120 Team Building Ice Breaker Questions for Work

This is not your average list of ice breaker questions for work. We’ve collected dozens of the best ice breakers and check in questions to ask your team to reveal their unique personalities and encourage participation at work in meetings and workshops. These ice breaker questions are split into three difficulty levels: mild, medium and hot. Inside, you’ll find funny ice breakers, awkward ice breakers, professional ice breakers, interesting ice breakers and ice breakers for adults.

Mild Ice Breakers 🌶️ are easy questions with a comfort level of 100; it’s the small chat you’d make with a new acquaintance at a party. Examples include: “what do you do?”, “where are you from?” and “what’s your favourite drink?” These ice breaker questions should seek out factual answers, items that participants quickly have an answer to and don’t reveal too much personal information. The overall goal is for these questions to be quick and fun.

Medium Ice Breakers 🌶️🌶️ are still relatively easy questions to answer but with a comfort level of 75; for groups in a business setting that already know each other, this should be the default difficulty level. Examples of medium questions include: “what do you usually eat for lunch?”, “what was your best vacation ever?” and “which superpower would you want and why?” These questions show opinions and viewpoints on relatively trivial topics, and in doing so reveal your employees’ unique personality traits and what makes them weird. Throughout your activity or event, participants will use these answers as talking points to start new conversations and build closer relationships.

Hot Ice Breakers 🌶️🌶️🌶️ are difficult questions with a comfort level of 0 to 75; which means they may be inappropriate or awkward in a business setting except for with the closest of teams. If you are already a strong medium, you can consider experimenting with some lower friction hot ice breakers to get to the next level. Examples of these difficult questions include: “what is something that frustrates you?”, “what is a mission or cause that you support?” and “what do you think is the biggest factor holding our company back?” These questions probe team members for their personal thoughts and perspectives that require a high level of trust to work with.

Alright, here is the list of ice breakers!

Mild Ice Breakers 🌶️

  1. What did you eat for breakfast? It could be eggs, toast, congee, “I don’t eat breakfast” or countless other options.
  2. What is your role in the company? Everyone is invited to share a little bit more about what they do.
  3. What are your favourite pizza toppings? From pepperoni to olives, every ingredient is valid.
  4. Can you speak any other languages? Parlez-vous français? 你会中文吗?
  5. Where were you born? Less sensitive to answer than its close relative, “when were you born?”
  6. Which season is your favourite? Some people actually love winter, but for the rest of us there is spring, summer and fall.
  7. Have you ever traveled outside of the country? The U.S., Canada, and Mexico count!
  8. Do you play any sports? There are the typical answers like basketball, soccer, and baseball; but maybe there is a cricket player or pole vaulter among you.
  9. Do you have any pets? A gold fish counts.
  10. Are you allergic to anything? Always good information to know.
  11. What did you dress up as for last Halloween? Hopefully appropriate answers, get ideas for next year!
  12. Do you have any Christmas traditions? Italian families make seven-fish Christmas Eve dinners, some people get new pajamas, and others make special baked goods.
  13. Do you play any musical instruments? Singing counts.
  14. Do you know any good jokes? Or corny dad jokes, everyone loves a good dad joke.
  15. What was the last movie you attended? Another way to find out if your co-workers have kids.
  16. Where did you grow up? Learn about growing up in a different part of the country, or even the world!
  17. Have you ever met a celebrity? Participants may have great stories of how they randomly ran into Tom Cruise or Jennifer Aniston.
  18. Do you have any siblings? Take this opportunity to explain your competitive nature.
  19. What college did you attend? You may meet a fellow alumni from your alma mater.
  20. What did you study in college? You never know if people switched fields!
  21. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grow up? Are you living out your dream? Are you being a Princess? A Cowboy?
  22. Did you have an imaginary friend as a child? This is a sure way to bring up some great childhood stories.
  23. What book are you currently reading? Discuss your current book and maybe get some suggestions for your next great read.
  24. Have you ever broken a bone? If yes, then follow up with the story!
  25. Do you make your bed in the morning? Some people feel very strongly about this.
  26. How many pairs of shoes do you own? A minimalist may only have 2 pairs whereas a fashionista may own 30+.
  27. Have you ever been in a car accident? Hopefully it is a ‘No!’
  28. What is your Starbucks Order? Holiday drinks included.
  29. What is the farthest distance you have driven? Participants may have moved cross country or only to the other side of the state if they hate driving.
  30. How many books did you read last year? No shame if it was zero, just say you were busy working!

