Foster the Human Connection in Remote Work — 5 Small Ideas

Lisa Mo Wagner
3 min readMar 16, 2020

Are you working from home yet? If Covid-19 has taught us something it is that most jobs can be done remotely. I love the option of remote work and there’s a ton of videos and articles out there that can help you improve productivity, especially if you’re new to remote work and virtual meetings. One thing I haven’t seen a lot about is the human factor.

I like connecting with my co-workers on a more personal level, I like going to meetups and conferences to learn about the industry and I like meeting new people. How do we do that in times of corona and self-quarantine?

Here are 5 small things you can do to connect with humans around you. Even though this should go without saying, always (!) turn on your camera in a video chat, no matter if it is work or fun.

⛸ Ice Breakers In Meetings

We start every team meeting with a little ice breaker to get everyone’s mind off of other things, engage with the group, get comfortable with the tool(s) and learn something interesting about each other.

We use Mural as an online whiteboard and have a dedicated area for the ice breaker, we have used some of these prompts in the past and had a ton of fun:

  1. Drop a pic/emoji here to describe a place you’d love to visit.
  2. Drop a pic/emoji here to describe something unexpected about yourself.
  3. Drop only emojis here to describe your favourite tv show.
Sample from our team meeting (missed a few people due to sick leave)

Find 300 ideas for ice breaker questions here.

🎲 Play a Game in Slack

That last prompt we have used as an ice breaker was so fun, that we started a thread in Slack: Since it was so much fun in the team meeting, guess the movie 👨 👩 🛳 🏔 🌊

Two simple rules: Emojis only and whoever guesses first can do the next one.

Here are some that popped up in our thread, can you guess all of them?

🦈 🌪

🔍 🐠

👽 🚲 🌕

Feel free to join this Twitter thread and play with us there.

☕️ Virtual Coffee (Or Tea)

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Lisa Mo Wagner

Product strategist, decision facilitator, team enabler, problem solver, design sprinter, agile enthusiast, intersectional feminist.