Imagine being in an annual company retreat or staff meeting and everyone is looking all serious with straight faces and there’s this awkward silence? In such a situation, ice breaker questions come in handy. It often makes sense to break the ice before getting down to the business of the day. This helps to break social barriers, make everyone feel comfortable, and promote interaction.
The fun ice breaker questions here are simply designed for work, small groups, and virtual meetings to help ease the pressure on employees and encourage team bonding.
What Are Ice Breaker Questions?
These are intriguing questions that can be used to encourage people to express themselves, so you can get to know them better. Ice breaker questions always cause someone or a group of people to think deeply about something. To make the most out of an ice breaker session, the questions need not be scary or boring because when they are properly used, they can diffuse anxiety among team members.
These ice breaker questions are guaranteed for fun, and team participation is vital. Therefore, you should encourage everyone to participate and give meaningful answers. These questions can work for non-work-related groups, work-related gatherings, retreats, and places where team-building is needed because they involve less planning.
In your workspace, you can print these ice breaker questions and keep them on your desk or perhaps where everyone can easily access them. However, you can also save this epic list on your system for virtual team meetings, and while on a company retreat, you could print them and keep them handy. Whatever works for you, your work team will definitely love and feel excited about these fun ice breaker questions.
Below, you’d find great ice breaker questions and funny ice breaker questions that are thoughtful and will surely provoke meaningful insights to keep your teammates entertained. The list has been tailored to suit your every need in the workplace, including ice breaker questions for work, virtual team meetings, and small groups. For more, you can also check out our other conversation starters.
Good Ice Breaker Questions For Work
1. What class did you take in school that helped you with your job?
You might not believe it, but there are classes you took in college that go well beyond the classroom, and asking someone this question will help you find out what subjects they are passionate about. More than that, you could also know if their favorite subject has any influence on their line of work.
2. If you could have dinner with any famous person, who would you choose?
People love people for different reasons and celebrities are a bunch of talents. Whether for their brilliance, exuberant personality, or smart appearance, each celebrity has a unique quality that makes people love them. This question would surely spark a great conversation and further reveal who their celebrity role model is and why they chose them.
3. What’s your biggest fear? What’s the biggest fear you’ve ever faced?
Each day comes with new challenges, and in the workplace, almost everyone has fears and work-related anxiety. However, your ability to adapt and handle fears perfectly will surely make you a perfect team player. This is one of our favorite ice breaker questions that would undoubtedly spark great conversation.
4. What is that crucial skill you think everyone should have?
Although many skills are required for a work-related environment, effective communication is vital. However, different people might have different opinions about this, and asking your colleagues this question will definitely break the ice and lead to a more interesting conversation.
5. If you could be on any game show, which would you choose?
This is one of the ice breaker questions for work that you would be surprised at the answers you are getting. Game shows like Jeopardy!, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, Wheel of Fortune, Family Feud, Pyramid, and Celebrity Name Game are among the most popular. However, each person will have a particular reason for choosing any game show.
6. What’s the best vacation you have ever taken?
If you want to hear about their warm and fuzzy travel memories, asking this question will undoubtedly do the magic. With this ice breaker question, you will get to know your colleagues more and find out their best holiday destination.
7. Would you rather go back in time or be transported to the future?
Everyone has something they wish they could change if they have the power to do so. Throwing this question during a work meeting or company retreat would surely break the ice and get everyone talking. You would marvel at the responses you will get.
8. You just won a cruise to anywhere in the world! Where would you go?
Cruising is one way to enjoy and appreciate how large the world’s longest river is and the wave sounds, where there are no roads. When you win a cruise, it could be a lifetime opportunity to travel around the world or visit places you have only imagined.
9. Who is the smartest person you know?
We know employees come into a company to sell themselves. However, forcing them to sell someone else would give room for a direct comparison between the best among the team. They will get to say how and why their choice is really worth the hype.
10. What is part of your daily routine that you look forward to everyday?
To some, it could be to meditate or keep a journal, and to others, it could be cooking or taking a walk with a friend. Either way, we all have that part of the day we keep looking forward to, and this is one of the best ice breaker questions that will arouse social interaction among employees.
11. What non-work-related goal would you like to achieve in the next five years?
Knowing your employees’ plans is as important as your company’s growth. Everyone has a long-term goal, but not all are work-related. Asking this thought-provoking question will also get your employees thinking about the future.
