A little healthy competition can improve the sense of camaraderie around your office, and the right competition can boost your business's bottom line. Before you plan a competition, seek employee input; not all competitions are fun for all people, and some staff members may be hesitant to participate in contests that make them uncomfortable. After you've found something everyone can agree to, though, feel free to run wild promoting your game.
Sales and Other Challenges
If you run a sales-oriented business, start a sales competition. Encourage your team to compete to see who can achieve the highest number of sales, the largest dollar amount or the biggest improvement in sales. Track progress over a month or so using stickers or a thermometer posted somewhere prominent in the office and then offer a big incentive to the winner, such as a few days off work or tickets to a major event.
Co-Worker Trivial Pursuit
There's no substitute for a team that gets along, but it can be challenging to get your staff to socialize, particularly if some of them are shy. Try a version of Trivial Pursuit designed to get your team members to know one another. Ask each team member to write up 10 or 20 facts about herself and then distribute these cards to your staff. Even better, base the game on facts you already know -- such as that the secretary always has peanuts at her desk -- and then turn them into a game of co-worker trivia.
The Biggest Loser
If you pay for your staff's insurance, you have a big incentive to keep them healthy. Try sponsoring an office version of "The Biggest Loser." Reward the person who loses the highest percentage of body weight, or -- for the healthiest approach -- the one who comes closest to his ideal body mass index at the end of the competition.
If you want your staff to work on their health without focusing on the number on the scale, plan office Olympics. Much like field day when you were in school, this contest can incorporate any games you want -- from who can make copies the fastest to who can run 100 yards the quickest.