20 Team Building Ideas for Holiday Parties [Updated for 2022]

20 Team Building Ideas for Holiday Parties featured image
‘Tis the season to start brainstorming some creative ideas for holiday parties and with these team building activities, you can make your party as productive as it is fun. 

Updated on November 1, 2022

With the most wonderful time of year right around the corner, it’s time to start thinking of some awesome ideas for holiday parties. 

This is a great opportunity to get your workgroup together–whether in-person or virtually–for some holiday-themed team building activities to share some laughs, build bonds, and have fun together. 

Not sure where to start? No worries. We’ve compiled the top 15 virtual and in-person team building ideas for holiday parties. 

12 Virtual Team Building Ideas for Holiday Parties

Looking for a fun way to celebrate the holiday season with your remote team? Look no further than these amazing, festive virtual team building activities.

What makes these activities so great?

In addition to being a great time, virtual team building can be done incredibly cost-effectively, meaning you can have some holiday fun with your colleagues, even if your budget is tight.

1. Elf’s Virtual Merry Mingler

Buddys Virtual Merry Mingler Team Building Activity Header Image 1

As the holidays get underway, sometimes all you and your colleagues want to do is celebrate the season and spend quality time together. And with Elf’s Virtual Merry Mingler, that’s exactly what you’ll do. 

Set in a venue in Santa’s North Pole village, this virtual holiday team building activity is made up of a series of social mixer activities that are all about sharing a laugh, creating some positive festive energy, and letting teammates enjoy each other’s company—regardless of the geographical distance between them.

2. Frost’s Virtual Holiday Trivia

Frosts Virtual Holiday Trivia Team Building Activity Header Image 1

The holiday season is all about coming together and celebrating! So, in Frost’s Virtual Holiday Trivia, you and your team will be invited to join the Frosts in the lounge of their brand-new ice hotel. 

While you’re there, you’ll compete through three rounds of holiday and winter-themed trivia questions, earning points for each one answered correctly. But the fun doesn’t stop there! You’ll also become better acquainted with your colleagues as you take part in a round of Frost’s Icebreaker Questions. 

3. Send a Fun Gift to Your Virtual Team

Even a small gift goes a long way with your employees, so think about giving them something cost-effective and thoughtful to help brighten up their holidays. They’ll love receiving a gift in the mail!

This could include things like:

  • Food and Snacks: Give the gift of a healthy snack with a service like Caroo.
  • Insightful and Insightful Books: Give the gift of a book that will help your employees learn a valuable skill or gain some knowledge.
  • Office Accessories: Give your staff a gift they can use at work, like terrariums and plants, wireless chargers, or reusable water bottles and mugs.

For more ideas, check out our article that offers 26 great gift ideas for colleagues and customers.

4. Virtual Happy Hour Trivia

virtual happy hour trivia is perfect for holiday parties

Add a touch of trivia to your virtual holiday happy hour!

Get together with your team and take a trip to “Hamish McDuff’s” virtual pub. This hilarious Scottish pub owner is the legendary host of a trivia game that is perfect for your team’s virtual happy hour fun! 

Hamish will host two rounds of virtual pub trivia, featuring four themed categories of your choice. With 20 category options to choose from, you’ll be sure to find the perfect themes for your remote team – from Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader to Sports, Food & Drink, or even Celebrity Real Estate. 

5. The Virtual Do-Good Games

do some good in the world during the holidays with this virtual team building activity

The holidays are a time to give back, so do a little good with this philanthropic virtual team building activity.

Team up with your colleagues for a Virtual Do-Good Games to do some good in the world and give back to those in need, all while having a blast. This is a morale-boosting virtual team building activity that transforms friendly competition into charitable donations. 

6. Virtual Social Shuffle

virtual social shuffle is a team building activity to build bonds between colleagues during the holidays

Spend some of the holiday season getting to know your colleagues better with this ultra-social virtual team building activity.

Your group will learn fun facts about one another as you tackle a series of themed challenges together and engage in exploratory conversations.  

7. Virtual Clue Murder Mystery

add a spooky unique touch to your virtual office holiday party

Have you ever seen the movie The Nightmare Before Christmas? If you haven’t, it’s a classic animated movie where the worlds of Christmas and Halloween collide. So, if you and your team want to add a touch of spookiness to your holiday season, you’ll love this one.

With Clue Murder Mystery, your team will need to solve the murder of a man named Neil Davidson by figuring out who had the means, motive, and opportunity to commit the crime. This is the perfect virtual game for folks who love problem-solving team building activities.

