All about Virtual Coffee Breaks

The term ‘zoom fatigue’ has been doing rounds in the market since the onset of the pandemic. Though many people don’t believe it to be real, working professionals have to deal with it daily. Companies around the globe have finally started acknowledging it and are taking steps to keep their employees happy and refreshed. One such initiative is ‘virtual coffee breaks.’

What is a virtual coffee break?

You can think of a virtual coffee break as an informal chat or discussion with colleagues, clients, or peers from your work. One of the best times that one used to have while working in the office was having a coffee and chit-chat session with his/her fellow employees. This one ritual was something we would look forward to every single day. Since the coronavirus decided to jump in and disturb almost everything, most businesses are currently operating virtually. Not being able to interact with colleagues physically and working from home is taking a toll on the mental health of the working professionals. Where the world is dependent on virtual meeting platforms, virtual coffee meetings give people an additional opportunity to connect and interact with each other.

What are the benefits of virtual coffee meetings?

Here are some virtual coffee break benefits that would help you get a better understanding of virtual coffee breaks-

  • Take a break from continuous work- If you often find yourself surrounded by the never-ending work, virtual coffee breaks are an amazing way to actually get up from your desk and take a stroll around. Also, as an employer, schedule a 20-30 minute break on your employees’ calendars so that they can take a break from the endless amount of files.
  • Socializing- Though you connect with your colleagues daily in meeting rooms and can also discuss your life there, that time is precisely reserved for work. Long gone are the days where you would exchange hi’s and hello’s with your office peers in the pantry. Virtual coffee breaks allow you to dedicate a fixed time slot for these sorts of social interactions. They are the virtual ‘water cooler breaks’ that tend to create a healthy social environment at work.
  • Employees feel looked after- People have been reportedly having low morale, owing to the complexities on the personal and professional front. Another Virtual coffee break benefit is that  such team bonding activities are organised to make your employees feel supported. It also shows that their employers care for them and don’t consider them as machines.
  • Boost Face to Face interactions between managers and employees- When working with a big team, the manager can’t look after each employee. As a manager, you should ask your employees if they are facing any trouble in the office. Addressing these issues in a group meeting won’t be appropriate. Breaks like virtual coffee meetings are an excellent way to get in touch with your employees and listen to their problems. It will deepen the bond you share with your employees.
  • Refresh Minds- The coffee breaks are just meant for you, and it depends on how you’d spend the duration. Engage in discussions with your employees about your favorite sport or the show you watched last night. The idea behind such breaks is to let the employees take their minds off work and feel refreshed.

What are some virtual coffee break ideas?

Following discussed are some interesting virtual coffee break ideas to host fun and engaging online coffee breaks-

  1. Meditation- It’s always a good idea to disconnect from the world for a while and enter the silence. Utilize those 20-30 minutes to have a guided meditation. Either anyone of your team members who has experience can take the lead, or you can always rely on YouTube. It won’t only relax you but also make your time mindful and enhance self-awareness. Apart from that, the benefits of meditating are well known and don’t need special light.

2. Workout Session- You can also utilize those 30 minutes of your break in working out with your teammates. Incorporating exercise into your daily routine has uncountable advantages, and we will talk about them later. But for now, exercising with your teammates can enhance team bonding. Encourage your employees to take part in such team workout sessions. Working continuously for long hours on computers can have adverse effects on your health. In that case, doing intense exercise for even a few minutes can get your heart rates up and increase productivity.

3. Dance Party- Do you need any reason to dance? No, right! A break doesn’t mean you have to indulge in some awkward conversation with your peers. Instead of forcing a conversation, why not have a mini dance party with colleagues? Keep it fun and dance the way you want. Your moves don’t have to be perfect. Start with your small group, and people will join you midway. A small dance session will bring in a sudden rush of energy and will refresh your team more than a cup of coffee ever could.

4. Quizzes- Another engaging virtual coffee break idea that will help your employees feel refreshed is hosting quizzes. Decide on a particular theme and host a quiz among your peers. To encourage them to participate, you can announce offers and prizes. These activities won’t only increase active participation among your colleagues but also allow you to have discussions and gain knowledge. Various online meeting platforms like Dreamcast come with quiz features that help you host quizzes smoothly.

5. Divide colleagues on the basis of interests- Rather than hosting activities for a larger group, you can divide your colleagues into small groups based on their interests. It will enable them to have conversations on their favorite topics with like-minded people. People can discuss cricket matches or work on new strategies. Some can have their workout sessions, while others can have a gossip session. The idea behind hosting a virtual coffee break is to allow your employees to take a break from the monotony of work life.

Apart from the above discussed virtual coffee break ideas, below we have shared some tips you should consider while hosting a virtual coffee meet for your colleagues-

  1. The ideal duration for a virtual coffee break should be around 15-30 minutes. Time below 15 minutes is too less, and above 30 minutes can stretch conversations.
  2. Some online event platforms provide breakout room features that make it very convenient for organizers to host virtual coffee meets for employees.
  3. It is advisable to host at least one small coffee break in 60 minutes.

Working in an office among your colleagues and working in PJs are two completely different things. Indeed working from home comes with various benefits, but it is anything but less tiring. To make sure your employees work with a refreshed mind, provide them with frequent small breaks in the form of virtual coffee breaks.

Get in touch with an expert online meeting platform- Dreamcast, that will help you host virtual coffee meetings seamlessly and make work from home a happy and exciting experience.

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