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Better Meetings

The ultimate list of 100+ icebreaker questions for virtual meetings

Illustration of penguins on ice

Let’s be real: no matter how accustomed you are to meetings, there’s usually some anxiety or awkwardness when you first log into a video call. And there’s nothing worse than a meeting that begins with pure silence — what a mood-killer! 🙄

Whether it’s a regular team meeting or a kickoff call with a new client or co-worker, it’s important to create a relaxed atmosphere. And what better way to do that than with a great icebreaker question that gets people talking about themselves?

Icebreaker questions are prompts you can include in a team meeting or activity to make introductions easier and less stressful. The goal of icebreaker questions is to have a bit of fun, build opportunities for connection, and increase the confidence of the participants to speak in front of the group.

As an example, at the beginning of a project kick-off meeting when you’re introducing teams from different departments to each other, you could prompt them to share their name, role, and favorite TV show. 

If you need some icebreaker ideas, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s a  list of 100+ icebreaker questions, ranging from work habits to pets to food. 

Nothing left now but to break the ice and get started! 

Table of contents

  • Why icebreakers are great for remote teams and virtual meetings

  • Icebreaker questions about work

  • Preference-based icebreaker questions

  • Fun icebreaker questions

  • Would you rather icebreaker questions

  • Have you ever icebreaker questions

  • Thought-provoking icebreaker questions

  • Food-related icebreaker questions

Why icebreakers are great for remote teams and virtual meetings

Virtual meetings are second nature to everyone by now, but if we’re being honest, it’s easy to slip into autopilot as you jump from one video call to the next. There’s even a name for that – Zoom fatigue – and those engaged in remote work are especially vulnerable to it.

A well-placed virtual icebreaker question is just the ticket to fight off this fatigue and get people to be more present and engaged. It also encourages participation and creates the implication that your check-in meeting or virtual team-building session is a space where everyone’s contributions are valued.

If you’re a facilitator deciding which icebreaker to use, make sure to think about inclusivity. The point of icebreakers is to make everyone feel included, so avoid questions that might make someone uncomfortable (and make it okay to say “I don’t know!” to a question). 

In other words, tailor your icebreakers to your meeting attendees. In a meeting with a lot of international participants, you wouldn’t ask people about their favorite Thanksgiving traditions, since that is a holiday that’s only celebrated in certain countries.

Icebreaker questions about work

If you want to play it safe, ask a work-related question. You’re all at work anyway, so people will be in that headspace. 

Here are some recommendations for work-related icebreaker questions:

  1. How would you describe what you do for a living to a five-year-old?

  2. What do your loved ones think you do?

  3. What was your first job?

  4. What's your earliest memory of your current job?

  5. What's your favorite food for a workday lunch?

  6. What did you want to be when you were growing up?

  7. What do you like more: working from home, working from the office, or working from another spot (e.g. coffee shop or co-working space)?

  8. What's the most unusual job you’ve ever heard of?

  9. Would it be better to start your career five years later or retire five years earlier?

  10. What's your favorite weekly meeting?

  11. If you had to describe your feelings at this moment as a type of weather, what’s the forecast?

  12. What underrated skill do you think everyone should have?

  13. What’s a good book or an interesting article you’ve read recently?

  14. What color best describes your mood today?

  15. What are you excited about this week?

  16. What are you most excited to do when you wake up in the morning?

  17. What are you procrastinating over right now (in work or life)?

  18. What’s the last thing you’ve done at work that you’re proud of?

  19. What’s one productivity tip you like to actually use at work?

  20. What productivity tool could you not do without, and why?

  21. What simple life hack can you share with everyone?

  22. What brand/company do you admire and why?

  23. What skill do you want to improve?

  24. What’s your favorite song or soundtrack when doing deep-focus work?

Preference-based icebreaker questions

If you want to learn more about what people like, these are the right icebreaker questions for you.

