Pleasing a large group of people is one thing, but pleasing an entire crowd is another challenge. Making sure all the attendees of your next event are happy is a huge feat but a necessary one!
- Anything competitive is always a hit
- Can’t go wrong with hosting some prize drawings and giveaways
- Trivia helps keep our brain moving in a new way
- Ignite new friendships with the Matching Game
- Valuable quizzes with fun ways to win
- Icebreakers of all shapes and sizes
- Team-building games can get your team feeling the heat
- Incorporate a Golden Ticket or two
- Establish some trendy photo props around
- Scavenger hunts
Audience participation games are the best way to ensure your team members enjoy themselves. Here are my top 10 that I’ve always seen work wonders!
See Related: Why Employee Empowerment Matters
#1. Anything With Some Friendly Competition
Company events are a powerful yet surefire way to recognize and reward your employees. They deserve to know that their company cares about them.
But company events aren’t complete without entertaining activities and fun antics. That’s what keeps our youthful spirit alive and boosts a positive company culture.
That’s why the first activity on my list is anything competitive. Now, that may seem broad, but it’s for a reason. Each team is unique, so finding the perfect competitive game can be challenging.
Bringing In Friendly Competition
For example, a tech startup could use competitive quizzes on a programming language, while a marketing agency could see who takes the best Instagram-worthy photo. Regardless, find the competition your team loves the most, and roll with it.
Friendly competition builds team morale, improves employee engagement, and promotes healthy workplace relationships. It helps your team get closer to one another while maintaining a competitive atmosphere necessary for business.
#2. Can’t Go Wrong With Prize Drawings
Everyone loves getting free stuff. At least, I know I do. And I’m sure your entire team does as well!
If you want your company event to really make the people happy, give them free stuff. For starters, make sure you hand out company swag. Being able to represent the company is a source of pride for many employees.
Next, put together some prize drawings. Again, there are many different ways to do this.
A great place to start is with spin-to-win games. A wheel with corporate emcee commentary adds a fun and lighthearted element to all group activities and lets participants walk away with something.
The prizes can range from a stylish pen, a company-branded mug, or a new work-from-home office. It should go without saying that “the bigger, the better.” The sky is the limit!
#3. Trivia For Competitive And Educational Fun
A quick game that you really can never go wrong with is trivia. This classic allows people to learn something new while engaging in competitive and exhilarating fun!
Plus, trivia is easy to host either in-person or virtually. For those hosting an online company event, adding some trivia after your keynote speaker is a great way to get the fun started. This is my personal favorite, and I’ve seen just how much people love it!
#4. Ignite Friendships With The Matching Game
Here’s a fun game that can get the entire group going. The Matching Game is a classic for in-person events, but if planned accordingly, it can also be creatively adapted for virtual events.
I’ll break it down for you.
How To Play The Matching Game
Start by getting plenty of blank sticky name tags. Next, write the names of famous celebrities or other notable people on each of them. Then, when the attendees start to arrive, place one on each of their backs.
As the event goes on and people intermingle, employees can ask “yes” or “no” questions to others in an attempt to divulge who’s name is on their back.
That’s the classic version. But it’s easy to make it unique to your team. All you need to do is find something that everyone is familiar with (whether it be other people within the company or even a list of things associated with a typical industry hobby). Then, use that to inspire a new list of names or things.
#5. Valuable Quizzes And A “First To The Finish Line”
Quizzes can easily be integrated into fun games or made to be their own activity. And tying it in with “first to the finish line” is a great way to get people excited.
People often use trivia with this type of player-progression tactic. Either way, it’s fun to encourage people to finish first!
The objective of the game is to be the first team to cross the finish. And the first to cross the finish line wins! But it’s a bit more creative than that.
As teams answer questions and score points, they have a themed icon that moves across the board. This can be anything like race cars, company logos, or other icons. So, instead of a traditional points leaderboard, there’s a fun visualization of who the winning team is!
Bonus: 12 Tips For Becoming The Best Motivational Speaker
#6. Icebreakers Are A Must-Have
A must-have for any conference or company event is icebreakers. Sometimes, employees can be in their shells when they first arrive. And often, large groups of other employees mean interacting with people they don’t know.
But icebreakers are a fun activity that helps people open up to the other attendees. Anything that gets people chatting and smiling is always necessary.
A Classic Friendly Icebreaker
A great team exercise is one called “sit down if.”
To start, get everyone in the audience to stand up. The event leader or speaker will then list off one-by-one specific actions that people in the crowd might have done.
If a person has done one of these activities or actions, they sit down. And the speaker can keep going until there’s no one or only one person left standing.
It’s essential to steer clear of inappropriate, divisive, or crude topics, as the point of the game isn’t to alienate people. Instead, it’s fun to quickly get to know those around you and see who is interested or has done similar hobbies or activities!
#7. Team-Building Games Can Work Wonders
A significant point of company events is to help your employees feel appreciated and connected. And it should go without saying that any team-building activity is a surefire way to get people interacting and connecting!
Find something your employees will adore, and go for it. For example, try out one of the following:
- Karaoke evening
- Online office games
- Office Olympics
- Customized mad-libs
- Pictionary telephone
#8. Incorporate A Golden Ticket For A Lucky Employee
We’ve all seen Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and its iconic Golden Ticket scene, right? What’s not to love about it?
Craft a few of your own company Golden Tickets, and place one or more under a few chosen seats in the area. Then, as the event begins, ask people to check their seats.
Gift the lucky few with a prize they won’t forget!
#9. Establish Some Photo Props
If it’s not on social media, did it even happen?
Either way, putting up some photo props is a good way for people to save memories. Plus, they can be used on the company’s social media accounts afterward!
Make sure any props or decor align with the event’s theme. Maintaining a cohesive aesthetic can help bring the entire event together.
#10. Scavenger Hunts Are A Classic
You can’t go wrong with this team-building classic. A scavenger hunt is a great way to get people engaged, interacting, and connecting. Your event won’t be complete without one!
You can create your own hunt or go through a third-party vendor. Decide if you want it indoors or outdoors and how extensive you want it to be!
Scavengers are a type of photo-based gamification that promote excellent team collaboration. Small groups can search for items from a list while engaging in a fun adventure. Whether in your cozy office space or a large city park, it’s fun for everyone!
Hosting a virtual event? Have a virtual scavenger hunt. Challenge team members to find items from around their homes. The first one to collect them all wins!
Whether hosting a company event or an industry conference, incorporating fun games and activities is a great way to get people interested and engaged. And, at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about!
Keep Reading: How To Organize A Conference With An Event Emcee
Adam Christing has been called “The Tom Brady of emcees.” He has hosted more than 1,000 company meetings, special events, gala celebrations, and more. He is the author of several books and founder of CleanComedians.com. For more event tips, follow Adam Christing on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and YouTube.