How much does a polar bear weigh? Enough to break the ice.
Despite what you might think, ice breaker questions really don’t have to be lame.
If you have recently started working remotely and are still getting used to virtual meetings and work from anywhere philosophy, ice breaker questions might be a welcome and fun way to ease the participants into the meeting.
And, as usual, we got your back!
In this blog post, we dive deep into the topic of ice breakers and answering questions like:
- What are ice breaker questions?
- What are the top ice breaker questions for any occasion?
- How to run effective ice breaker sessions?
- Why do we need ice breakers for virtual meetings?
On top of that, we’ll give you a list of 200+ ice breaker questions.
So, let’s break that ice!
Table of Contents
Ice breaker questions are quick questions designed to help ease any tension among the meeting participants.
These questions should be engaging and inspiring, and they should become a standard part of your virtual meeting routine.
However, the ice breaker portion of the meeting should not last longer than 5 minutes — no one likes it when meetings (virtual or in-person) drag on for more than necessary.
If you want to ease tensions at the beginning of your virtual meeting and get your team to know each other better, consider the following ice breaker questions for your next virtual meeting.
- What is your proudest achievement?
- What are the 3 things that make you happy?
- How would your friends describe you in 3 words?
- What was the best day of your life?
- What was your dream job as a kid?
- What is your hobby?
- What is the first item on your bucket list?
- What was your very first job?
- How many countries have you visited?
- Who inspires you?
Introducing humor and fun at the beginning of your meeting is a great way to break the ice and make participants more engaged.
If you want your team members to come together and warm up the atmosphere, take a look at fun ice breaker questions you can use in your next virtual meeting.
- What is your favorite emoji?
- What superpower would you like to have?
- What is the first thing you would do if you were invisible?
- Do you believe in aliens?
- What was the worst haircut you ever had?
- What is your best Halloween costume so far?
- What did 18-year-old you think you would be doing now?
- What is the most embarrassing thing you’ve ever done?
- Which famous actor would play you in the movie of your life?
- Which horrible fashion trend do you like?
- How would you describe your job to someone who doesn’t understand it?
- What fictional world or place would you like to visit?
- Where do you prefer to sit on airplanes?
- What do you think you’re the best and worst at?
- If you had to sing one song at karaoke, what would it be?
- What’s your biggest irrational phobia and why?
- What is the worst advice you’ve followed?
- What’s your favorite way to recharge?
- What is the one sentence you’d like to hear from your manager?
- What do you wish was illegal?
If you need a unique and exciting way to introduce a new team member, look no further than these casual ice breakers for virtual meetings.
They will help you get your teammates to open up while discussing simple topics and bonding.
- Are you a morning or an evening person?
- Are you a cat person or a dog person?
- Which fashion decade do you like the most?
- What does your dream house look like?
- What city would you like to live in for a year?
- Are you an extrovert or an introvert?
- Do you prefer smaller groups or larger crowds?
- What is your guilty pleasure?
- What is your favorite holiday?
- What is your favorite flower or plant?
- Do you prefer the seaside or the mountains?
- Do you collect anything?
- Who is the person from your childhood you admire the most?
- What is the sport you don’t understand the rules to?
- What’s your favorite sport?
- What is the farthest you have traveled?
- How many cities have you lived in?
- What is the most beautiful place within a 30-minute drive from your home?
- What is your favorite piece of clothing?
- What do you like to do on rainy days?
- What is your favorite website or blog to visit in your free time?
What better way to bond with your coworkers than over a common favorite movie or a band? You might even end up going to a concert or movies together!
So here’s the list of ice breakers you might want to try out with your team in your next virtual meeting:
- With what famous person would you like to get stuck in an elevator?
- What is your favorite book?
- Who is your favorite writer or poet?
- What is the last book you read?
- What movie would you recommend as your all-time favorite?
- Which movie that you love would you like to watch for the first time again?
- Which song that you love would you like to hear for the first time again?
- What TV program could you watch repeatedly?
- What is your favorite streaming service (Netflix, Disney+, HBO Max, Amazon, Hulu, etc.)?
- What is your favorite band?
- What is one song that you would never get tired of listening to?
- What was your favorite song in high school?
- What’s the last movie you saw?
- Who was your teenage celebrity crush?
- What kind of music did you listen to 10 years ago?
- What celebrity’s phone number would you like to get?
- What is your favorite guilty pleasure song?
- What is your favorite guilty pleasure movie?
- What is your favorite guilty pleasure TV show?
- What is your life’s theme song?
- What celebrity do you look like?
- Which sitcom would you like to play a role in?
- What are your favorite podcasts?
- Which famous person, dead or alive, would you like to have dinner with?
- Which movie title describes your life?
Regardless of the part of the world we live in, our favorite sports and movies, or our hobbies, all of us have something in common — we need food and water.
So, what better shortcut to finding common ground with our colleagues than over food and drinks?
For that quest, we have some questions that might give you a nudge in the right direction.
