Being personable goes a long way in any environment, and a workplace is no different. Being interested in the people around you and asking the right questions will strengthen your relationships.
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But thinking of the right things to say to your coworkers can be difficult since we don’t necessarily know them that well. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best icebreaker questions to ask your coworkers – some related to work, and some not so much.
Icebreaker questions for work meetings
- Do you prefer takeout or delivery?
- What’s your go-to breakfast food?
- Favorite book genre?
- As a kid, who did you want to be when you grow up?
- Cats or dogs?
- Cakes or pies?
- Coffee or tea?
- Hot or cold beverages?
- Cinema or concert?
- What’s one skill you’d love to learn instantly?
Icebreaker questions for team building
- Who or what is your inspiration?
- What motivates you?
- Has a quote or a saying ever changed your life?
- What’s your favorite memory?
- What kind of music gets you into the mood for working?
- Do you prefer to focus on theory or practice when learning something?
- Ever wear mismatched socks?
- Shower or a bath?
- Do you ever give names to inanimate objects?
Icebreaker questions for the lunchroom
- Does it take you a long time to get ready for work?
- Which projects are the most exciting to you?
- What do you like the most about this company?
- Do you drink coffee in the morning?
- What’s your worst job experience?
- What was your first job?
- Do you find motivational speakers useful?
- How often do you get a new phone?
- Do you enjoy getting the new phone upgrade, or is it more of a necessity for you?
- Have you ever felt addicted to junk food?
- Do you often have a hard time getting out of bed?
- How do you make yourself get out of bed when you really don’t want to?
- What’s the most spontaneous thing you’ve ever done?
- Did your interests change much in the last 5 years?
- How would your morning routine look if you had a few more hours before work?
- What was the most difficult work-related problem you ever had to solve?
- What’s the most important thing you’ve learned since joining this company?
Icebreaker questions for a coffee break
- How was traffic today?
- Do you ever get bored at work?
- What do you do when you just can’t relax?
- Do you take any food supplements?
- Have you ever had a job without a contract?
- Do you ever feel guilty about spending money?
- What’s your go-to supermarket aisle?
- Do you care what kind of keyboard you’re using for typing?
- How do you spend your time off work?
- Do you ever buy useless stuff?
- Do you ever wish you were born in another country?
- How much coffee do you usually drink per day?
- What’s your favorite restaurant in town?
- What’s the most exciting holiday for you?
- Do you think it’s important to have a chill-out space in the office?
Icebreaker questions to get to know a coworker
- Is there any philosophical school of thought that resonates with you?
- Would you rather buy cheaper things more often, or shell out and get something that lasts?
- What kind of advice would you give yourself ten years ago?
- Have you ever read a self-help book that actually helped?
- Were you excited to start working when you were finishing school?
- What would you consider a productive day?
- If you’re walking somewhere and see a log or a big branch on the road, are you likely to go out of your way to move it to the side so that the cars could pass unobstructed? Would you be more likely to do it if there was no one around to see you do it, or less likely?
- What was your biggest surprise in life, your biggest “oh my god, I didn’t know!” moment?
- Did you ever have to leave your pet behind while moving to a new place?
- Do you work out? What’s your workout music?
- What’s the longest you could go without talking to anyone?
- What can you not tolerate?
- Ever went to a music festival? What do you like about being there?
- What are you nostalgic for?
- Do you feel more comfortable in silence or noise?
- Is there anything that makes you smile that most other people don’t understand?
- What’s your mentality when it comes to working?
Funny icebreaker questions for work
- Which celebrity would you want to switch lives and bodies with, for a week?
- If aliens contacted you out of boredom and wanted to chat, what would you talk about?
- What’s the worst you ever pranked someone?
- If you had to waste a lot of money really fast – but you couldn’t buy property, motor vehicles or stocks – what would you do with it?
- Do you have a friend of a friend who has a friend who’s famous?
- How do you react to the sounds of lawnmowers?
- Did you have any weird habits as a kid?
- Ever secretly wish to get hit by lightning and survive to tell the tale?..
- Do you ever come up with weird brand names and then google them to find out if they actually exist?
- Do you know anyone who ever had more money than they knew what to spend on?
- What’s the funniest song you’ve ever heard?
- Which color do you hate the most?
- What’s the most annoying form of marketing?
- What’s the weirdest trip you ever went on?
- Did you get into much trouble in school?
Icebreaker questions for a work mingle or party
- What’s the most interesting part of this job for you?
- How does a perfect day at work look like to you?
- What’s the most genius idea you ever had?
- Do you feel like you have a choice not to attend these parties?
- Are you into the meme culture? What kind of memes do you like?
- What’s the best thing that happened this year so far?
- What kind of stuff makes work more difficult than necessary?
- Do you ever find it hard to admit a mistake you’ve made, even if you know you were wrong? Why do you think that is?
- What’s your favorite beverage?
- What’s the best way to get into a festive mood?
- Do you have any pets?
- What type of people do you look up to?
- Have you read any books that changed how you view your job or life in any way?
Icebreaker questions for networking
- Are you working on any personal projects on your time off work?
- Do you have any tips for wasting less time?
- How do you verify the info you’ve read on the internet?
- How did you get into this field of work?
- Would you say you’re a risk-taker?
- What’s your preferred way of communicating at work?
- What kind of skills are you working on improving lately?
- What kind of sources do you prefer for learning new information?
- Did you ever have a mentor?
- Is it easy for you to make decisions?
- Is it easy for you to make new habits?
- Do you enjoy challenging your brain with new things?
- Do you have any talents you’re not using?
- Do you try to push yourself? What fields of life do you do that in?
- Would you say you’re competitive?
Free training: Conversation skills for overthinkers
- Use "conversational threading" to avoid awkward silence
- Learn a proven technique to get past empty small talk
- Improve socially without doing weird out-of-your-comfort-zone stunts.
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- See how you can go "from boring to bonding" in less than 7 words.