  1. Are you a dog person or a cat person? 

  2. Pull out your phone – what's your most used emoji?

  3. Imagine you’re a professional baseball player. What's your walk-up song?

  4. What's the best breed of dog?

  5. What's your favorite animal?

  6. If your car had vanity plates, what would they say?

  7. What movie do you wish you could watch again for the first time?

  8. You can only eat one food again for the rest of your life. What is it?

  9. What's your go-to karaoke anthem?

  10. What’s your favorite music decade and why?

  11. What have you bought this year that you absolutely love?

  12. If you were going  to Mars and you could take only one item with you, what would it be?

  13. What's the best superpower?

  14. Which fictional character would you want by your side during a zombie apocalypse?

  15. If you were an animal, what would you be?

  16. What bucket-list item do you want to check off in the next two years?

  17.  A genie offers to make you instantly fluent in a foreign language – which would you choose?

  18. If you could become a supernatural creature of the night – which one would you be and why?

  19. If your home was packed to the brim with golf balls, how would you remove them?

  20. Show us something you have on your desk right now. 

  21. What emoji best describes how you’re feeling right now?

  22. Jeans or sweatpants?

  23. What's your favorite podcast?

Fun icebreaker questions

These funny icebreaker questions are great to warm up your team members. Who doesn’t like thinking about things that are a little out of left field?

  1. What was the most embarrassing fashion trend you embraced in high school?

  2. What was your worst haircut?

  3. What fashion trend would you like to bring back and why?

  4. Which popular food item do you dislike?

  5. Which actor would you want to play you in a movie about your life?

  6. Would you rather have a sloth or a parrot as a pet?

  7. Which Home Alone trap was the best?

  8. Which comedy movie makes you laugh the hardest?

  9. What's the best romantic comedy?

  10. If you could invent a holiday, what would it be and what would you call it?

  11. Share a weird random fact.

Would you rather icebreaker questions

Would you rather is the most famous icebreaker game for a reason. It’s both fun and thought-provoking. But try to keep it silly and low-pressure — the last thing you want to do is make someone feel nervous or embarrassed.

Here are some of our favorite would-you-rather scenarios: 

  1. Would you rather live at the bottom of the ocean or on the Moon?

  2. Would you rather live in the North Pole or the South Pole?

  3. Would you rather travel back in time to meet your ancestors or to the future to meet your descendants?

  4. Would you rather talk like Yoda or breathe like Darth Vader?

  5. Would you rather lose all of your money or all of your pictures?

  6. Which superpower do you prefer – invisibility or flight?

  7. Would you rather live in Antarctica or a tropical place where it’s always 100 degrees?

  8. Would you rather always be slightly late or super early?

  9. Would you rather give up your smartphone or your computer?

  10. Would you rather live without heat or without AC?

  11. Would you rather be the funniest person in the room or the smartest?

  12. Would you rather be a sports star or a rock star?

  13. Would you rather have a rewind button or a pause button for your life?

  14. Would you rather be able to talk with animals or speak all foreign languages?

  15. Would you rather be without the internet for a week or without hot water?

  16. Would you rather work more hours each day but have a four-day workweek or work fewer hours per day and work Saturdays?

  17. Would you rather listen exclusively to ‘80s music or music from today?

  18. Would you rather be Batman or Spiderman?

  19. Would you rather be stuck on a broken ski lift or in a broken elevator?

  20. Would you rather go to a movie alone or dinner alone?

  21. Would you rather make a phone call or send a text?

  22. Would you rather read an awesome book or watch a good movie?

  23. Would you rather spend the night in a luxury hotel or camping amid beautiful scenery?

  24. Would you rather explore space or the ocean?

  25. Would you rather go deep-sea diving or bungee jumping?

  26. Would you rather be a kid your whole life or an adult your whole life?

  27. Would you rather lose your keys or your cell phone?

  28. Would you rather eat a cow tongue or an octopus?

  29. Would you rather be stuck on an island alone or with someone who talks incessantly?

Have you ever icebreaker questions

If you want to kick off a meeting with icebreakers that help you get to know others, these are great. Talking about past experiences can tell you a lot about someone. This is why these questions are useful for a getting-to-know-you one-on-one meeting.

