This is the second of five chapters in a 25 part blog series titled: The Five Elements of a Fully Implemented Connections Strategy, published over a five week period. Everything I have posted here is the result of my own personal experiences, from serving on church staffs, volunteering as a lay leader, and being brought in as a paid consultant. It is my hope that these posts will help you and your church get better at connecting with guests, not simply to increase your attendance and membership, but ultimately to grow the body of Christ. Implementing a Connections strategy (or “Assimilation” strategy) is a long term process, and one that relies on a culture of continual improvement. This chapter has five entries, which will all be linked below the post as they are published.
Guest Services. Your Guest Services strategy consists of your Parking Team outside the building, you Greeter Team at all the entrances, and your Guest Services central location which we will discuss in the next section. Most churches already have some or all of these pieces in place. What is often lacking is an established strategy and volunteer orientation process. I want to help you improve this area; it is important enough to do so.
2.1 Your Greeters
Every church has greeters at the entrances, but when was the last time you evaluated the strategy of this team? Consider the guest experience: Once a guest leaves the parking lot and is greeted at the doorway, what will they see? A team of well trained greeters should be focused on the entrances and attentive to every person who walks through the door. This is a big part of your first impression with guests so recruit well!
What people see from your greeter team will be what they expect from your entire church. As a result, your Greeters (and all of guest services) give your church a wonderful opportunity to connect face to face with everyone who walks through your door, every week. Here is a good sample checklist to evaluate your current Greeter team:
- Strong greeter teams are multigenerational; be sure to recruit young, friendly adults.
- The greeter role does not require a theological degree or advanced computer skills, just a friendly face and a pleasant demeanor.
- You already know this, but: eye contact, smiles, “good morning” and handshakes/high fives/fist-bumps make for a fun entrance. Doesn’t need to be over the top, just communicating how glad you are to see everyone.
- Maintain a greeter presence at your main entrance starting 15 minutes before your first service until halfway through the last one.
- Structure your plan to have greeters at every entrance, but especially at your main entrance. That’s where your guest services central location will be.
Next: 2.2 Guest Services: Central Location
Main Series Page: The Five Elements of a Fully Implemented Connections Strategy
Element Two: Guest Services