8. Virtual Team Pursuit

keep your brain active during the holidays with this virtual team building activity

Just because the holidays are coming around doesn’t mean you need to let your brain turn off! Keep your team engaged with this fun, high-energy activity.

In groups, your remote employees will tackle a series of mental, physical, skill, and mystery challenges, earning points for each one successfully completed. Whichever has the most points when time runs out will be crowned the winners!  

9. Water Cooler Trivia

If you’re trying to find fun and unique ways to keep your team engaged on an ongoing basis, Water Cooler Trivia is a great way to do it. Water Cooler Trivia integrates into your email, Slack, or Microsoft Teams channels and automatically sends trivia quizzes directly to your team members on a weekly basis. You can choose the trivia schedule and categories, and Water Cooler Trivia will write the questions, automate their distribution, and grade the results for you.

10. Virtual Holiday Hijinks  

a great virtual team building activity for holiday parties

If you and your team love a high-energy group activity, then Holiday Hijinks is perfect for you. 

Whether you’re in the office together or working remotely, you can celebrate the holidays with this festive holiday-themed team building activity that’s all about working collaboratively to tackle a variety of holiday-themed physical, cerebral, and skills-based challenges. 

In this activity, your group will split into teams. Each team will race against the clock and try to outpace the competition as they earn points for completing challenges, such as:  

  • Cookie Conundrum – Luke made 42 holiday cookies. He brought half of them to his office. He ate one third of the cookies that were left. Then he gave 8 cookies to his neighbor. He left the rest of the cookies out for Santa. How many cookies did Santa get?  

  • Elf Yourself – Each team member needs to create the most unique gift you can using only the items available to you. Snap a photo of everyone showcasing their gifts.  

  • Junk Yard Jingle – Record a 5-second video of a teammate creating the beat to a holiday song using objects found around your house or office. Be sure to practice getting your notes right as the instrumental version has to be in tune!  

You’ll need to be mindful, though. Each challenge is worth a different number of points based on its level of difficulty, so you’ll need to keep a close eye on the leaderboard and tackle challenges strategically if your team wants to be crowned Holiday Hijinks Champions! 

11. Virtual Yuletide Showdown 

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Looking for a way to ring in the holiday season with your team while exercising communication and collaboration skills, having a lot of laughs, and creating bonds with your colleagues? 

Then Yuletide Showdown is the perfect activity for you.  

In this fast-faced and high-energy team building activity, you and your colleagues will race the clock, competing to unlock six different challenge categories: Sounds of Christmas, Holiday Trivia, Holiday Characters, Holiday Pictionary, Festive Scavenger Hunt, and Holiday-Style Who-Dun-It.  

Then, you’ll need to strategically complete challenges, keeping a close eye on the real-time leaderboard and staying one step ahead of the competition.  

12. Virtual Happy Hour Trivia

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If you’re planning to host a virtual holiday happy hour with your team, then you’ll love Virtual Happy Hour Trivia. In this activity, you’ll get together with your team and take a trip to “Hamish McDuff’s” virtual pub. This hilarious Scottish pub owner is the legendary host of a trivia game that is perfect for your team’s virtual happy hour fun!

Hamish will host two rounds of virtual pub trivia, featuring four themed categories of your choice. With 20 category options to choose from, you’ll be sure to find the perfect themes for your remote team – from Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader to Sports, Food & Drink, or even Celebrity Real Estate.

And if you’re looking for even more ideas for how to host an incredible virtual happy hour, check out our list of 35+ unbeatable virtual happy hour games for workgroups.

8 In-Person Team Building Ideas for Holiday Parties

If you’re able to get together with your colleagues in person and you’re looking for a fun team building activity to add to your office holiday party, then you’re going to love these ideas.

1. Decorate Your Office  

decorate your office with your colleagues for a holiday team building activity

Get your office holiday-ready by decorating with your team. 

We’d recommend allocating a small budget for your team to go out and gather decorations and supplies. But you might also want to consider asking your team to bring in something that reminds them of the holidays. 

That way, your staff can celebrate all of their different traditions together and your office can truly embody the holiday spirit for everyone on your team. 

For an added interesting element, you can each talk about the items you brought and why they’re meaningful for you. 

2. Two Truths and a Lie: Holiday Gift Edition 

There’s a good chance you’ve heard of the game Two Truths and a Lie.  

But if not, the premise is pretty simple: each person on your team will be tasked with coming up with three facts. Two of them will be true, and one will be a lie. 

Then, the rest of your group will need to decide which ones are which – and you might be surprised by the answers! 

A surefire recipe for hilarity, you can put a holiday twist on the traditional Two Truths and a Lie game by making it focused on the weirdest, wackiest, funniest, and most outside-the-box holiday gifts you colleagues have ever received. 

