Yesterday’s post introduced the concept of parking teams and how important they are to welcoming guests, members and attenders to your campus. Today I want to expand the parking concept beyond just cars.
I lead the Guest Services (Parking) Teams at Elevation Church’s Uptown location. As the “first face” of Elevation, my crew and I get weekly opportunities to practice guest services and make a lasting first impression. We don’t just park cars; we also:
- Sanitize all touch points and spray air freshener in the elevator cabs and stairwells of the parking deck we use
- Pick up trash along the route from the parking deck to the theater
- Put up 22 parking signs (3 different types) in a 2 block area around the theater
- Pull the parking ticket from the dispenser and personally hand it to guests entering the deck and welcome them to Elevation
- When possible, push the call button so the elevator is waiting for guests to take them from the parking deck levels to the ground floor
- Hold the door for guests entering and leaving the parking garage elevator lobby
- Validate parking for all Elevation guests
- Provide VIP (our first time guests) and family parking right next to the theater
- Know what’s going on Uptown so we can help any and everyone who has a question (sporting events, concerts, special activities, etc.)
- Provide umbrellas to guests when it’s raining for the walk from the parking deck to the theater
- Give a verbal greeting to everyone coming and going – in at least three different locations
- Be alert to any special needs and radio them ahead to the VIP tent
- As guests are leaving, we take the validated ticket from them and feed it into the dispenser, giving them a verbal blessing as they head out of the garage
And that’s just the parking team!
Elevation’s audacious Guest Services Team also has Greeters, a First Impressions Team, VIP Tent, and Connections Tent (but that’s another part of the journey).
All this BEFORE a guest has stepped into the theater for worship.
Your church is different from my campus – you probably don’t have a parking garage. But you do have parking lots – and that is an excellent opportunity for you to make a powerful first impression.
Take the principle – Parking is your first opportunity to make an impact on your guests – and apply it to the context of your place. What will you do this week to implement/change/improve your parking team?
Do not underestimate the power and influence of the first impression your parking lot makes!
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