12. What are three positive words people often use to describe you?
This question helps to find out how you often hear people describe your characteristics in a more positive light, such as brave, faithful, fearless, frank, adept, capable, considerate, courageous, and much more.
13. What’s the bravest thing you have ever done?
When this question pops up, it helps one to think about the many times they have done something significant in their life. Each employee may have something different and unique to say, making it even more funfilled.
14. What is your least favorite fashion trend that you are opting out of this season?
So many people pay attention to their looks and to them, looks are everything. Thus, removing outdated fashion trends will refresh your whole outlook on dressing and appearance. With this, you will find out their take on fashion.
15. If you could star in a movie with any famous actor/actress, who would you choose as your costar?
Most people dream about being able to stay opposite their Hollywood idols and these questions will surely get them to disclose who their favorite movie star is and why they would choose them as a costar if they had an opportunity to star in a movie.
16. What would you do if you could take a year off from work or school?
You can do many things with a gap year, and identifying why you need it will help you determine what to do with it. Whether it is a break from school or work to gain new skills or decide what to do next in life, it is entirely a personal decision.
17. What is the unique skill you bring to your job?
Getting your dream job has never been easier when you have the required skills. Asking this question will help you understand what unique skill each employee brings to the workplace.
18. What was the most fun thing you did last weekend?
Some employees are always busy that they barely have time for themselves. However, this is among the excellent ice breaker questions that can trigger weird but interesting answers.
19. At a company field day, what event would you most likely win?
There are many fun activities that can be done during a company field day like truck pull and bowling pins, baton race, soccer relay, pizza box relay, etc. Employees get to participate in the events that best suit them.
20. What activity helps you relieve stress?
Stress affects employees’ output and the company’s growth. Hence, unwinding and finding the right activity that can help relieve stress is essential.
Team Building Ice Breaker Questions For Small Groups
21. Would you rather work solo or in a team?
Depending on the task, everyone has where they bring out their highest potential. However, brainstorming helps the team get ahead with multiple inputs and combined strength when it comes to teamwork. Nevertheless, some people would prefer to work individually to succeed.
22. When was your first time being part of a team?
During interviews, prospective employees often get questions such as the team they have been a part of and what they were able to achieve. Answering this question will help you know your employees better, as some may find it challenging to build relationships while others do that with ease.
23. Do you think anyone can be a team player if they try, or are some people are just better on their own?
For one to succeed in the work environment, one must be a great team player and have the ability to help others succeed. That way, everyone succeeds, and the company grows.
24. What qualities do you think are best in a teammate?
From being passionate to being self-driven, confident, innovative, optimistic, respectful, hard-working, and committed, there are several qualities that make one a great teammate.
25. What can you do better than anyone else that you know?
Some qualities make us unique and stand out from the crowd. It could be having a good listening ear, being a great adviser, being empathic, or having the ability to form lasting memories. Whatever you are so good at makes you unique.
26. Are you a morning person or a night owl?
If you are a night owl, it will likely affect your mood throughout the day, but if you are a morning person, your body will always be in sync with your daily routine.
27. Would you rather be trapped in an elevator or stuck on a suspension bridge?
Some people are claustrophobic, fear of confined spaces and as such, won’t be okay when stuck in an elevator. Similarly, others can be acrophobic – fear of heights, which makes it even worse when stuck on a suspension bridge for a long time before being rescued.
28. If you won a lottery, what’s the first thing you would buy?
Winning a lottery can come with endless opportunities, and figuring out the first thing you could do would be a herculean task. Don’t be surprised some people have listed what they would do even before winning the lottery.
29. What game makes you the most competitive?
For gaming enthusiasts, it could be eSports or other online games, while to others, it may just be any board game or sports. This question will undoubtedly reveal which games employees are good at playing.
30. What have you done in your workplace that you are most embarrassed to admit?
We have all had an embarrassing workplace story. From falling asleep accidentally to messing up the toilet or abruptly sending a personal message to the general workgroup, etc.
31. If you could be part of any fictional team, what team would you choose (it doesn’t have to be a sports team!)
From team Ghostbusters, Spies Like Us, Sneakers, Doctor Detroit, and more, there are several fictional teams out there you might love so much and wouldn’t hesitate if given the opportunity to join them. However, some people would also like to be among their favorite sports teams.
