San Francisco is home to some of the biggest and best companies in the world, and many of those businesses invest heavily in team building. These top employers understand that great teams create great work.
Team building is a great way to improve employee job satisfaction, morale, communication, productivity, team bonding and more.
We love team building and believe that it can be one of the most effective ways to create an incredible workplace, so we’ve compiled an up-to-date list of the best team building activities, fun corporate events, and company outing ideas in San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, Marin, San Jose, and Mountain View.
1. Museum Hack
Museum Hack leads unconventional team building tours of the best museums in San Francisco. We know the thought of team building in a museum may raise an eyebrow or two, but hear us out. Museum Hack’s incredible tour guides are performers, entertainers, comedians, musicians, and generally awesome and fun people who really know how to facilitate a great team outing. Museum Hack offers several different team building options and fun corporate events, including tours at the SFMoMA, the Asian Art Museum, and the de Young. Looking for custom company team building events? Museum Hack’s tours can be tailored to match your company’s industry, mission, and values (MH once led a yogurt-themed tour for Dannon). Want your next team outing to be competitive? Book Museum Hack’s fun, interactive, and competitive Escape the Museum experience and scavenger hunt. Museum Hack events run for about two hours and the company serves groups of all sizes, from small teams up to large groups of 300+ and everything in-between.
2. The Great Guac Off
The Great Guac Off is one of the best team building activities in San Francisco. All Guac Offs are packed full of fast-paced and quirky company team building activities. In a nutshell, the Great Guac Off is a fun guacamole making competition optimized for team bonding. In addition to smashing avocados, your event includes fun mini-games and challenges, like Trivia-cado for extra points. With each event, additional food and drinks are available (guac ingredients and dippers are always included). Adding on burrito catering and beer to upgrade this company event into a full meal is a popular and well loved option. The Great Guac Off is available both as a daytime and evening event, can be run anywhere in the city, including at your office or at one of the Guac Off rental locations around San Francisco, and can accommodate any size group.
3. Gingerbread Wars
Gingerbread Wars is a holiday themed team building activity in San Francisco based on none other than the classic gingerbread house making competition. This corporate event starts at 90 minutes and includes everything needed for a successful team building activity and competition: an awesome host, game materials, prizes, fun photos, and more. Host your gingerbread competition anywhere in the Bay Area, including at your office, conference space, or at one of the Gingerbread Wars locations around San Francisco. Add-ons like gift bags for your guests, extra snacks, cookie platters, professional photographers, and more are available. You can also do BYOB, which helps make it a fun but cost effective option for your next team outing.
4. Launchy Birds
Launchy Birds uses “construct and destruct” game mechanics and strategy to promote team bonding, communication, and collaboration. With friendly competition sprinkled in, Launchy Birds is a fun and unexpected team building event that tops our list of the most unique team building activities in San Francisco. Launchy Birds is a fun and wildly chaotic company event. First, each team will construct a castle made out of odd materials, and then your groups will compete to knock the other castles down using equally odd projectiles. Launchy Birds is fast-paced, competitive, great for achieving maximum team bonding. These team building activities are perfect for team building for large groups and small teams.
5. Storytelling Workshops
Storytelling has emerged has one of the most important skills of the century. Why? Because stories are a powerful way to communicate with and motivate people. The ability to craft a great story is a top skill that everyone in your company, from leadership teams to marketing and sales to HR and more, should have. These storytelling workshops are designed to be both fun and informative corporate team building activities. Your employees will enjoy developing this new skill together and your teams will be able to apply it back at work right away, make it an effective and worthwhile team building investment.
6. PanIQ Escape Room
Brace yourselves, “Prison Break” is back, but this time, the prison is located at 75 Hyde Street and you and your colleagues are the inmates. PanIQ is another escape room for team building in San Francisco. PanIQ features decorations, sound effects, and several escape games to choose from at PanIQ, all of which tailor to particular interests. Each room is full of challenging puzzles, mazes, and riddles your team will have to solve and overcome together.
EscapeSF is home to two San Francisco team building activities: Escape from Alcatraz and Escape from the Antique Room. EscapeSF is conveniently located in the heart of the financial district of San Francisco, making it an easy spot to get to for your next company outing. Escape rooms are traditionally better suited for team building for small groups, as you can only fit so many people in the room. EscapeSF offers the option to split your team up into smaller groups and play in different rooms at the same time, or for your group to stay together in the same room and try both back-to-back. Either way, escape rooms make for a great post team event discussion and debrief on what your employees learned and how your team handled the challenges in front of them.
