Top Slack Apps and Ideas for Team Building

As enterprises evolved in the wake of disruptions caused by the pandemic, remote or hybrid work has become the standard. A study by Microsoft found that 66% of companies plan to move to remote or hybrid work options soon if they haven’t already. And if that’s the plan for your business, this list of the best Slack apps for team building will become essential.

While remote work has many benefits, the lack of face-to-face interactions among colleagues can severely impact team building and bonding.

Slack, as a workplace communications tool, and with some of the apps and ideas below, you can supercharge team building.

Essential Team Building Ideas Using Slack

• Create Interest-based Slack Channels
Many Slack users create specific channels for different business purposes. For instance, you might have a channel for marketing, another for sales, another for engineering, etc. 

Consider creating channels that aren’t about work but instead welcome teammates to share personal thoughts. You can build interest-based channels around anything your team members like to talk about — popular TV shows, video games, vacation plans, food recipes, music, etc. It helps build togetherness and lets remote teams get to know each other better.

It’s important to note that your newly created Slack channels should remain dedicated to their purpose. If the conversation gets off-track on one channel, you can redirect it to another more appropriate channel.

A screenshot showing multiple Slack channels on the left sidebar.

• Celebrate Team Achievements on Slack
One great way to motivate your remote team is to recognize and celebrate their accomplishments on platforms. 

You can use Slack to let the whole team know when an individual or a department achieves a goal or does something worth sharing. One company we spoke to even put a special halo for the day on the employee’s profile avatar in Slack as a way to recognize their achievement for the day or week.

• Use Conversation Starters 
What’s the next trip you’re planning? What’s your favorite snack? Which Christmas activity are you looking forward to? Who’s catching this weekend’s NFL action? Who can play the guitar?    

Prompts like these on popular topics can help get conversations started on Slack, and provide a virtual version of casual conversations in a physical office. Post conversation starters on a dedicated Slack channel, and make sure you chime in to get the discussion going. 

A good tip is to keep the prompts to one a day. Otherwise, your team may be bombarded by questions, and they will end up struggling with how to manage Slack notifications to protect focus time.

Top Slack Apps for Team Building

Slack is open to integrations with countless third-party apps that serve various purposes. From apps that handle automatic status updates to ones that share company achievements, here’s a list of some of the best Slack apps we found for team building:

Simple Poll

This app is a simple way to get opinions from your team. Simple Poll allows you to create a poll within a Slack channel or group so that you can quickly hear what your team members think. You can use a poll to decide the company’s direction or for something as simple as what to have for lunch. Answers can also be posted anonymously so that your team members can feel free to let you know what they have in mind.

A screenshot of a poll created in Slack using Simple Poll.

Giphy

Gifs can be a great way to share a joke or communicate something quickly with your team members. Giphy lets your team share gifs on channels or as direct messages. Type in a word or phrase you have in mind, allow the software to find a suitable gif and share it with your team.

Donut

The app helps teammates build meaningful relationships in the remote workspace. Donut automatically pairs teams up for virtual icebreakers, such as a quick coffee break or a weekly lunch, helping them bond better.

Lunch Train

Lunch is a big highlight of a typical workday for many of us. This unique app allows team members to join in and make plans for lunch without cluttering other channels. Lunch Train can be a great icebreaker at work.

Trivia

Focus time while working is essential, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t allocate time for your team members to have some fun. Trivia creates games and quizzes on Slack to let your team take a refreshing pause before returning to work.

A screenshot of the Trivia app sharing a quiz on Slack.

HeyTaco

Recognition at work is an excellent way for team members to stay motivated. HeyTaco has become one of the best Slack apps for team building by allowing coworkers to award one another virtual tacos to recognize their good work. Each team member is given five tacos a day that they can award to coworkers, and the tacos can be redeemed for prizes. It’s a fun way to build togetherness and keep your team happy at work.

Pulse

Pulse, although a tool to automatically update your Slack status, also serves as a way to drive more empathy and bonding in your team. Teammates can not only share availability but the music they’re listening to, weather updates, weekend plans, etc. It’s an excellent passive way for team building.

Last Words: Smells Like Team Spirit!

Team building can be a challenge in any work environment, particularly when distributed. When your teammates work remotely and don’t engage with one another beyond work-related matters, the remote workplace can start to feel more isolated and less fun. 

That’s why these Slack ideas and apps for team building are essential. They can help you bring your team together and make them feel like a close-knit family. A team that bonds well stays motivated, resulting in higher productivity.