Most churches focus on making new guests feel welcome. And we should. Stats show that people decide in the first 8 minutes if they are going to return. How your team makes people feel when they arrive is very important.
But one miss many churches make is also having an exit strategy after the service or event. How you make people feel when they are leaving is important as well.
Remember, a guest’s experience is the culmination of all of their interactions with your church. While no one owns the guest, they do own the minute or so they are with the guest.
You can have a great welcome team, but without a great goodbye team, you will not be as effective.
You can use the welcome team as the goodbye team as well or build a separate goodbye team. Here are some tips.
Make sure you have friendly people who have a smile on their face. Don’t put someone who was baptized in pickle juice as one of your goodbye team members. You want someone with an upbeat attitude.
Greet each person as they are leaving.
Say things like…
Thanks for coming!
Have a blessed week.
See you soon!
Goodbye, it was great having you with us.
We can’t wait to see you again!
Use signs that say these things in writing. Have people stand at the parking lot exits, holding these signs and waving at people as they leave.
As I mentioned earlier, we must remember that guests will take all of their interactions with the people in your church and add them up to determine how their experience was. Everything and every person must walk the talk.
The last thing guests will remember is how they were treated when they were leaving.
If you can have a great welcome AND a great goodbye team, you will see many families return and become a part of your church.
This article originally appeared here.