While I love working remotely (no commute, more savings and a huge productivity jump!); I sometimes miss the serendipitous conversations at the office. You know the feeling of bumping into a colleague in the hall, and having a random fun conversation? I think such unplanned conversations are an important part of team building. While building Kaapi, I have come across a bunch of other tools that also do Icebreakers, and hence I wanted to compile the best of them for you.
1 - Kaapi
While I am biased about this one (I built Kaapi, heh!), I love our Icebreakers feature and use it regularly within our own team. And it’s super simple to set up too. Once switched on, Kaapi will send one fun water-cooler conversation a week to your team. When somebody answers, everyone is notified and it becomes a new thread for everyone to participate in.
You can create your own custom questions, remove the ones you don’t like and also see the next 5 upcoming questions. If you like, you can also change the frequency and timings of these questions. If a team member doesn’t answer an Icebreaker question, you can also instruct Kaapi to send them a reminder nudge!
2 - Icebreakers from Larkapps (only Slack)
This is one of the original Icebreaker apps on Slack, and the team has slowly introduced many other employee engagement games like Trivia, Onboarding etc. It is really simple to set up. You simply install the Slack app in your workspace and the app will send random Icebreaker questions to your team members during the week.
Once they answer, those are posted to a public Slack channel as a new thread!
A new twist on the classic Icebreaker app style, with videos! This app became really popular in 2020, during the Covid-19 lockdowns. You can create a set time, topic and group members for the fun event. And then start games and activities that the group can do together!
People are matched in a group of 2-3, then Icebreaker styled questions are shown to them as cards on the video screen. People then take turns to answer the questions and have fun.
While this one is not really an app, I have still included it in the list for its ease of use and simplicity! You can browse through their huge library of questions, which is split into categories like for adults, small groups and remote teams etc. Check out the random Icebreaker generator for fast fun!
5 - Know Your Team
Claire and team have really inspired us while building Kaapi! Their features are always well thought through, and a delight to use. Their Icebreaker questions are called “Social questions”, and can also be answered by new team members in one go to showcase to the team.
Looks like they also have a simple Slack integration to post Icebreaker answers on Slack channels.
6 - Range
A neat little side project by the Range team that shows one random Icebreaker question at a team! If you want to have some fun during a meeting, simply open the link above and get started. You can do slight personalization by choosing the kind of questions you want e.g. intro, tricky etc
7 - Friday
While this is a fairly new feature in their toolkit, I really liked how they have implemented it. Looks like the entire app is built around templates, which can then be sent at a recurring frequency to your team member e.g. daily standups, pulse surveys etc. Icebreakers is a new power up in your account which can be switched on to send such questions to your team!
8 - Chatfox (only Slack)
Looks like a very powerful tool where you can add your own custom questions, and send as many questions to different channels! You can also see someone’s profile with their past answers to get a good idea of what your team members like and don’t like. Maybe a perfect way to research for that Secret Santa, gift eh?
9 - Teambuddy (only Slack)
This app also wants to double as a team directory, and whenever someone’s answer an Icebreaker question, it gets attached to their profile. Sounds simple! But the developer has not updated the team in recent times, so it might not be very well maintained.
10 - Snack (only Slack)
Another video app that has been around for some time! Once the tool is installed in your Slack workspace, the app will encourage virtual video meetings between your coworkers. During the meeting, the app will nudge both parties with fun Icebreaker questions!