15 Unusual Office Team Building Activities in NYC

May 13, 2022

What Are Office Team Building Activities?

At Avital: we create innovative and fun office team building activities that foster social connection through food + drink! Our team has worked long and hard to adapt to the social awkwardness COVID has left in its wake, while also keeping our activities fresh and unique.

Each of the experiences below are intended to be done in the office with the help of delivered kits and/or a virtual guide. These additions make organization and operation a breeze!

Why are Office Team Building Activities Important?

As of 2021, about 64% of companies have planned for a physical return to work. On the one hand, the return to the office looms large for too many employees who have gotten used to the ease and comfort of home. On the other hand, there is an entire web of office workers who are hungry for a return to work; eager to re-establish their office space, and take lunch breaks with their beloved coworkers. And then there are all of the new hires who have never even been to the office!

It is undeniable that company morale relies on the smooth transition of all of these employees back into their shared work environment. And what better way to instill a fun and relaxed ambiance than with a quirky office team building activity to get everyone back to a comfortable groove?

man doing water tasting during unusual office team building

1. Discover How Much There is to Learn About Your Palette with a Water Tasting!

A Water Tasting–not dissimilar from a wine tasting–is perhaps a little unheard of, though significantly more appropriate for the office! In this exciting new activity Avital: has created, we are eager to execute an office team building activity that teaches each individual so much about water and by extension, the human palate.

  • Time: 60 minutes (to accommodate the work day)
  • What’s included: 5 Premium Waters in 750ml Glass Bottles (2 Still, 2 Sparkling), 2 Delicious Food Pairings, 1 Water Test Strip
  • What We Do: Through a progressive series of tastings, all would be invited to explore both sensations on their palate, and more about their colleagues who are along for the ride! We have a certified sommelier lead the event so that everyone can sit back, eat, drink, and enjoy!

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2. Who’s Up for a Tongue Twister?

Sometimes big words can tie our tongues into a knot, other times it is a taste–typically a sour one!–that can twist our tongues all around! In the Avital: Tongue Twister Tasting, we want to invite you to an office team building activity that will not only bring everyone closer, but also take your team on an experience so delightful and delicious, no one will be able to hold back!

  • Time: 45 minutes (to accommodate the workday!)
  • What’s included: Every participant will receive a box equipped with miracle berries, 2 citrus fruits, jellybeans, kombucha, and 2 sour candies to punch your tongue with the ultimate sensation!
  • What We Do: Through progressive “snackery”, we guide team members through games and exercises that will help them learn all about flavors! This is one of the many office team building activities where employees are given an opportunity to talk with one another and share what they have learned–and it is sure to get some laughs and conversation flowing.

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colleagues during improv office team building

3. Improv Classes for the Office!

Why not do improv at work? And why wouldn’t it be considered one of the best office team building activities a company could offer? Through On Deck Workshops, colleagues are able to build trust, strengthen communication, and laugh!

  • Time: Depends on request
  • What’s Included: Workshops of various durations are offered (one session, Quarter-length sessions, etc.). Seasoned improv instructors can lead these workshops IRL or virtually!
  • What They Do: An improv teacher will work with the company’s various teams to play improv games and facilitate other improv games to engage teammates to have fun and play!

4. What About a Murder Mystery Party?

If you or your teammates enjoyed the board game Clue, there is no way that you will not love these pre-made 30 Minute Murder Mystery Party Kits! The company Playing with Murder has made numerous interactive mystery games, all you need is a group of people ready to take on the characters. It’s one of the most perfect office team building activities you could do with a team of up to 100 people!

  • Time: 30 minutes
  • What’s Included: A hosting guide (aka: directions) on how to play, character sheets, an introductory handout that can be sent to employees on advance detailing what to expect, name cards, and invitations that can be delivered prior to playing.
  • What They Do: This 30 minute themed game is facilitated by the company themselves, who assign every employee a character. From there, everyone receives a booklet tailored to their character to solve a specific themed murder, such as Secret Agent, There Might Be No Christmas, and The Inquisition of Vampires, to name a few!

5. Want to Build Bikes for a good cause?

Companies are used to building things, whether it be physical, ideological, or both. In this Build Bike Donation activity, employees are tasked to work together to build bikes to be donated! This event can include as few as 30 people and up to 1,000+, so it’s perfect for any sized office!

  • Time: 1.5-2.5 hours
  • What’s Included: Bicycle parts, helmets and locks, the team building program, prep, production coordination and all materials, program design, a professional lead facilitator and staffing.
  • What They Do: After an icebreaker, teams will be split up into groups of 10 and given an iPad with detailed instructions on how to get building! Through challenges, videos, and safety inspections, colleagues will build bikes to be donated to children in need.

6. Transform Your Veggies with Pickling and Carving

A collection of hands-on activities to play with your produce, like pickling and carving! Create your own pickling spice blend and learn how to turn a carrot into a  work of art. A healthy, wellness forward experiences and friendly to all dietary restrictions. 

  • Time: 30, 60, or 90 minutes
  • What’s included: Expert Avital: Host (Optional), All Ingredients + Tools, 2 Take-Home Jars of Pickles
  • What We Do: Hands-On Pickling with Custom Spice Blend, Make Veggie Sculptures, Team Building Activities

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travel-to-paris-virtually-with-your-office-team-building7. Travel to Paris Virtually!