Medium Ice Breakers 🌶️🌶️

  1. What’s your favourite show on Netflix? It doesn’t have to be Netflix, but everyone can relate to a good show.
  2. What book would you recommend other people read? Goosebumps! Hardy Boys! Berenstain Bears! Each Peach Pear Plum! Love You Forever!
  3. Would you prefer luxury beach vacations or backpacking? Believe it or not, some folks prefer squeaky hostel beds and local street vendors over five star amenities.
  4. What was your first job? Whether delivering newspapers, babysitting or tutoring math; everyone got their start somewhere.
  5. What is something you are looking forward to? An upcoming anniversary, a new pet or just being able to hang out on the weekend. This ice breaker is also an exercise in positive thinking.
  6. Has your taste in music changed in the last 10 years? Some people will be rocking the 80s forever, but for the rest of us there is Lady Gaga, Bruno Mars and the Pentatonix.
  7. What is something you do that you don’t like to do? Nobody likes taking out the garbage, except racoons.
  8. What is your favourite fast food restaurant? Chipotle, In-N-Out, and Panda Express to name a few.
  9. Who is the greatest cook you know? It could be their mom or maybe their partner makes an excellent risotto.
  10. Do you have a favourite sports team? Any sport! Any team! Maybe you only watch sports every four years at the Olympics, that is ok as well.
  11. What board game are you unbeatable at? Some people excel at Monopoly or a secret strategy Ticket To Ride, what’s yours?
  12. Are you artistic? This is a great open question that allows for all sort of creativity to be expressed!
  13. Do you prefer wine or beer and why? Merlot, Riesling, IPA, or Amber?
  14. Do you enjoy cooking or baking? Not all cooks are bakers and not all bakers are cooks.
  15. What game show do you think you could win? A lot of people have a knack for trivia and can master endless Jeopardy rounds.
  16. If you won the lottery and you had to spend the money on yourself, how would you spend it? Cars, gambling, houses, vacations, time to dream big!
  17. Are you a more Type A or Type B person? You could be a Type B in a sea of Type A’s.
  18. What is your favourite app? If you would like, make it more specific like gaming app or productivity app.
  19. If you had to move to another country, where would you move? Find out how adventurous your co-workers are.
  20. What is your favorite Christmas movie? There are tons of Christmas movies, which one really gets you in the Christmas mood?
  21. Do you prefer to work in an office or from home? Discover more about your coworker’s working style. Do they tend to get distracted more at work or at home?
  22. What is your cocktail of choice? There is nothing wrong with vodka cranberries!
  23. What food can you not stand? Take note of what your boss says for the next potluck.
  24. What is the greatest gift you have ever received? This could be a bike they received when they were a kid or a puppy their significant other gave them!
  25. Are you a dog or car person? This may be a bit polarizing, proceed with caution.
  26. Do you have any pet peeves? This is a great opportunity to subtly give one of your coworkers a heads up.
  27. Is there a dish you cook exceptionally well? Some people can cook up a mean stir fry or are hold a masters in grilling.
  28. Who is your least favorite actor? Many people prefer a movie without Nicolas Cage or Anne Hathaway, bond over your dislike of bad acting!
  29. Do you work better in the morning or at night? Figure out when people are the most productive.
  30. What is something you would like to learn? This could be a sport, instrument, or hobby.
  31. Do you have any short term goals? What are you looking to achieve within the next year? It could be a promotion, side project, or weight loss.
  32. What time period could you see yourself living in? Some people feel they were born in the wrong era, looking to embrace their inner 1920’s glam or 60’s Twiggy.
  33. Which is typically better, the book or the movie? Some people prefer more detailed stories, others love the cinema magic!
  34. What are you the biggest fan of? Sports, movies, music….what subject do you know all about?
  35. Do you have a favourite childhood video game? Did you play Sims, Mario Kart, or Doom when you were a kid? Some participants may have never played video games!
