15 Virtual Diversity and Inclusion Activities to Create a Sense of Belonging

Diversity and inclusion team building activities for every member of your team. Plus, 10 free activities to promote inclusion in the workplace!

Laptop with dumbells, a yoga mat, apple, camera, and water bottle

Virtual offices and hybrid work scenarios can create even more opportunities for a diverse and inclusive workforce with people from all different backgrounds and cultures contributing to the bigger picture. 

Aspects like commute, location, and time commitment often hold people back from applying for jobs, making the talent pool smaller and less diverse. But because location isn’t a barrier for remote teams, you’re able to tap into opportunities others aren’t, like flexible schedules for working parents!

Workplaces that have a virtual or hybrid model are in a great position to increase their diversity and inclusion efforts greatly.

Why do DEI activities help people feel better at work?

DEI activities are just as great for team members as they are for the workplace as a whole. This is because people want to feel like they are seen, heard, and cared for in their workplace. 

More and more employees are seeking a workplace that takes care of them, promotes inclusion, and functions under the same values. For many employees, DEI is an incredibly important value, and activities that are centered around diversity and inclusion are a great way to show employees that your organization genuinely cares about DEI.

Generally, a company that doesn’t focus on DEI harms its employee engagement, leadership, and bottom line. On the other hand, diversity and inclusivity tend to bring people together for a happier, healthier, and more productive workplace.

In the end, when a company prioritizes DEI, everyone wins.

The top 5 best virtual diversity and inclusion activities

There are many diversity and inclusion activities that employers can introduce to their teams. The ones you select will ultimately depend on your team, your company culture, and the types of diversity and inclusion team building activities that interest the people who work for you

Some people connect through art, food, or conversation. Some prefer a hands-on activity. We recommend experimenting to see what your team members like best, and continuously introducing new activities and initiatives to your staff whenever possible.

1. DEI Conversations at Work

Topics like DEI can feel big and unapproachable to team members. Especially for people who have questions that they feel nervous to ask, and those who are conscious of the happiness and safety of their teammates. Being the first to start the conversation allows your team members to create a safe space for the bigger conversations about what it means to create a diverse workplace and world.

Why is this a great virtual DEI activity?

This activity is about as straightforward as it gets when it comes to DEI, and is popular for a reason. Bringing in a qualified DEI coordinator to host a conversation about DEI allows everyone to have a conversation and ask questions comfortably. 

How to get started 👉 Start with DEI Conversations at Work!

DEI Conversations at Work

2. Black Cultural Impact Class

Black culture has shaped America in ways you might not even be aware of. With Black culture’s impact on everything from rock and roll music to modern art, it’s always a good time to learn about how deeply Black culture influences American culture!

Why is this a great virtual DEI activity? 

This lecture-style activity takes participants through Black culture and its impact on America – from politics to music and beyond. This activity opens the doors for conversations and questions that make employees feel comfortable and empowered.

How to get started 👉 Enroll your team in our Black Cultural Impact Class!

Black Cultural Impact Class

3. LGBTQIA+ Drag Queen Trivia

Drag queens are always a great time, and when you add some LGBTQIA+ trivia into the mix? Your team is sure to have a party that teaches them something new about queer culture, and provides them with some great laughs along the way.

Why is this a great virtual DEI activity?

Hosted by a hilariously talented drag queen, this event celebrates diversity and promotes inclusion while opening up the conversation about understanding differences in sexual orientation. There is so much to be learned about queer history and culture, so why not learn in style?

How to get started 👉 Category is… LGBTQIA+ Drag Queen Trivia!

LGBTQIA+ Drag Queen Trivia

4. Tai Chi Class

Help your team find their zen in a virtual tai chi class. Learn the art of stress reduction through gentle breathing, exercises, and stretches as practiced in this Chinese ancient martial art.

Why is this a great virtual DEI activity?

Is your team sick of being stuck at their desk? If so, then this is the perfect diversity and inclusivity activity for them. Instead of sitting through another lecture, everyone will learn something new about an eastern movement practice, while getting up and on their feet! 

How to get started 👉 Go with the flow in a Tai Chi Class!

Tai Chi Class

5. Exploring Women in Art

Who runs the world? You already know the answer… and in the art world, some of the coolest, most interesting and iconic pieces of art were created by women. But the male-dominated art industry often allows women artists to fall to the wayside. Use this time with your team to discuss little-known facts and interesting backstories to some of the coolest works of art created by women.

Why is this a great virtual DEI activity?

If your team is the creative type, then this activity is a great option to get them talking! Not only does it cover some of the most iconic women artists of all time, but your team will have the chance to learn about some lesser known artists (and perhaps find a new fave).

How to get started 👉 Discover your new favorite artist in Exploring Women in Art!

Exploring Women in Art

10 more activities to promote an inclusive culture at work

Much like in real life, team members from diverse backgrounds face challenges in the workplace that others do not. For example, without diverse leadership, women are 20% less likely to gain support for their ideas than their male counterparts. People of color, people in the LGBTQIA+ community, and others can often feel excluded and (in worst-case scenarios) discriminated against in the workplace. 

As a leader in your place of work, it’s your responsibility to take care of your employees and help them feel included and cared for in the workplace. A great way to do this is by hosting regular diversity and inclusion activities in the workplace, and making conversations about DEI a staple in your place of work.