  • Time: 60-90 minutes
  • What’s included: This service is incredibly flexible but generally includes a virtual event, education on French culture, vocabulary, and trivia, games to test that knowledge, and the option to add one a live stream from the streets of Paris, an add on Parisian picnic box, and even a cooking class with a sassy Parisian!
  • What We Do: The virtual event encourages your team to connect with laughter and problem solving challenges. No matter what option you choose, you get a real Parisian sharing their knowledge and passion with you and your team (berets are not required but extremely encouraged!).

8. Milk a Goat! And make cheese.

Bring your G.O.A.T. team together with, well, a goat! That’s right, a goat will be delivered to your office. Your group will have the opportunity to milk the goat and then use that milk to make cheese! The experience ends with a delicious ricotta cheese tasting. 

  • Time: 60 minutes
  • What’s included: Expert Avital: Host (Optional), All Ingredients + Tools, A Real Goat! (Optional) 
  • What We Do: Milk A Real Goat, Hands-On Ricotta Cheese Making, Ricotta Cheese Tasting with Herbs, Dried Fruits, Nuts, and Edible Flowers

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have-your-team-do-a-scavenger-hunt-as-an-unusual-office-team-building-activities9.Challenge Your Inner Child with an In-Office Scavenger Hunt!

An easy way to create an activity without including an outside service. However, you can either team up and have a few colleagues decide what objects will need to be found, or go outside of your organization and find an expert to do it for you. Either way, your colleagues will be running around in a tizzy looking for the treasures assigned to them. Be sure to get creative!

  • Time: flexible! As short or as long as you’d like.
  • What to include: A list of objects to be found or challenges to be accomplished, decide if you’ll have people split up into teams or fly on the solo, set a time limit, and go!

10. Go head-to-head with Edible Architecture creations

Go head-to-head in this competitive team building challenge with edible architecture creations. A high-energy competition to combat the afternoon slump. Choose from charcuterie, cheese, or veggie kits, making it friendly for all dietary restrictions. 

  • Time: 60 minutes
  • What’s included: Expert Avital: Host (Optional), All Ingredients + Tools (Choose Charcuterie Chalet, Cheese Cottage, or Veggie Villa)
  • What We Do:Edible Structure Team Building Competition, Take Instagrammable Photos, Eat Your Architecture!

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a-virtual-escape-room-is-a-good-unusual-office-team-building-activity11. Compete For an Escape Room World Record

This escape room experience is designed specifically for corporate teams. This activity is all about interacting with your peers in exciting ways to solve fun challenges. And, with TeamWorx, you can compete globally with other teams that have accepted the same challenge!

  • Time: 30, 60, 90 minutes
  • What’s included: Live host and moderator, tech that supports more human interaction, compete against World Record board, compatible with Zoom, MS-Teams, WebEx Teams, and Google Meet if everyone isn’t back at the office yet. 
  • What THEY Do: A virtual escape room that requires higher level thinking. Even though it is virtual – it is incredibly interactive.

12. Get artistic during a donut and latte art break

Get your creative juices flowing first thing with donut decoration, latte art, and team building games. A fun way to discover delicious alternatives to coffee and try your hand at some decoration techniques. 

  • Time: 30 or 60 minutes
  • What’s included: Expert Avital: Host (Optional), All Ingredients + Tools 
  • What We Do: Donut Decoration Bar with Fun Toppings and Team Building Bonus Activity, Unique Non-Coffee Latte Creation, like Golden Milk, Matcha, and Goji Chino, Experiment with Foamed Non-Dairy Milks

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a-themed-coworker-potluck-is-an-easy-unusual-office-team-building-activities13. Organize an Office Potluck with Wacky Theme

You hear “team potluck” and your eyes might roll to the back of your head in boredom. DON’T FRET! If you choose the right theme this team building activity can actually engage and enthrall, especially if you make it a competition! Choose one color for everyone to make their food – is red too easy? What about purple? Or foods related to your favorite movies? The options are endless!

  • Time: As long or as short as you’d like, we suggest about 60-90 minutes
  • What to include: Set up your biggest conference room with decorations related to the theme, designated places for everyone’s dishes to be tried anonymously, and a ballot for voting on best dish.

try-a-trivia-game-for-an-unusual-office-team-building-activities14. A Not So Classic Trivia Party

Is there a particular niche topic that seems to attract a lot of your team mates? A certain sport, genre of film, or period of time? Yes? Perfect! You can make a trivia game out of that topic. No common theme with your group? That’s ok too! You can create a fun one that only has to do with facts about your colleagues. This allows your team to get to know one another better and encourages them to consider the people they work with every day.

  • Time: 30-90 minutes
  • What’s included: Find a service or game company that makes trivia games on a particular topic for your crew. Or, you have everyone submit fun facts about themselves and aggregate those facts for a bespoke trivia game!

15. Unwind with conference room cocktails

Gather your group together for an office happy hour with an Award-Winning Mixologist! Choose from 5 delicious, seasonal cocktail recipes with all ingredients and tools provided. Create community from the comfort of your conference room.

  • Time: 60 minutes
  • What’s included: Expert Avital: Host (Optional), Award-Winning Mixologist • Optional, Cocktail or Mocktail Kits, All Tools 
  • What We Do: Hands-On Cocktail Crafting, Make 2 Different Cocktails or Mocktails, Discover Mixology Basics

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At Avital: we always want to use our trifecta of knowledge, creativity, and hardcore appreciation of food + drink to create experiences that bring people closer and open new doors. And as seasoned office facilitators, we intimately understand how important it is to maintain good camaraderie amongst employees to keep successful businesses thriving and powerful!

We can assure you there is no greater social unifier than food. With the return to work on the horizon, or already underway, now is a great time to be thinking about what can make that reintegration process happier, healthier, and significantly more fun!

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