-workers will have no choice but to work together and develop a winning strategy.

10 - Messy Twister

This unusual team building idea puts a cheeky twist on a classic game. Unlike a regular game of Twister, you can only play this version outside. The only difference between Messy Twister and the classic game is the presence of fresh paint on each dot. If your team isn’t afraid to get their hands dirty, this is a great team building activity. Just encourage them to wear some old clothes.

What is the best team building activity?

Sure, we might be a little biased, but we believe Water Cooler Trivia is the best team building activity on the market. Okay, we’re a lot biased. If you’re trying to boost employee engagement and build a positive team culture, you should invest in tools like Water Cooler Trivia to turn your vision into reality. Our platform comes with all you need to spark light-hearted conversations and raise team morale.

Last but not least, Water Cooler Trivia offers a free four-week trial. Get started with a four-week trial of Water Cooler Trivia today!