- What new ice cream flavor would you create if you could?
- Would you try a savory ice cream (e.g. tzatziki ice cream)?
- What is your favorite food?
- What’s your favorite dessert?
- What is your favorite drink?
- What’s your favorite meal?
- Are you a coffee or a tea person?
- Which nation, in your opinion, has the best cuisine?
- Do you like to cook?
- Do you like to bake?
- Do you prefer fruits or vegetables?
- Do you prefer wine or beer?
- What is your favorite spice?
- What is your favorite cocktail?
- Bacon or avocado?
- How do you like your eggs?
- Mashed potatoes or French fries?
- Pizza or pasta?
- What is your favorite comfort food?
- What is your favorite family recipe?
- Is there any food you hate, but everyone else loves?
If you need a little mental exercise at the beginning of your virtual meeting, why not grease the brain wheels with these thought-provoking ice breaker questions?
They might inspire your coworkers to think more creatively, which is proven to further increase their productivity.
- What century would you live in, if you could choose?
- Do you prefer the past or the future?
- If your life were turned into a movie, what genre would it be?
- What fictional family would you prefer to be a member of?
- What is something you absolutely need?
- What 3 things would you bring on a desert island with you?
- Which superpower is overrated?
- Which superpower is underrated?
- If you were a hero/heroine in a story, what tragic flaw would you have to overcome?
- What language would you like to speak as a mother tongue?
- In which country/state would you like to have been born?
- What assumptions do people usually make about you?
- What one item would you grab if your house burst into flames?
- What famous picture would you like to find yourself on?
- Would you say soap is clean or dirty?
- Who is the most interesting person you have ever met and had a conversation with?
- Who do you sometimes compare yourself to?
- What are you able to do now that you couldn’t a year ago?
- Which is worse — failing or never trying?
- What is your favorite sound?
- What will the world be like in 300 years, in your opinion?
- What would you purchase right away if you won the lottery?
- The year is 2050 and you’re writing your autobiography. What is the title?
- If you were not required to work, how would you spend your free time?
Ordinary questions don’t cut the mustard anymore?
Don’t worry, for those more adventurous among you, we have a special challenge.
Instead of awkward silence, try awkward ice breaker questions.
- What’s the strangest food you’ve ever eaten?
- What’s the strangest drink you’ve ever tried?
- What band or artist would you like to play at your funeral?
- What would someone who doesn’t know you think about you from looking at your trash?
- What’s the strangest food combination you enjoy that other people find repulsive?
- Who are 3 people you would want on your team in case of a zombie apocalypse?
- If aliens landed on our planet tomorrow and asked you to join them, would you go?
- If you had to eat nothing but pizza for the rest of your life, what toppings would you choose?
- What songs would be played repeatedly in hell?
- Would you rather wear dirty socks for a month or dirty underwear for a week?
- What smell do you hate but others don’t mind?
- Would you rather be sweaty forever or itchy forever?
- What would you eat as your final supper if you were on death row?
- What person(s) would you torment if you were a ghost?
- Can you show us your phone wallpaper?
- Can you show us your playlist history (on Spotify, YouTube, Apple Music, etc.)?
Another fun way to start virtual meetings is with a set of “Would you rather” questions.
By giving the participants two options to choose from, these questions offer a more structured beginning to this warm-up activity.
If you’re a fan of somewhat tough and weird questions, this is the question set for you and your team.
- Would you rather give up candy or salty snacks?
- Would you rather drink lemonade instead of water for the rest of your life or eat fish instead of bread?
- Would you rather live in a perpetual winter or a perpetual summer?
- Would you rather read quickly or write quickly?
- Would you rather be invisible or immortal?
- Would you rather live underwater (in a submarine) or in a spaceship?
- Would you rather give up Instagram or Netflix?
- Would you rather have telekinesis or telepathy?
- Would you rather your friends be able to read your thoughts or have access to your Internet history?
- Would you rather lose your sense of smell or your hearing?
- Would you rather live a long boring life or a short amazing life?
- Would you rather have the power to fly or teleport yourself?
- Would you rather travel to the North Pole or Australia?
- Would you rather travel the world or live in your dream house?
- Would you rather be mega rich or have superpowers?
- Would you rather be on a diet for the rest of your life or live without the internet?
- Would you rather be a vampire or a mermaid/merman?
- Would you rather eat an overcooked steak or eat overcooked pasta?
- Would you rather be able to spot any lie or get away with any lie you tell?
- Would you rather be the richest or the most intelligent person in the world?
- Would you rather be an Olympic medal winner or a Nobel Prize winner?
- Would you rather take a month-long vacation or have an extra day off every week?
- Would you rather master every musical instrument or every type of sport?
- Would you rather look strong and be weak or look weak and be strong?
- Would you rather travel to space or travel to the past?
- Would you rather be criticized or be ignored?
- Would you rather work more hours and have a short commute or work less hours and have a long commute?
- Would you rather be the most successful in your career field or celebrity famous?