32. What is your biggest team accomplishment?
This could be one of the most challenging questions to answer for some people, but to others, who are wonderful team players, it won’t be hard showing off some of the most significant achievements you have recorded as a team member.
33. What’s your favorite time of day: morning, afternoon, evening, or late night?
From morning, mid-morning, afternoon, late afternoon, evening, and night, there’s always part of the day when we are at our best, most productive, or best relaxed.
34. What type of partner would you choose to balance yourself out?
Relationships can’t thrive without a balance. Therefore, finding a partner who completes you is very important. If your relationship is one-sided, you might consider creating a balance by completing your partner in a positive light.
35. Would you rather live without heat and AC or live without social media?
With what the world has become – a global village, it could be hard for anyone to choose living without heat and air conditioner over social media. Besides, there are people who live in well-insulated houses and have conducive weather; these people don’t necessarily need heat or AC.
36. What is your absolute dream job?
We all want a nice and interesting job we can be proud of, a job that matches one’s skills and interests, to help them become the best they can be and achieve their growth, individually and as part of a team.
37. Say you’re independently wealthy and don’t have to work; what would you do with your time?
You’d be marveled at the answers to this question. While everyone is working to achieve financial independence and an improved standard of living, what happens when you have everything you need and can do anything at any time?
38. If you could instantly become an expert in something, what would it be?
From being an expert communicator to becoming a mind reader, giving advice, becoming a good analyst, mathematician, and much more, given one’s interests, they would always want to be the best in what they do.
39. If you could only eat one dessert for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Just imagine being presented with four different desserts, and you are to save only one from disappearing forever. This is undoubtedly one of the exciting ice breaker questions for work that will lead to funny answers.
40. What would you say your role is in a team?
Are you that team member who is ever willing to help your teammates in need or the one that informs the team about any development relating to the company’s projects and businesses? We all have our strengths and that makes each team member unique.
Best Ice Breaker Questions For Virtual Team Meetings
41. What does your morning routine look like when working from home?
Are you the type that does everything from the bed or do you have your workspace mapped out in the house? Some people whose work are typically from home usually take time to draw their schedule to include chores, exercise, break, and things to do when bored.
42. Do you have houseplants in your office?
Recent reports have shown that providing some greenery or indoor plants, courtyard, or vertical gardens in the office have positive benefits for the employers and their employees. The same goes for those who work from home.
43. Be honest, how often do you work from your bed?
While working from home, some people have the habit of working directly from their beds. However, this has never been a good practice as it will affect your work and productivity. Perhaps taking your work gadgets away from the bed will help create a balance between work and home.
44. What is that thing you think is totally overrated?
Many things, including birthdays, weddings, being always right, vacations, getting a degree, luxury items, finishing first, growing up, and lots more, are being given much importance but some people see them as they are not worth the hype.
45. If you were a superhero, what would your name be?
Many people want to start life as a superhero, which means when you can become one, you would need to first get a superhero name. This is one of the ice breaker questions for work that can lead to more funny and interesting answers during virtual team meetings.
46. Do you have any remote work productivity hacks?
Most times, people often mistakenly believe that work hacks reduce productivity, but that is not true. However, taking a few breaks during work will help give you renewed mental stamina whenever you return to work. So, try relaxing your brain by taking a few breaks or getting enough sunlight and see how it feels.
47. What work-from-home habit is most successful for you?
If you haven’t drawn your schedule yet for working from home, it could be hard to determine which habit is the most successful for you. You might have to create a routine first and see what works best for you.
48. What is the most interesting online article you’ve read lately?
The internet is a place where you can find virtually all kinds of things. From Goodreads to Medium, and much more, there are so many websites where you can find interesting pieces online. There are also other websites or directories out there.
49. What’s the name of your WiFi?
Every WiFi has a name, and during virtual work meetings, asking this ice breaker question will lead to more hilarious responses because people often give their WiFi funny and weird names. If you haven’t found yours already, right-click the WiFi icon in the taskbar and select Open Network and Sharing Centre. Next, click on WiFi to see the WiFi network name.
50. On a scale of 1 – 10, how experienced are you with remote work?
While most people might be comfortable with remote work, others see it as a very stressful thing to do. However, whichever category you fall under, the success of working remotely lies in your work style and habits.