  1. Have you ever met your idol or someone you revere?

  2. Have you ever completed anything on your bucket list?

  3. Have you ever run a marathon?

  4. Have you ever played in a band?

  5. Have you ever met a celebrity?

  6. Have you ever built a website or bought a domain name?

Thought-provoking icebreaker questions

It’s time to go just *a little bit* deeper with these icebreaker questions.

  1. Share something you’ve recently learned about yourself.

  2. What’s a new habit or practice you’re trying to improve?

  3. What’s something that you forget often?

  4. Which question would you ask to find out the most about a person you just met?

  5. What small detail or practice has vastly improved your quality of life?

  6. What’s your favorite word or saying and why?

  7. What’s something you find soothing?

  8. What do you love that many people hate?

  9. If you could rid the world of one thing, what would it be?

  10. What's your favorite habit?

  11. What do you enjoy most about your hobby or favorite pastime?

  12. If you could go back in time, what would you learn as a child so that you could be an expert in it as an adult?

  13. What book, movie, album, or poem means a lot to you?

  14. What are you doing when you feel most alive?

  15. What’s the quality you cherish most about one of your closest friends?

  16. What’s something that’s considered socially acceptable now but won’t be in 100 years?

  17. Name one person who changed your life but doesn’t know it.

  18. If you were handed a megaphone and could blast out one message for the entire world to hear, what would you say?

Food-related icebreaker questions

If you want to play it safe but don’t want to ask one of the work-related questions on this list, here’s your best bet. Everyone likes food and talking about it.

  1. What's your favorite restaurant?

  2. How do you like your potatoes?

  3. If you could only eat one kind of food for the rest of your life, what would you eat?

  4. What's your favorite candy or treat?

  5. Sweet, salty, or sour?

  6. What takeout food are you craving today and why?

  7. What’s the weirdest food you’ve ever eaten?

  8. What's something you’re great at cooking?

  9. Is there a dish you just can’t cook properly, no matter how hard you try?

  10. What's your favorite dessert?

  11. What’s the most interesting thing in your fridge right now?

  12. What’s your favorite sandwich?

  13. If you could eliminate one food so no one could eat it ever again, which one would it be?

  14. What's your favorite breakfast food?

  15. What's the best dish you've ever eaten?

  16. Name a healthy food you enjoy and a junk food that’s your guilty pleasure.

  17. What food trends do you find annoying?

  18. What food do you like even though many people find it a little odd?

  19. What's your top comfort food?

  20. Food truck or restaurant?

  21. What strange food pairings do you love?

  22. What food will you never eat?

  23. What food do you associate with being a kid/the place where you grew up?

  24. Would you rather lose sleep or skip a meal?

  25. What’s the first thing you drink when you wake up?

  26. Breakfast for dinner, yay or nay?

Go beyond good icebreakers to enhance your meetings

Icebreaker questions are a good way to warm up meeting participants, and get them in the mood to open up and share with the rest of the group. Just make sure to keep the prompts relatively lighthearted and take inclusivity seriously. Icebreakers that make someone feel uncomfortable or unwelcome defeat the whole point of the exercise.

And if you don’t want to bring icebreakers to your meetings, consider creating an #icebreakers Slack channel that’s voluntary to participate in and gives people a place to share more personal information. 

It should also be said that good video meetings need more than icebreakers — look for ways to encourage more participation throughout the meeting. With Vowel, you can:

  • Use emoji reactions to react without going off mute (including custom emojis — hello, dancing banana!)

  • Track talk-time percentages to make sure no one’s dominating the conversation

  • Use the “raise hand” button to answer questions or get your questions and thoughts heard. 

Here's to more engaging, fun, and productive meetings!