Ice Breaker Questions: Work-Appropriate Whimsy



Woman in the workplace. We all break the ice in our own way. She uses an ax.

My little cohort at work does something in it’s weekly check-in. We end each meeting reviewing everyone’s answers to the question of that particular week. The questions vary from simple (“what do you like about Spring?”), to pointed (“Do you love or hate the dentist? Here’s why I love the dentist…”), to far-fetched (“Where do you go in your time machine that you won in a contest, the natural way to acquire time machines?”), but it’s a brief moment of levity each week to catch a glimpse of people’s lives. And it is shockingly contentious.

You may be more familiar with QotW’s more well-known cousin, the ice breaker, a question you use to open up a meeting or conversation to get people talking. To break the ice.

We used to call them ice breaker questions too, until people complained about how much time we were spending on them, or flat out, not liking them very much, and we moved them to the end of the meeting. People could leave if they didn’t want to participate, or if we had other topics to get through and we ran out of time, we would be comfortable walking away without discovering our coworkers’ outlook on baby animals, and which one was their favorite.

Correct answer: Elephants.

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