If you're looking for team-building projects that can help your teams become closer and work better together – but don't require superhuman athletic abilities or expecting a co-worker to catch you and ending up on the floor – a scavenger hunt may be the perfect solution. The key is to consider corporate scavenger hunt ideas that are memorable and that require real teamwork to solve.
Planning a Company Scavenger Hunt
If you're charged with organizing a scavenger hunt, it can seem like an overwhelming task. However, like most big jobs, it's much easier to tackle when you take it step by step.
- Quantify the participants: Determine how many employees will participate. Will it be just for your department? Will you include another department or two, perhaps those that work closely with your team? Will it be a company-wide event?
- Choose a theme: A theme gets everyone thinking about that topic. Maybe it's about the company's product line or a new product, which would help everyone learn about it so they can better explain it to customers.
Arrange teams: Separate everyone into teams, which can be done several ways. If you want to help your current teams to better communicate, keep them together. If you want to introduce people to others they don't know well, pair them on teams. Keep teams even
two or four on each
so no one feels like the "odd one out."
Set a time limit: How long do you want the hunt to last? One or two hours is a reasonable amount of time.
List your rules: Define the parameters of the hunt. Do they need to bring back items they find or take pictures of them as evidence? How are winners decided? How many prizes will be awarded? Keep the rules simple.
* Decide on prizes: Awarding prizes makes the hunt more fun, and it's a good way to wrap up the event, laugh over the hurdles and comment lightheartedly about what you saw people doing. Prizes could be small gift cards to local eateries and shops, but if the grand prize is an extra vacation or sick day, people would likely try harder next time.
Sparking Business Scavenger Hunt Ideas
Company scavenger hunt ideas can come from your business itself, the community, current news and just about anywhere.
- Industry ingredients: For a restaurant, think about menu items or obscure ingredients. For example, what's yellow and made with garlic, lemon and pepper? People answer by taking a picture of the yellow squash dish.
- Getting to know you: Ask participants to submit three unusual facts about themselves without sharing theirs with anyone else. Put a few of each person's facts into a large list and ask participants to identify each person. Let some people have more than one fact because otherwise, it would be easy to figure out answers by who hasn't been identified yet.
- Hidden history: Pairs search the internet for answers to questions about topics like who founded the company, its original slogan and how many products the company sells now compared to 50 years ago.
- Company charades: Have team members take turns recording each other acting out moments in the company's history, such as when the 100th product was sold and when the company moved.
- Think local: Help teams become familiar with the community by writing clues about its history, prominent buildings, well-known people, eateries, etc. This requires them to go to the locations and take photos showing that they were there.
Be sure pairs work together on every question and in the same room so they experience cooperation and learn how the other person approaches problems and challenges. Some efficient workers will try to split up the list and have each research half, but that won't help foster teamwork.
Creating Challenging Clues
Regardless of the business scavenger hunt ideas you consider, the hunt will be more fun if you create challenging clues. Team members will need to put their heads together to solve them, learning more about each other as they work through the list. An example of a clue concerning a paper clip might be:
Easy clue: Use it to hold papers together.
Challenging clue: It has a long, smooth top but hundreds of sharp edges inside.
Barbara Bean-Mellinger is a freelance writer who lives in the Washington, D.C. area. She has written on business topics for afkinsider.com, smallbusiness.chron.com, Harbor Style Magazine, the Charlotte Sun and more, as well as advertising copy and materials. Barbara holds a B.S. from the University of Pittsburgh and has won numerous awards in B2B and B2C marketing.