Social Services Team Building Activities

Social workers, whether working from a cubicle, medical facility, or any other location, all have something in common: being constantly busy! For social workers, a company picnic or other event should be focused on relaxation, downtime, and getting out to stretch their legs.

For social service workers, team building activities should also emphasize and encourage the sharing of diverse perspectives and expertise, which enriches the collective knowledge of the group. A well-connected and cohesive social service team is better equipped to navigate the complexities of their field, providing more comprehensive and empathetic support to those they serve. So, too, should activities be focused on kicking back and having fun for these always-busy workers.

With this in mind, we’ve collected a list of games aimed at working together, playing together, and getting to know each other better. Here are a few of our favorite team building activities for social service workers.

Social Services Team Building Activities: Cup Stack

Ice Breakers

At the start of any team building session, ice breakers are perfect for warming players up. For social workers, this also provides some structured downtime during your company picnic or team building day out. Icebreakers are beneficial for team building, in that they inspire communication and collaboration among players. Short and sweet, these games are sure to kick off your team building session on the right foot.

Silent Interviews

To play this game, your team must be divided into pairs, preferably ones who don’t know each other well. Ask your players to introduce themselves to their partner with one caveat: they must do so silently! The group must relay three things about themselves using only gestures. Once the information has been relayed, the partners must introduce their teammates to the group, verbalizing the three things mimed to them.

This game is a great way to promote cross-department bonding and serves to stretch your social workers’ problem-solving skills and other mental acuity they use during the workweek.

Name That Tune

Divide players into teams and have one player from each team face off in a 1-on-1 battle. Play five seconds of a popular song and have them guess. If both players don‘t know, let anyone call it out.

This game is perfect for starting off a team building session. It’s fast-paced, exciting, and gets players in the zone for the rest of the activities.

The Color Game

Start with a color. Go around the room as fast as you can for each person to name something that is that color, allowing no more than three seconds to think. If a person cannot name something, they’re out of that round. Play until you have a winner for each color.

This game promotes quick thinking and creativity, something your social service workers can utilize in their everyday lives.

Team Building Activities for Social Service Workers

John Wayne

Have someone think of a famous person (start with John Wayne). The next person has to come up with a famous name that uses either John or Wayne in the first or last place (John Legend or Elton John) The next person can use any of the names the last person did. Keep going until someone gets stuck. Names cannot be used more than once.

This icebreaker challenge is fun, challenging, and fast-paced and helps sharpen your team’s reflexes.

The Question Game

Large groups should be separated into small groups, each group seated in a circle. 

Next, one person will point to someone in the group and ask a question. That person doesn’t answer, instead, they point to someone else and ask them another question (and so on).

You Are Out If…  

  1. You answer the question (that is asked of you)
  2. You repeat a question (that’s already been asked)
  3. You hesitate more than 3 seconds before asking a question
  4. You ask your question to the person who just asked you. 

Once out, players take a seat. The last person left standing wins!

This game is a great introduction to your team building session. This game, though passive, requires some quick thinking and fast reactions, which are sure to amp up your team for the activities that follow.

Collaborative Games

Collaborative games are the meat and potatoes of any team building session. Whether it’s field game competitions or something more out-of-the-box, we’ve got loads of suggestions! The following are a few of our top choices for social service workers.

Team Building for Social Services: Games & Activities

Frankenstein Banana

To begin, ask your team to peel and cut up a banana into equal parts. Once they’re fun, tell them they must put the banana back together using toothpicks and/or tape. Award teams for the best reconstruction, most stable finished product, or most creative.

This game inspires communication and creativity, things your social service team can use in their daily work.  

Cup Stack Relay

Line two teams up next to each other with a table a few feet from the starting line. Each team has 15 cups stacked up like a pyramid. The first player will run to the table and then collapse the pyramid so that all the cups now sit inside each other. The player will then proceed to restack all the cups back into the pyramid formation before running back to their team for the next player to do the same. The first team to run through all their players wins. 

This game promotes physical activity, something that is important for anyone who works at a desk. So, too, does it inspire teamwork and team bonding.

Blow Me Down!

Form two teams each at opposite ends of a table with hands held behind their backs and place a ping pong ball in the middle of the table. Teams must then try to blow the ball off the other team’s side of the table. Whoever lands the ball on the other’s side wins the round!

This game can be modified to be a Minute to Win It style game, where teams have just 60 seconds to try and budge the ball towards the others’ end of the table. This game is not just fun, but it serves to promote team bonding and foster connections between players.

Sticky Balloons

To start, each team wraps a player in tape, sticky side out. Then, the other members must blow up balloons and get them to stick to the player. PPlayers have just five minutes to inflate and apply balloons. Once the timer goes off, the team with the most balloons applied wins the challenge!

This game promotes teamwork, collaboration, and unity, skills your social service team can take back to the office long after the event ends.

Team Building Ideas for Social Service Workers

Nature Scavenger Hunt

For those who work in office buildings, having a chance to reconnect with nature is always valuable. For a nature scavenger hunt, task your team with finding and photographing specific plants, animals, or natural objects of a specific color or shape. Using tablets to guide your team makes this game more efficient and fun. This collaborative game can be played with both small and large teams, as we go into in our article about team sizes.

This game promotes team bonding, communication, and problem solving skills while also allowing your team to connect with the world around them.

Planning the Perfect Event for Social Services Team Building

If you’re looking to plan an event with tailored social services team building activities, you’ve come to the right place! Our picnic managers have worked planning events with plenty of focus on team building for countless industries. We find the best team building activities are those personalized to the team attending. For a personalized recommendation, simply fill out the form below. Our picnic coordinators are here to collaborate with you!