Portable Team Building: Escape the Company Meeting

October 6, 2022 by Nate Martin

Ever wondered what it would be like to try a team building exercise that actually works? One that grows relationships in a way that doesn’t feel forced or awkward? Yeah, us too. Between elaborate obstacle courses and laser-tag rinks that smell like a sweaty baseball glove, it can be tough to find an activity that feels both challenging and engaging for your employees.


Besides, most workplaces these days wouldn’t be able to play lazertag even if they wanted to. Everyone’s gone remote or hybrid – so our options are now limited to things you can do on Zoom (which, let’s face it, isn’t much). 


But there is one team building activity that’s not only portable – meaning you can do it anywhere, anytime – but also happens to be incredibly effective: our hybrid/portable escape rooms here at Puzzle Break. Let’s take a closer look!


Why We Need Portable Team Building 


Without sounding like a broken record, there’s no doubt that the workplace of today looks vastly different than it did even a year ago. And while some companies are bringing employees back into the office, many are opting to keep things remote for the foreseeable future. 


But did you know that most companies haven’t settled for either of these arrangements? More to the point, they’ve settled for a mix of both – some employees working from home, and others coming into the office a few days a week. We like to call this the “hybrid workplace.” 


According to Accenture, a whopping 68 percent of high-performing companies are using this hybrid model to great success. The downside? It’s much more difficult to get the whole team together for a team-building activity. 

And yes, this is a huge issue; it’s especially worrying since, according to Salesforce, the majority of leaders blame team failures and issues on a lack of alignment. In other words: team cohesion is crucial to success, and we’re not doing enough to foster it. This is where portable team building comes in.


What is Portable Team Building?


By definition, a portable team building activity can be done anywhere – whether that’s in the office or at home. Parameters like this mean that most portable activities are virtual, but they definitely don’t need to be! 


In fact, one of the best things about portable team building is that it opens up a whole world of possibilities – activities that can be done in-person, online, or a mix of both. The bottom line is that it needs to include the entire team (and it shouldn’t be tethered to one geographical location). 


Let’s take a look at a few examples: 


Online Quizzes 

Often considered the layman’s team builder, online quizzes aren’t actually as lame as they sound. If you use a website like Kahoot!, the customizability options are endless – you can make the quiz as long or as short as you want, and you can design it to be as challenging or easygoing as your team needs. 


Not to mention, these quizzes can take place over a video call like Zoom, which makes them ideal for a hybrid workplace. The only drawback? They’re not particularly interactive, so they won’t do much to help with things like communication and collaboration. 


Puzzles and Brain Teasers 

Puzzles are a great way to get your team thinking outside the box – quite literally. They encourage creative problem-solving and are perfect for teams that need to work on their collaboration skills.


 

Many companies steer clear of puzzles, though, because they’re typically difficult to make work unless everyone’s in the same room. But that’s not necessarily true! Tons of online puzzles and brain-teasers can be done in a hybrid setting (like our portable escape rooms – stay tuned to hear more…!)


Creative Projects / Arts & Crafts 

Not all team building activities have to be gamified. Sometimes, the best way to level up your team is to give them a creative project to work on together. 


It could be anything from creating a new company slogan to designing a t-shirt for your company’s softball team. The key is that it should be something that gets everyone thinking and working together towards a common goal. 



Portable Escape Rooms: The Best of Both Worlds? 


Finally! An activity where you can get the best of both worlds: an engaging, interactive team building activity that can come to your next company meeting, corporate offsite, or team getaway. 


Escape rooms in and of themselves are the perfect storm for team building. They’re fun, challenging, and require communication and collaboration to succeed. In an escape room, your team will be learning things like: 


  • How to delegate tasks based on each person’s strengths 
  • How to build and grow work relationships
  • How to handle frustration and setbacks 
  • How to communicate properly as a group

The only drawback to escape rooms is that they’re not exactly portable… until now. Puzzle Break’s Portable / Hybrid Escape Rooms 


Did you know? Our hybrid escape room experiences are completely flexible. Knowing that the majority of teams are now operating part on-site, part WFH, we’ve designed our rooms to be enjoyed no matter where your team members are located. 

Organizing a conference? No worries. We’ll pack up the necessary supplies, set up in your conference center, and facilitate the game with no limit on the number of participants. 


Need a team-building activity for your next big meeting? We’ve got you covered. Our rooms can be set up in any large space, and we’ll even help plan and facilitate your event. 


Trying to build your company culture in a hybrid environment? Let us set up the perfect escape room experience that lets your remote employees crack cases alongside their in-office counterparts.


 

No matter what your team-building goals are, our portable hybrid escape rooms can help you achieve them – all while being completely flexible to the ever-changing landscape of work.


What To Expect in a Portable Escape Room 

If you’ve never had the pleasure of hosting a portable or hybrid escape room, here’s what you can expect: 

  • A completely immersive and interactive experience that will have your team laughing, cheering, and high-fiving each other in no time 
  • A game master who will be with you throughout the entire experience, help facilitate team building, and answer any questions you may have 
  • An escape room that can be set up anywhere – all we need is a large enough space to accommodate your team 

Conferences are a blast; we generally set up tables for groups of six, with large displays hung around the conference arena to keep everyone on the same page. We also have a few tricks up our sleeves to help with the audio/visual aspect so no one feels left out of the fun and all are fully engaged with maximum buy-in. 

When it comes to hybrid escape rooms, we tailor every experience to suit the specific workplace we’re in. We’ve done everything from setting up in boardrooms to large warehouses – and we’re always up for a challenge.


Puzzle Break’s Best Escape Rooms 

As you’re likely aware, escape rooms aren’t made with cookie-cutters; there are lots of different stories, mysteries, and challenges depending on which room you choose. 

Here at Puzzle Break, we have a few different room themes that we’ve designed for the purpose of team building (as well as good old-fashioned fun, of course!) Here’s a sneak peek:


 

The Sentinel Signal 

The search among the stars for extraterrestrial life has run fruitlessly for decades. Until today. Does your team of researchers have what it takes to crack the code and establish contact before it’s too late? 


A Hollywoodland Mystery 

It’s 1950s Hollywood, and not everything is glitz & glamor: There’s been a murder! Can you and your team of detectives find the clues, solve the puzzles, unravel the mystery, and catch the murderer before time runs out? 


The Grimm Escape 

An evil witch has cast a curse, and it’s up to your team to save the day. Can you and your team of adventurers find the hidden clues, solve the puzzles, complete your quest, and break the witch’s spell before it’s too late? 


As you can see, we’ve got a room to fit every team’s interests. And we’re always up for a challenge – so get in touch to design your ideal team-building experience today! 


Is Portable Team Building Worth It? 

We’ve covered the different options for portable team building; we’ve shown you the magic of our hybrid escape rooms here at Puzzle Break. But you’d be forgiven for wondering – is all of this time, money, and hassle really necessary?


At Puzzle Break, we’re not just here to laugh and joke around (although we do enjoy that, too). We’re here to help you build a better team – one that communicates better, solves problems more efficiently, and just plain enjoys working together. 


We’ve seen firsthand the benefits that come from arranging an escape room with your team. In fact, here’s a testimonial from one of our clients: 


“Like all companies, our firm was challenged to find a virtual experience to host our annual kick-off event for 900 employees. To us,that seemed like a near-impossible task – but to Puzzle Break, it was what they were made for. 

Their team walked us through every aspect of the experience, preparing us for the number of attendees, proactively troubleshooting with our IT team, and enabling us to collaborate with employees all over the world.” 


If we can make it worthwhile for 900 employees, we can do the same for you and your team. Ready to get started? So are we!

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