- Would you rather be the funniest person or the smartest person in the room?
- Would you rather lose your passport or smartphone?
- Would you rather have the ability to forget anything you want or remember everything you’ve ever done?
- Would you rather take off Friday or Monday from the work calendar?
- Would you rather detect every lie you hear or get away with every lie you tell?
This set is for all of you who like hypothetical situations that make you think hard.
The weirder the question, the better — you might be surprised with what you’ll learn about your coworkers.
- If you could live anywhere on the planet, where would it be?
- If you could be any animal, which one would you be?
- If you could relive one year of your life, what year would you choose?
- If you could eat only one fruit for the rest of your life, what would it be?
- If you could instantly learn a language, what would it be?
- If you could instantly become an expert in something, what field would you choose?
- If you could retire tomorrow, where would you live?
- If you could clone yourself, what would you be doing right now?
- If you could eat anything from anywhere on the planet, what food would it be?
- If you could choose your own nickname, what would it be?
- If you could live in any TV show universe, which one would you prefer?
- If you could live on any planet, what would it be?
- If you could read just one person’s mind for a day, who would it be?
- If you could, would you have a personal trainer, chef, or housekeeper?
- If you could instantly become an expert in playing one instrument, what would it be?
- If you could have a song play any time you enter the room, what would it be?
- If you could change any historic event, what would it be?
- If you could rewrite the ending of a movie/book/TV show, what would it be?
- If you could have the credit for creating any piece of art, what would you choose?
- If you could go back in time, what would you tell your younger self?
A great way to help your remote team feel more connected is to ask virtual work ice breaker questions at the beginning of your meetings.
Whether your team has a fully remote or hybrid work model, these questions will help you break the ice in the beginning of the meeting and learn more about your team members’ motivation and attitudes.
- Do you prefer working from home or working from the office?
- Do you have a dedicated office space at home?
- Do you have a morning routine before starting work?
- How often do you get in touch with your teammates?
- What is the best part about working from home?
- What is the worst part about working from home?
- How does a remote working model affect your lifestyle?
- Are you usually able to stop working after working hours?
- What is your favorite remote communication method (emails, instant messaging, video calls, audio calls etc.)?
- Do you think you’re as productive working remotely as you’re working from an office?
- How would you make your week the most productive it can be?
It’s not enough to decide to incorporate ice breakers into your virtual meetings — you need to know how best to implement them.
So, here are 5 steps that will help you with your ice breaker sessions.
Don’t ambush your coworkers with (weird) ice breaker questions.
You don’t have to (and really shouldn’t) share the exact questions with your team beforehand — just make sure you put an ice breaker session action item at the beginning of the meeting agenda.
The best way to break the ice with your ice breakers is to lead by example and answer a question first.
By doing that, you’ll show your coworkers that you’re ready to get vulnerable, open, or even weird with them (depending on the ice breaker question).
It’s the quickest way to virtually bond with your colleagues.
After you have answered your question, feel free to call out the next person to answer one of the questions you’ve prepared.
You should start with easy, casual questions, and then go to the “heavy”, awkward ones, if the overall atmosphere allows it.
However, don’t forget to keep this part of the meeting short — not longer than 5 minutes.
If you allow the warm-up part to get out of your hands, you won’t be able to follow your meeting schedule, which might interrupt your daily activities.
In line with the previous step, to make your ice breaker sessions short, you have to divide your team into smaller groups (if it counts more than 15 members).
Otherwise, you’re running the risk of lengthening this warm-up session and, consequently, the meeting.
According to Pumble’s Meeting statistics (2023), professionals spend more than half of their workweek in meetings.
That is precisely why facilitators should make sure that their meetings are as palatable as possible — and this is where ice breakers come to the scene.
Ice breaker questions are important and useful in virtual meetings, especially for those who fear facilitating meetings.
Among other things, these fun questions at the beginning of a virtual meeting can help you:
- Ease any tensions,
- Overcome awkwardness in virtual meetings,
- Bond with your team during welcome meetings, training sessions, and events,
- Break down any communication barriers, and
- Warm up the atmosphere to engage every participant.
In addition, ice breaker questions improve creativity and help participants get to know each other better. After all, they are made to make people feel more connected.
Your next virtual meeting need not start in medias res.
Consider incorporating ice breaker questions into your meeting agenda, if you want to:
- Overcome the awkwardness of every meeting’s beginning,
- Bond with your coworkers,
- Create a relaxed atmosphere, and
- Ease any tensions.
We’ve even divided these ice breakers into categories, so you can more easily choose what suits your team’s sensibility.
So, next time you start your meeting, forget about those boring questions, such as How are you? or How was your weekend? and dive into this treasure trove of ice breakers.
✉️ What about you? Do you use ice breaker questions at the start of your virtual meetings? Do you have any questions you might add to our list? Share your experience and tips at email@example.com and we may include your answers in this or future posts. And, if you liked this blog post and found it useful, share it with someone you think would also benefit from it.