The 4th Discipline of Guest Experiences: Measurement

Organizations that want to produce a high-quality Guest experience need to perform a set of sound, standard practices. Harley Manning and Kerry Bodine, in their book Outside In, have developed six high-level disciplines which can be translated into Guest experiences: strategy, Guest understanding, design, measurement, governance, and culture.

An overview of all six Disciplines can be found here. These disciplines represent the areas where organizations that are consistently great at Guest experiences excel.

If you want to deliver a great Guest Experience, these disciplines are where you need to focus, too. 


As the saying goes, “What gets measured matters.” Measurement practices take the guesswork out of managing your Guest Experience. It does this by capturing what actually happens in a Guest Experience, how the Guest felt during the interaction, and whether the Guest is willing to recommend your organization to others afterward. Measurements tell your team what’s going right (or wrong), what, if anything to do about it, and what impact your organization can expect as a result.

Measurement Practices

  • Define a Guest Experience quality framework that aligns with how Guests judge and experience and is consistent across the organization
  • Define the subsets of Guest Experience metrics that show how each group, role, and individual contributes to Guest Experience quality
  • Measure how Guests perceive their experiences with the organization based on the criteria in the Guest Experience quality framework
  • Collect descriptive metrics about each experience that provide context for Guest perceptions
  • Analyze Guest Experience metrics to determine differences in experience quality among key Guest segments, tasks,  or aspects of the experience
  • Model the relationship between drivers of Guest Experience quality, Guest perceptions of their experiences, and desired outcomes
  • Share Guest Experience metrics and models with all team members

The foundation of your measurements is creating a Guest Experience Framework. This framework strings together cause, effect, and outcomes into a coherent story for your organization. It’s a tool that helps you decide what to measure, how to measure it, and what your findings mean to your organization.

Your framework is structured around two tiers. The first tier will give you the big picture, a broad view of your overall Guest Experience. The second tier will capture perceptions of discrete, end-to-end Guest journeys – giving you details about the Guest’s specific experiences with individual touch points they encounter along the way.

Picking the Guest Experiences that you want to measure is half the battle. The second half of the battle is deciding how to measure those experiences. There are three types of metrics to use:

  1. Perception metrics measure Guest perceptions that exist only in the minds of your Guests
  2. Descriptive metrics consist of operational data about your Guests’ interactions
  3. Outcome metrics tell you what Guests intend to do – or actually did – after interacting with your organization

All effective measurement programs model the relationships between Guest Experience quality, the factors that drive it, and results.

The measurement discipline isn’t as glamorous as strategy or design, but it’s like rocket fuel for all your Guest Experience initiatives.

  • It drives interest in your programs by demonstrating results
  • It keeps people on track by connecting them to hard data about their effectiveness
  • It provides a reality check for the other Guest Experience disciplines

By identifying the things that matter most from the perspective of your Guests – and then identifying them systematically over time – you’ll know whether your strategy is on track, whether your Guest understanding is accurate, and how well the experience you designed is resonating with Guests.

Application to ChurchWorld

  • Measurement keeps Guest Experiences on track
  • Connect the dots across your measurement framework
  • Let measurement power your Guest Experience efforts

Want to know more? I will be happy to discuss Guest Experience initiatives for your church and partner with you to design a WOW! Guest Experience.

Next: How can your organization act on the insights you gained through measurement? The answer to that question is governance.


Want to know more about the Guest Experience in your church?

  • Learn why the Guest Experience matters here
  • Contact me here
  • Read up a little here