  36. What is one place you have always wanted to visit? Your top bucket list location, this can be Hawaii, Thailand, Iceland, or the moon for the dreamers.
  37. What is your go to movie theater snack? Some people cannot watch a movie without buttery popcorn, chocolate, or a soda.
  38. If you could drive any car, what car would you drive? Your boss may have a dream of driving a convertible corvette down PCH or a VW bus across Route 66.
  39. What is your favorite work lunch? Some of us like PB&J and leftovers, others like to get creative with Bento Box lunches.
  40. Do you enjoy rollercoasters? If yes, what is the best roller coaster you have been on?
  41. What would you pick to add to your coffee, Baileys, Amaretto, or Whisky? Add a little kick to your coffee.
  42. Do you prefer to dance in the rain or stay cozy inside? Participants may prefer to stay warm inside while others are carefree and can stand the cold!
  43. What is the best Tv show of all time? Friends, Lost, Breaking Bad, and Survivor to name a few.
  44. What is your favourite baked good? Cake, cupcakes, cookies, pastries, I’m hungry!
  45. If you could act in any movie, what movie would you be in? Wish you could have been Rose in Titanic? Maybe you would have stuck up for Leo and let him on the door.
  46. Say you were given a kitten, what would you name him/her? Fido, Muffins, Mr. Theodore, or Killer…
  47. What is your favorite scent? Lavender, coconut, and fresh laundry are a few popular options.
  48. If you created a photo calendar, what photo would you put for November? It can be any month!
  49. What has been on your ‘to-do’ list the longest? Has it taken you forever to get that chair fixed change the oil in your car? What are you procrastinating at?
  50. What do you enjoy most about the holidays? Family, hot chocolate, good food, Christmas lights or are you the Grinch?
  51. Where would you love to go for a relaxing holiday? The caribbean, Hawaii, a cruise, the mountains, or just stay at home!?
  52. What is the best hotel you have ever stayed at? Visit an overwater villa in the Pacific? Or a cozy log cabin in the mountains that felt right at home?
  53. If you could collect anything, what would it be? Cars, postcards, expensive shoes, art…
  54. What is your favourite local joint? Do you enjoy the mom and pop Italian place down the street? Or an ice cream parlor that is your towns biggest secret?
  55. What is your favourite store? Target, Costco, Forever 21, GameStop, where can we find you?
  56. Do you prefer team or individual sports? This could be very telling about a person’s personality.
  57. What is the best concert you have ever been to? Participants may have seen an amazing local band or really enjoyed seeing Beyonce with thousands of other people, take your pick!
  58. If you could add anything to the office what would it be? This could be exciting, maybe it is a keurig, nap room, standing desk, or vending machine.
  59. Assuming you have an office with a view, what would you want the view to be of? It would be nice if we all could have an office with a view so what would you pick, a beach view, your city of choice on the 80th floor, or rolling mountains?
  60. What has been the best team building event you have been to? Either get some new ideas or revisit the event in future years!
  61. What fashion trend needs to end now? Before you admit to hating man buns make sure no one is rocking one in the room.
  62. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? Hopefully everyone in your office is up to date.
  63. If you could start any business in the world, what would you start? Assuming money is not an issue; this could be in the restaurant, non-profit, car industry, or the next Target!
  64. What do you cover your frozen yogurt with? Are you more of a fruit and nuts or cookie dough and brownie person?
  65. What was your favourite class in college? It is ok if it has nothing to do with your current field!
  66. If given the opportunity, would you go to space? Think you could handle it or does the idea make you moon-sick?
  67. What is your preferred jelly bean flavor? Buttered popcorn! Melon! Blueberry!
  68. Name a piece of technology you wish existed. Could be anything from hover cars to time machines.
  69. Is a hot dog a sandwich? Let the debate begin!
  70. What is your favourite quote? Anyone from Shakespeare to Coco Chanel, who moves you?

