5 Communications Tricks to Raise Team ‘Spirits’ on Halloween

3 min read

October 24, 2022

Remote working solutions have increased business productivity in so many ways. Flexibility to work from anywhere and constant access across multiple devices reduces operational friction and helps teams accomplish more.

But there’s more to a human team than productivity. Spontaneous expression and memorable moments bring people together and build team and company culture.

How can you help your remote team keep that human element alive throughout the workday?

An easy trick is built into unified communications and collaboration tools: emojis, GIFs, and other graphics can be added to daily communications with one click. If you’re not already using them, this Halloween might be the right time to try creative communications. In the US, 63 % of adults report liking the holiday, so there’s a good chance your team will happily join in the fun if spooky scenes and ghoulish graphics pop up when and where they least expect it.

Read on for five fun ideas you and your team can implement on any device.

1. Versatile Emojis 🎃

It may have once been a teen thing, but today, the emoji is ubiquitous in online communications. More than 20 years ago, a Japanese mobile phone carrier designer created a set of 176 characters for patrons to convey ideas quickly. He called them “picture characters” in Japanese – emoji. In 2011, Apple added an emoji keyboard to iOS, and Android followed soon after. According to Unicode, 92% of the world’s online population uses emojis.

Emojis are open to interpretation – and that’s part of the fun. Check out the Halloween-themed characters in your apps. Their versatility may surprise you. The jack-o-lantern makes an excellent substitute for the crying-with-joy emoji, for example. You might chuckle if you send someone a casket at the end of a long meeting or use a ghost emoji to start a message filling in someone absent.

Some collaboration software and tools have an emoji keyboard built-in, making it easy to find a perfect Halloween-themed emoji to liven up your next message with a colleague who may be working in another city.

2. Moving GIFs

Mitel Halloween Gif

If a little cartoon character says a thousand words, how many can a short video clip say? The GIF’s appeal lies in its blend of pop culture and poetry, reflecting the current zeitgeist and succinctly conveying complex emotions simultaneously.

The GIF was initially developed to display images using as little memory as possible. Over time, other graphic file formats we know, and love emerged for still imagery, but PNG, JPG, and TIF can’t do what GIF can with animation, and the GIF still reigns supreme for video clips online.

Now it’s as simple as typing an expression into a GIF keyboard search bar to find the perfect GIF to convey an idea with a little extra personality. It might be fun to startle your coworkers by signing off with the creepy blank stare of everyone’s least favorite clown. Lighten the mood with a lanky skeleton in a black suit if you work out a tricky problem during a video conference. When someone signs on late for a meeting, greet them with a kid from Peanuts yearning for the Great Pumpkin

3. Universal Memes

Mitel Halloween meme pumpkin head

Like GIFs, online memes enhance expression and tap into pop culture. A meme is defined by its universal familiarity, and using memes in workplace communications can instantly give people common ground in conversation.

There are, of course, memes so popular they’ve become part of the modern lexicon. You can encourage your hybrid team and get a laugh by celebrating a minor accomplishment with the success kid meme. But there’s no need to stop there! A quick internet search for “Halloween memes” will surely deliver a funny way to share your thoughts with seasonal tropes everyone relates to, regardless of location.

You could start the first team conversation in October with a strait-laced pumpkin head to prepare everyone for a season of silly communications. If things get too rambunctious, chill everyone out with a somber Wednesday Adams meme.

4. Virtual Parties

Mitel Virtual Halloween Party

Makeup, masks, animal ears, wigs – some of the best parts of Halloween costumes are worn from the shoulders up. Set aside time for the team to show their creativity and host a costume party via video conference. It’s a great way to increase engagement among hybrid teams and add a more human (and less zombie-like) element to remote team dynamics.

Here are some activity ideas for a successful remote party:

  • Have a costume contest: most creative, scariest, most realistic
  • Carve pumpkins together step-by-step
  • Choose your favorite spooky movie clips and present them over shared screens
  • Have a scary story contest
  • Send everyone a different Halloween bingo card to print or play on screen
  • Mail everyone a goody bag in advance and snack as you party

5. Riveting Scenes

Mitel Powering Connections Buffy

If your unified communications and collaboration software has a virtual background feature, set a background scene with a Halloween theme; no costumes are required! Discussing weekly goals on a pirate ship or inside a haunted castle may add the proper levity to your next meeting.

Whether a simple emoji or a virtual party, creative communications can be fun and easy, especially when using enterprise collaboration software that allows seamless and continuous access for your remote and hybrid workers. As you communicate with your team this fall, keep that human element alive with shared experiences and memorable moments across all channels and devices.

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