8. Parties that Cook
Sharing a meal with someone is one of the best ways to get to know them. Parties that Cook takes that idea to the next level with cooking-oriented corporate team building activities. Parties that Cook is a mobile culinary events company operating and hosting fun corporate events and private cooking parties throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. Parties that Cook can host groups of 15 – 350 guests at a variety of venues, including the Parties that Cook Kitchen in San Francisco and many partner venues that can accommodate both small and large team building groups. Parties that Cook’s fun group activities for adults inspire teamwork, camaraderie, and collaboration.
9. Women in Leadership by Museum hack
Women in Leadership Tours by Museum Hack are a great team outing for leaders at all levels. These tours, accessible to all genders, include a grand adventure through one of San Francisco’s best museums, like the de Young or SFMoMA. Your expert guide will share stories of history’s greatest female leaders and artists, and discuss the influence they had or should have had. You’ll play interactive games, participate in meaningful discussions, take fun photos, and learn a lot about history’s amazing women! These tours are optimized to inspire and empower leaders of all levels, including your senior executives and young stars.
10. Sidewalk Food Tours
One of the best (and most delicious) ways to get to know a new city is through its local cuisine. Sidewalk Food Tours combines delicious food, info about the history, culture, and architecture of San Francisco’s neighborhoods, and team building to create a unique corporate event. Sidewalk Food Tours is one of our top fun activities for employees in SF. Private team building tour rates start at $79 per person (daytime) and $89 per person (nighttime). Rates include food tastings (enough for lunch or dinner) and gratuity for the tour guide. Upgrade your corporate experience to add alcoholic beverages to your tour.
11. Captain Kirk’s San Francisco Sailing
Going sailing with your coworkers on your next company outing in San Francisco is truly a special experience and one of the best team building activities in the Bay Area. Depending on your team’s needs, Captain Kirk’s can organize a tightly structured corporate event or provide a less structured team outing. Captain Kirk’s can accommodate six to 60 people all on one boat, or will split your larger team onto multiple boats for a racing regatta. Choose from the following options: Bay Wolf – Team Challenge (up to 24 people), Multiple-boat Regattas (up to 100 people), or Angel Island Barbeque. Captain Kirk’s offers a unique team bonding adventure to discover the Bay Area. Bonus: If you’re lucky, then you may see dolphins or seals during the cruise!
Reason is the home of hi-tech team building activities in the Bay Area. Reason offers both future tech escape rooms and experiential workshops for your next corporate event. Reason is ideal for adventurous teams ready to experience the world’s first future tech escape room and embark on an epic sci-fi adventure. The best thing about this escape room is the multi-sensory experience, which features cryptic puzzles, strange messages, and hands-on riddles. Your time in the escape room will bond your team by challenging them to adapt, improve, and overcome obstacles and challenges together.
13. Stray Boots
Stray Boots is one of the best San Francisco team building activities. Stray Boots a team building scavenger hunt designed to explore the great city of San Francisco. Fun activities for employees include the Strayboots Strategy Game, Food and Drink Hunt at Union Square, SFMOMA Scavenger Hunt, Embarcadero Scavenger Hunt, North Beach Scavenger Hunt (the most popular), Chinatown Scavenger Hunt, and more. Scavenger hunts as a team building option are a good way to get your team out of the office to compete in fun challenges, while solving new types of problems and having fun in the process. Each scavenger hunt takes two to three hours to complete on average.
14. Picnic at Golden Gate Park
One of the best company outing ideas on our list is a DIY team building activity in San Francisco. You don’t always have to use one of the team building companies on this list to plan your San Francisco corporate events. Instead, organize team outings like a DIY company picnic at Golden Gate Park or at one of the other amazing outdoor spaces around the city (Dolores Park, Alamo Park, Crissy Fields, The Presidio). Bring sandwiches, salads, snacks, fruits, desserts and drinks. Play games to get your team interacting and engaging (think mini scavenger hunt, Human Bingo, icebreaker questions, dodgeball, or trivia). A DIY picnic is a great option for teams with a smaller budget for team building.
15. Mr. Treasure Hunt
Mr. Treasure Hunt Urban Adventures offers detailed and organized corporate team building events in San Francisco. Mr. Treasure Hunt’s events are full of fun group activities for employees that require your team to solve challenging clues, explore new locations around the city, and create fun group photos. Some challenge questions require local knowledge, which may be fun for you and your team. These company team building activities are interactive and encourage team bonding. Mr. Treasure Hunt Urban Adventures runs events all over the Bay Area, including team building activities in Peninsula, South Bay, Marin, North Bay, Wine Country, and East Bay.
