In Fall 2020, I met Jed and Sophia Lazar and had a chance to try their online team-building game, “Cozy, Juicy, Real.” I was put on a team with 3 strangers and sent to a zoom breakout room. In addition to me, our team consisted of one woman from Mexico, a woman from Germany, and a man from Hungary. We had about 75 minutes to play the game. By the end of it, not only was I smiling and feeling like a connected human, but we were ready to invite each other to our homes once pandemic travel restrictions lifted. It really felt like the start of something meaningful with those lovely people.

After 12 months of virtual meetings and events, that gathering with Cozy, Juicy, Real really stands out in my mind as one of the most engaging and meaningful.

I followed up with Jed and Sophia afterward because I knew I wanted to bring their game to the teams that I work with. We’ve now partnered up and have worked with a few different teams.

The first team was a nonprofit collaborative that works on educational attainment. They are a working group that includes staff from a few different agencies that collaborate on a regular basis. They had been under a lot of stress during the pandemic and were feeling burnt out, and it was starting to affect their relationships with each other. 

Here’s some of their feedback after playing the game together:

It was an unusually great virtual gathering. 

I would like to bring this game to more teams because I think it is really hard to find ways to connect right now that are actually fun and meaningful. If you or anyone you know is interested in an experience like this, please let me know. 

Also, for anyone reading this that is connected with AmeriCorps, Jed Lazar is an AmeriCorps alum and we both love to support AmeriCorps programs, so there is a discounted rate available for the AmeriCorps sector.