Do Senior Pastors Value Guest Services?

I recently sat down with a church staff member that serves in another state, and he mentioned how Guest Services at his church needed to improve. He was frustrated, especially since this area of responsibility fell on his shoulders. We chatted about a number of elements that could be contributing his current frustration. One key element we discovered in our conversation was the lack of value his Senior Pastor had for Guest Services.  

What are the areas of focus for most Senior Pastors?

  • Sermon
  • Staffing
  • Music
  • Children and Students
  • Small/Community Groups 
  • Missions/Outreach
  • Volunteers

Question: What if the guest is frustrated and distracted because of their poor experience with a team member in the parking lot or with a greeter before they check their child or student in or before the music and sermon begin? The message already heard and felt before anything else is louder and more effective than what everything else will be said. The opposite can be true as well. What if the guest feels comfortable and in control of the emotional and social distance, how much more in tune would they be when the music and sermon begin? 

There are a lot of elements that influence the guest experience long before they ever hear the music or sermon. Those introductory elements weigh more than what most Senior Pastors value, but if given deep care could be the tipping point towards a remarkable experience.

After working in churches for many years and speaking with churches about this frustration, I have discovered that Senior Pastors fall into one of four categories when it comes to valuing Guest Services.

1. They don't know they should value Guest Services.

Defined: They are innocently unaware of the importance of this area.

2. They don't value Guest Services at all.

Defined: They intentionally disregard this area as a value add to the guest.

3. They have Guest Services as an aspirational value

Defined: They think by giving a few resources that it shows care about this area.

4. They truly value Guest Services. 

Defined: They sacrifice in other areas in order to provide resources for this area.