Hot Ice Breakers 🌶️🌶️🌶️

  1. What is something that frustrates you at work? Eek! The truth can hurt and the truth can set you free. Ask this question to learn what’s really up at the office.
  2. Do you support any charities? This question can reveal some of your team’s’ most intimate beliefs.
  3. Where do you picture yourself five years from now? Add a disclaimer to improve the comfort level: “we know and support that not everyone plans to stick with us for life.”
  4. Is there a habit you want to change? Quitting smoking, jogging, going to bed earlier; everyone has a habit they want to change.
  5. Are you close with your family? This can be an opportunity for people to talk about their family or dodge the question.
  6. What is your favourite place on the planet? It may be a favourite vacation spot or their home town. It can be anywhere they have fond memories!
  7. Do you have any hidden talents? Maybe you are working among people that can hula, juggle, or do impressive Yo-yo tricks.
  8. How do you spend your weekends? Some people enjoy relaxing outside while others enjoy taking weekend trips.
  9. Would you describe yourself as a clean or messy person? Find out who’s car you want to be in for the next lunch outing.
  10. What management style do you prefer? Some people respond better to detailed managers while others prefer a more general approach.
  11. What sort of physical exercise do you enjoy? Some people enjoy cardio, strength, yoga, or even just a walk in the park.
  12. Do you prefer to receive recognition in public or private? Always good information to know about the people you are managing. Different employees prefer their office to know about their good work or is an e-mail just fine.
  13. Do you consider yourself a trusting person? Trust, is it earned or given freely?
  14. Do you prefer to avoid or confront conflict? You may already know the answer from some of your coworkers.
  15. How do you feel is the best way to overcome challenges in life? There are plenty of resources people turn to. It may be religion, family, or even work!
  16. What is the most adventurous thing you have done? Has someone in your office gone bungee jumping, skydiving, or scuba diving? For some people simply flying on an airplane is adventurous!
  17. What book do you wish you could read for the first time again? Wish you could revisit the joy of reading Harry Potter for the first time or the thrill of 1984?
  18. What is the strangest food you have eaten? Escargot, foie gras, vegemite, or balut to name a few.
  19. Do you have a guilty pleasure? Bad reality TV, fried oreos, or eating fried oreos while watching bad reality TV…
  20. What do you enjoy most about your job? Is it the people, flexible hours, or perks? Be worried if they cannot come up with an answer…Uh oh.
  21. What is the greatest lesson you learned from your parents? It can be something simple like the golden rule or advice on how to handle a bully.
  22. What is your favorite photograph? It could be professional or personal. It may be of your passed pet, your parents, or the V-J Day Kiss photo.
  23. What is the best date you have been on? Lovely dinner then a long walk on the beach maybe or wine tasting and drive through the countryside.
  24. In high school did you receive a superlative? Did you receive most likely to succeed? Maybe it was best smile or best eyes.
  25. What is the best way to get over a breakup? Fried oreos and bad reality TV?
  26. What has been the best day of your life, so far? For some it will be a wedding or a birth, others may remember when they got their first bike or graduated from college.
  27. What has been the greatest accomplishment of your career? This can be especially interesting for the more seasoned participants.
  28. What do you want to do when you retire? It is finally time to write your memoir or travel the country in an RV!
  29. Do you have any tattoos? You can just skip this question if you work at a tattoo parlor.
  30. Use one word to describe your childhood bedroom. It could be pink, cars, Hawaiian, or Star Wars (still counts as one word).

Benefits of Ice Breaker Questions

When your team gets together for meetings, training, workshops or team building, it’s important that they take an active role in the activity. One of the greatest challenges for meeting planners to overcome is creating a collaborative and safe environment where all participants can share openly with the others. A quick round of ice breakers is a great way to… break the ice!

Here are some of the main benefits of including quick ice breakers in your activity:

  • Increase the individual comfort level with speaking to a larger group.
  • Create “talking points” that will connect participants and help them bond over common interests.
  • Improve engagement by making everyone part of the learning process.
  • Builds trust between all levels of staff and management.
  • Gives employees a chance to relax and discuss non-work related subjects.
  • Gain ideas about future team building events based on employees interests.
  • Allows people to see a different side of participants they otherwise would have never seen.

Ice breaker questions have dozens of benefits for your organization, but not every ice breaker is created equal. Choose the best ice breaker questions that are a match for your team and you will quickly notice a positive change in team dynamics.