16. Jordan’s Kitchen
Jordan is a master chef you certainly want to meet! He will give you and your team a hands-on experience with preparing food like you’ve never seen before. You’ll learn new techniques and try new flavors, but most of all you’ll love the team bonding that takes place when your company is offsite for cooking classes. Enjoy a glass of wine as you cook, eat, and hang out together as a team.
17. Urban Diversion
Urban Diversion is social club with a team of instructors who offer adventurous and unforgettable fun group activities for adults and cool company outing ideas. Urban Diversion specializes in a variety of adventurous team building activities from hiking and fishing to skiing. Bond with your coworkers and break boundaries in communication with Urban Diversion. If your team has a sense of adventure, then this may be the corporate team building activity for you. You can also become a member of the Urban Diversion club and check out each of the different corporate events the club regularly hosts. From ping pong parties to ski runs on the best slopes in America, Urban Diversion’s team of enthusiasts has become a community for adrenaline junkies in San Francisco.
18. Hands On Gourmet
Hands On Gourmet hosts interactive cooking parties and company team building activities that allow people to get to know each other in a comfortable, familiar setting. Every event is instructive, interactive, and, most importantly, fun! Here’s how it works: First, grab a drink, snack on some local cheeses, and mingle. Second, you’ll be divided into individual cooking groups. Third, each group will work with a professional chef to create one portion of a delicious meal that you’ll all share at the end. Hands on Gourmet offers five seasonal menu choices and can accommodate all dietary needs.
ZogSports is the amateur sports team you’ve always wanted to join. ZogSports is basically an amateur volleyball game with a twist that keeps all members of your team excited and interested. Even if you don’t know how to play volleyball, you’ll still have a great time. ZogSports offers both corporate team building activities and an ongoing competitive league. In the league, you’ll get to play against other companies and ramp up the team bonding experience to another level.
20. Breakthrough Sushi
If you and you coworkers love sushi, then Breakthrough Sushi is a good place to set up your next team bonding event in San Francisco. Breakthrough Sushi will allow you to master your knowledge and skills, preparing sushi that will impress your family, friends, and relatives. From hand rolls to many other forms of sushi, you’ll learn the necessary techniques and recipes for making sushi rice. What makes this a cool team building activity is sharing this experience with your colleagues.
21. Feet First Eventertainment
Feet First Eventertainment offers a variety of team building activities in the Bay Area, Berkeley, Silicon Valley, San Jose, and Napa Valley for people looking to get moving during the next corporate event. Feet First’s focus is on pedaling, running and hiking, aka activities that are healthy and good for you. These events are also focused on building trust, overcoming obstacles, and improving communication skills, aka activities that are great for your team’s professional development. Ready to burn calories and get sweaty while competing with your coworkers? Feet First Eventertainment’s fun group activities for adults include Amazing Race at Fisherman’s Wharf (or Alcatraz!), Amazing Race through Chinatown, On-Site Room Escape, On-Site Indoor CSR Events, and more.
22. Foxhound Urban Adventures
For a few hours with Foxhound Urban Adventures, you and your team become world renowned spies (complete with al the high tech gadgets). During your team building event, you’ll explore some of the well-known SF urban landmarks, get your blood pumping and see how much you and your colleagues actually know about San Francisco. Recap the stories over dinner and/or drinks afterwards. This team building experience will help you bond with your crew in a special way, improving your communication and collaboration as a team.
23. Board Game Night
Who doesn’t love a good old fashion board game night?! Playing board games together is a great way to run DIY company team building activities in San Francisco. Set up shop either at your office or a local bar. Make sure to bring all the classic games like Monopoly and Risk that people are familiar with, plus newer games you can figure out how to play together, allowing your team to create memories and deepen bonds. Some board games allow for collaboration, which can be helpful for your event. Round out your DIY game night with music, snacks, drinks, and a quick round of icebreaker questions.
Are you ready to choose the best company team building activities in San Francisco for your business?
There are a lot of awesome company team building activities in San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, Marin, Mountain View and the whole of the Bay Area that you and your team can choose from when deciding where to host your next company outing. We hope this list narrowed down the options for you. From scavenger hunts to escape rooms to customized team building like Museum Hack to food-based corporate events like The Great Guac Off, we believe there’s a great team outing for all San Francisco companies on our list.
If you want additional help planning your next team building event, then don’t hesitate to drop us a line! We’d be honored to help.