3. Host a Holiday Trivia Game 

Another great way to level up your holiday party is with some holiday trivia.  

The key here is to make sure you cover off questions from a wide range of holiday traditions, and don’t be afraid to throw in some pop culture references and historical facts. 

Feeling stumped on holiday trivia questions? Don’t worry. This list from UsefulTrivia.com has a ton, including: 

  • Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was creation as a promotion for what department store? 
  • Eggnog was first consumed in which U.S. city?  
  • What opera debuted in Cairo, Egypt, on Christmas Eve 1871? 

Whoever gets the most questions right at the end of the game wins! 

4. Have an Ugly Sweater Party  

having an ugly sweater party is a fun way to celebrate the holidays with your colleagues

There aren’t many holiday traditions more hilarious than the classic Ugly Sweater Party.  

Whether you’re hosting a virtual holiday happy hour or having an in-person holiday party, task your team with finding the tackiest, cheesiest, funniest holiday-themed sweater they can find. 

If you want to make things extra interesting, you can turn it into a competition and have your team vote on who’s got the best – or worst – sweater.  

5. Card Decorating

Get your team together and exercise a little creativity as you hand-craft cards together. Whether you’re creating personal cards for your team to give to their loved ones or cards that your team can give to clients and customers on behalf of your organization, this is a fun, low-key way to spend time together.

You’ll just need a few supplies:

  • High-quality paper
  • Markers
  • Glitter
  • Stickers and decorations

If you want to add a little extra holiday cheer to your card decorating event, throw on some seasonal music, and bring in some holiday snacks with a service like Caroo. You can even just take this quick 60-second quiz to get personalized options for your team.

6. Holiday Origami

If you want to learn a new skill with your team for the holidays, you can try out some DIY holiday origami. You can use your origami as ornaments, stocking stuffers, or decorations.

All you need is some thicker-stock paper and a tutorial to follow along with your team, like these ones:

This is a fun, engaging, and mentally-stimulating way to celebrate the holidays together.

7. Volunteering and Giving Back

The holidays are all about giving back to the community and focusing on goodwill toward all. And that’s why finding ways to volunteer and give back is such an amazing way to celebrate.

Volunteering is also incredibly important for employee morale. In fact, 65% of employees want to work for organizations with strong social consciences. So, finding ways for your organization to give back can boost employee morale, support a stronger and more vibrant company culture, and even support a more profitable bottom line. 

If you’re looking for ways to give back, here are a few ideas your team might enjoy:

Volunteer Somewhere Local

No matter where your team is located, there are likely a ton of unique volunteer opportunities that you can’t find anywhere else. Use a service like VolunteerMatch to discover new ways you can give back in your area, and to learn about all the different causes you can support.

Once you decide how your group is going to help out, you can try giving employees extra time off to volunteer, or set aside a few hours for everyone to head out of the office. The efforts will be worth your while because employees will have the opportunity to bond as they give back.

Plan a Charity Team Building Activity

Charity team building activities are some of the most popular types of team building for customers across North America. Employees love these events because they serve a triple purpose: they’re fun to participate in, they help build better working relationships, and they give back in meaningful ways.

Some of Outback Team Building & Training’s most popular charity activities include…

Charity Bike Buildathon
charity bike buildathon is a perfect charitable team building activity for workgroups that like to do good and give back

Build, decorate, and donate bicycles in this team building competition that challenges your creativity and presentation skills.  

Wheelchairs for Charity 
wheelchairs for charity is a perfect hands on charitable team building activity

Our Wheelchairs for Charity activity fuses philanthropy with real-world learning outcomes to help participants give back while sharpening their business skills. Together, teams will build and test fully functional wheelchairs before donating them to those in need. This exercise is great for helping leadership team members increase their empathy while enhancing their communication and collaboration skills.

For even more volunteer inspiration, check out our list of 15+ creative volunteer ideas for workgroups.

8. Holiday Workouts

When you think about the holidays, the first thing that comes to mind might be lots of festive food and drinks. But if your team is full of fitness lovers, doing a festive workout can be a great way to balance out all those indulgences.

This can be anything from hiring a yoga instructor to lead a holiday-themed session to hosting a 30-minute group workout. Just make sure to keep the holiday music playing and to be cognizant that you’re choosing a type of activity that will be suitable for everyone on your team.

Do you have any other holiday team building ideas that we might’ve missed? If so, let us know what they are in the comments section below! 

Learn More About Virtual and In-Person Holiday Team Building Activities for the Workplace  

For more information about how your team can celebrate the holidays with a fun team building activity, reach out to our Employee Engagement Consultants.   


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