51. Would you rather work from the beach or a mountain cabin?
Working from a beach house could be a fascinating thing to do, with the sounds of waves and breeze coming from the sea. However, the mountain also has a very unique and beautiful view, and for hikers, a cabin in the woods would be ideal for them.
52. Where is your dream location to work?
Depending on your career and what your future goals are, it would be a dream come true if given the opportunity to choose where to work. From Google to NASA and other interesting places around the world, there will always be a place everyone dreams to work one day.
53. Have you ever left a 1-star review online?
Sounds funny, but this is one of the most interesting ice breaker questions for work. Reviews are very important when it comes to buying things online. More so, when you encounter an unimpressive deal online, the only way to show your feeling is through reviews.
54. Professional, casual, or sweatpants? If there were no dress code, how would you dress for work?
Undoubtedly one of the funniest questions on this list of ice breaker questions for work. While organizations usually adhere to a business casual dress code, it could be an arduous task for some employees trying to fit into the system. Perhaps some might even want to appear on sweatpants during important business meetings.
55. If you could change one thing about your job, what would it be?
Some people get bored when there are no new challenges in their line of work, while others get choked if their job is not flexible. Either way, every employee would have at least one thing they would like to change if given the opportunity. This is one of the ice breaker questions that would guarantee a lively work gathering.
56. Where would you go in the event of a zombie apocalypse?
While some would choose an Island, boat, or yacht, others may even say lighthouse, bank vault, or a castle. However, one of the safest places to be during a zombie apocalypse is an underground bomb shelter. Asking this question during a virtual work meeting would definitely break the ice and get everyone talking in no time.
57. Was there an odd rumor that went around your high school that wasn’t true?
For example, during high school, some of the seniors tried to get the new students to believe we had a secret rooftop pool or the rumors about the high school sports coach or music teacher and his students.
58. What is your go-to excuse for being late to virtual meetings?
From your dog bitting the cord to a colleague who was having difficulty connecting to the virtual meeting, toilet excuse, or your boss sending you on an errand; we often hear a lot of excuses for someone not connecting to the virtual meeting early.
59. Where would you move if you could retire tomorrow?
The retirement plan would be to travel the world or visit places you have always dreamt about. While some may not give a straight answer, it could provide them with a hint to plan for their retirement.
60. If you had one extra hour of free time everyday, how would you use it?
Some people would take their free time to take that well-deserved nap, catch a yoga class, meditate, or fix something that is not well kept in the office.
When To Use Ice Breaker Questions
As earlier mentioned, ice breaker questions are special activities performed to warm up participants before the inception of an event, including meetings, work retreats, and others. When participants don’t know themselves, ice breakers will help them understand one another. Perhaps the ice breaker question is one of the most effective techniques to engage participants during training, meeting, and team meetings.
Carefully selected ice breaker questions, like the one we have listed above, help boost the confidence in employees or team members and make them comfortable enough to express themselves freely. For instance, you could play the classic ice breaker of Would You Rather Questions or Two Truths and Lie.
Each participant will be asked to give three statements about themselves in the latter. Two out of the three must be true, and one must be a lie. Then, the other participants will guess which among the statements is the lie.
This type of ice breaker not only engages people in a gathering but also helps them learn facts about themselves and form a good relationship with each other. While there are different types of gatherings, it is imperative to select ice breaker questions suitable for such meetings. It can also be based on brainstorming sessions in a team-building event and recent events that happened in the company, among others.
How Long Should a Typical Session of Ice Breaker Question Last?
Generally, ice breaker questions are not supposed to be too long to avoid overtaking the actual meeting, especially at work. A typical ice breaker question should last anything from 5 to 15 minutes. The aim is usually for people to relax, ease off, and feel comfortable to discuss pertinent issues during the meeting.
However, it is imperative to choose ice breaker questions that are suitable for a particular event, such as workplace, virtual meetings, work retreats, lunch meetings, and other different-sized groups.
When planning a successful meeting, try not to rely so much on the basics like the agenda, planning, and refreshment. Even though they are good strategies, don’t forget about the professional warm-up with these interesting work-related questions above. They help solve many things, from easing the tension in the room to making everyone feel comfortable before the commencement of an important meeting.
Don’t hesitate to try them out because they work like magic. Asides from ice breaker questions for work, you can also check out other resources, including Would You Rather Questions and Get to Know You Questions.