How Airbnb is Changing the Face of Employee Engagement

Sally Hetherington   3 September, 2020
Employee Engagement Featured

Team building. Two words that are prone to send many employees running for the hills arguing that they have more important things to do with their time. Yet once you actually get to it building a team that is engaged, understands individual differences and encourages engagement can only be good for company culture, and in turn, your bottom line. According to Forbes, finding activities that will lift team morale, increases employee engagement by building up forward momentum and team confidence.

In the wake of the COVID 19 pandemic, it’s near impossible to have a team -building experience with every member present. Many companies are continuing to  encourage their employees to work remotely, which can have negative effects on an engaged workforce and cohesive company culture. Some employees may experience feelings of isolation and not belonging.

Wondering how best to nurture your company culture during a pandemic? Click here for some ideas.

In these times, HR managers need to think outside the box to keep their employees engaged, motivated and in high spirits. Queue AirBnB. Given they’re in the hospitality industry, they’ve experienced some of the worst business hardships during the pandemic but they’ve been great at pivoting their business by encouraging hosts to offer their experiences online. In this post, we’ve rounded up a few of our favourite experiences for virtual team building, offering a wide range of options to get you started.

airbnb employee engagement

Travel to an Italian Orchard

For those who have missed an opportunity to travel, The Treasure Hunt is right up your alley. Grab your team and take a virtual walk through an Italian orchard with your live host, Peitro collaborating to solve riddles, puzzles and encrypted codes along the way to find his great-grandfather’s secret Tuscan recipe. Once solved, you’ll have access to the family’s secret recipe. Why not organise a second virtual meet with your employees to cook the recipe together?

airbnb virtual employee engagement

Experience Ancient Greece

Sticking with the travel theme, host Fragiskos, dressed as Socrates, offers a very entertaining game of True vs False, tackling Ancient Greek history and myths. This interactive game is not your standard historical experience, but rather a game of amazing facts, strange stories and a few bald-faced lies - leaving you and your teammates to sort fact from fiction. An activity for the open minded team, the host warns that this game is a little below the belt however a family-friendly version is available on request.

airbnb virtual team building

Craft with an Artist

For the more crafty team, although no previous experience necessary, consider a Learn to Collage workshop with Barcelona-based artist Maria. All you will need is some old magazines, a pair of scissors and glue or tape. Join your teammates on a journey of creativity, repurposing old objects and learning new techniques, creating something beautiful to present when you get back to the office.

virtual team building

Drink and Draw

Staying on the right side of your brain, Jillian offers a Drink and Draw class, inviting your team into her virtual studio, taking you through a series of games and exercises for both doodlers and seasoned artists alike. In the first half of the workshop you will learn to draw a few still life studies using objects from your home, and in the second half you will be invited to draw your teammates through your device, learning different drawing techniques.

airbnb virtual team building cooking

Cook a Cape Malay Curry

Another great way to bond as a team is to share a meal - and who doesn’t love a good curry! Fayruza will teach you to cook an authentic Cape Malay Curry from her home in the Bo-Kaap in Cape Town. She will use recipes handed down to her by her late grandmother, using authentic ingredients that you can buy beforehand at your local supermarket, such as cinnamon, cardamom and cumin. This will be accompanied by a savoury rice and a simple sambal, as well as a warm healing spicy drink.

airbnb virtual team building cooking tacos

Team up for Tacos

Sticking with hot and spicy engage your employees to try their hands at Mexican Street Tacos with pro-chef Graciela. Graciela, who owns her own cooking studio, will start with a recipe overview followed by a guide to preparing traditional salsa, taco filling and home-made flour tortillas, with practical recipes that you can all follow at home and share together virtually afterwards.

Escape the Office

For something a bit more interactive consider a digital Solve the Mystery Escape Room. Your game master Klaudia will present a plot by sharing her screen with you, where you will need to work as a team to solve riddles, using Google or YouTube to find the answers. Alternatively join Kat’s Living Room Legends Virtual Scavenger Hunt which will require teams to find and use random household objects in fun ways - showing off your skills in art, improv, communication and problem-solving.

Need an actual escape from the daily grind? Click here for our favourite local UK getaways using your employee benefits.

Working remotely doesn’t mean that your employees feel isolated and far removed from the team. With our world getting smaller through the use of modern technology, anything is possible. Building a company culture where teams are encouraged to collaborate and share is integral to keeping employees productive and engaged. For more ways to engage your team, book a demo with us today to find out how Staff Treats helps SME’s to transform their employee engagement strategies.

Sally Hetherington

Full time teen wrangler, part time writer, passionate traveller and wannabe chef.

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