Here are a few options for activities to integrate into your company culture to promote inclusivity at work:

6. Start a movie club

Movies are an element of culture that brings us all together. After all, how often do you find yourself chatting over the watercooler (or the virtual watercooler) about the latest Marvel release, or asking someone about their favorite movie? 

Experiencing and talking about different cultures through the lens of cinema is a great gateway to opening up the larger conversation about diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Introducing a monthly movie club to your office is a fun way to bring everyone together for a relaxing time, and to experience different cultures through film. Consider taking a History of Black Cinema Class, or having a month dedicated to watching (office appropriate) Queer films. Then, bring your team together to discuss their thoughts about the film. Bonus points if you provide popcorn and candy!

7. Play educational games about DEI

Playing educational games about DEI is one of the best ways to get your entire team engaged, involved, and learning about different cultures and histories. Because games are slightly competitive and tons of fun by nature, your staff will be learning and engaging with diverse ideas without snoring through them!

Here are some games we love that focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion: 🕹️

These kinds of trivia-based games and activities allow your teams to flex their cultural knowledge and learn from their peers in a fun and inclusive setting.

8. Take cooking classes together

Regardless of upbringing, language barriers, class, or skin color, food brings us all together. There is something extraordinary about sharing your favorite traditional dish with people you care about. So, why not treat your team to a Paella Cooking Class?

Through Zoom, your team can learn to make a traditional cultural dish that might become a staple in their weekly meal rotation.

9. Explore art from around the world

Art is a great way to introduce your team members to different traditions, cultures, and styles. When it comes to diversity, there is so much to be learned through art and art history. 

During your next virtual team building event, pick a certain culture or time period and learn about the art and artistic styles. You and your team can learn about everything from Native American art to AAPI art — the possibilities are endless!

10. Encourage ERGs

Employee Resource Groups, or ERGs, are a great way for employees to control their own inclusion and create support groups in the workplace. An ERG can be focused on anything from personal development for people of color to a support group for your LGBTQIA+ staff members. The best part about ERGs is that they are employee-led and allow people to self-select, which fosters a sense of community and togetherness in the workplace.

As an employer, giving time and space for ERGs and encouraging ERGs to organize cultural events is a great way to show that you take diversity and inclusion seriously within your organization.

11. Team recipe swaps

Like we said, food is the great cultural connector. There is a lot to be learned about someone else’s heritage through cultural or familial recipes!

 In lieu of your standard potluck lunch, why not host a team recipe swap? Consider it like a “secret Santa,” but everyone involved gets sent a new recipe to try out. 

12. Invite guest speakers

Guest speakers can come in and talk to your team about various topics. This is a great way to open up the floor for questions about DEI, history, culture, and how everyone can work to create a safer and more inclusive workplace. Some popular speaking topics that you might want to include in your lineup are:

  • Black history and culture ✊🏿
  • How to advocate for yourself and others in the workplace 📣
  • The importance of finding a healthy work/life balance ⚖️
  • Being a great workplace ally 🤝

13. Take a DEI workshop together

A DEI workshop is one of the best ways to increase your team’s awareness of diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Facilitated by a DEI expert, these workshops can be a great resource for team members to learn to advocate for themselves and others. 

14. Celebrate cultural holidays

In the workplace, even though some holidays aren’t federally recognized, there is still room for celebrating different cultural holidays. This year, try hosting activities and celebrations for Lunar New Year, Juneteenth, Kwanzaa, and Hanukkah!

15. Share family photos

Your team members are likely proud of their history and culture, and would love the opportunity to speak about their loved ones and their ancestors. 

Host a team event where staff members can bring in family photos and give a small presentation about their family history and background. You never know who might have something cultural in common or what you might learn about your work bestie.

16. Lunch and learns

Lunch and learns are a great DEI activity for the workplace, especially for remote employees. In a virtual work setting, it can be difficult to get the whole team together. But providing them with lunch and inviting a guest speaker to present on a DEI topic is a great way to bring people together without asking them to participate outside of working hours.

Plan your next virtual DEI event with Confetti!

At Confetti, learning about DEI is an everyday activity we would love to share with you and your team. Whether you want to learn about art history or have a fun, expert-hosted trivia night, we’ve got all the activities you need to host a virtual diversity and inclusivity activity that the whole team will love.

For more ideas on how to create a more inclusive workplace, see our ultimate diversity and inclusion guide.

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faq

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens when a company doesn’t prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives? 

Companies that don’t prioritize DEI initiatives can see lower levels of employee engagement, higher employee turnover, and toxic leadership, which all harm the bottom line.

Studies by Harvard Business Review show that a strong sense of belonging among employees leads to a 50% lower risk of employee turnover and a 56% increase in job performance and productivity.

How do you pick the right diversity and inclusion activity? 

Picking the right activity will depend on your team’s company culture, as well as your unique employee interests. Some teams are more interested in connecting through informative lectures and conversations, while others prefer a more hands-on experience like a craft or cooking class.

What are some free diversity and inclusion activities? 

There are many ways you can implement diversity and inclusion activities in the workplace without tapping into your team building budget. Forming Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), sharing recipes and family photos, and hosting books and movie clubs are some examples to get you started. 

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