Connection Concierge

concierge_manual_680x367How do you help people make meaningful connections when they attend your church? One of the most frustrating things in finding a church has been figuring how to connect with other attenders.My wife had a great idea the other day and I wanted to pass it on before it slips into the abyss forgetfulness that is my brain. What if you had a Connection Concierge?

Most people are familiar with the Concierge at an upscale hotel. Their job is to help hotel guests buy tickets, make dinner reservations or suggest day trip destinations; basically to ensure the guest has a positive experience while they are in town. Here is a typical conversation with a Concierge:

“Can you help us find a nice place to eat tonight?”

“Absolutely. What kind of food are you in the mood for?”

“Italian sounds good”

“Excellent, here are three nice Italian restaurants in the area. I highly recommend Guido’s, their lasagna is amazing. Would you  like me to make a reservation?”

“That would be great, thanks!”

“My pleasure”

Wouldn’t it be cool to have a Concierge available at your church? A conversation might go like this:

“We’re new to the church and we’re wondering how we could connect?”

“I’d love to help you with that! Can you tell me a little about your family?”

“We are empty nesters and we just moved to town. We’d love to meet other people around our age”

“Excellent. Let me suggest two or three ways we can help. First, we have a Newcomers Gathering next weekend, here’s a flyer about that. We also several couples groups that meet in homes. Let me show you a list on our website. I highly recommend the Smith’s group which meets on Friday nights in the Oaks Subdivision, they are a lot of fun and love welcoming new attenders. Could I assist with an introduction?”

“We probably need to think about it?”

“Absolutely. Please stop back by any weekend and we’d be glad to help you make a connection. Thanks for stopping by!”

Ideally there are be several trained volunteers who man a Concierge desk each weekend as well as be available at the end of events like Newcomers, Membership Class, Meet the Pastor to help people take next steps. The goal is to provide easy onramps for people with a desire to serve and/or connect at the church beyond sign up sheets or simply answering questions at a Welcome Center.

I think there is huge potential, I just wish I had thought of it.

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3 Responses to “Connection Concierge”

  1. Dave Patchin March 14, 2013 at 11:59 am #

    Great idea. High touch, far more personable than a groups listing on a website or a “standardized” list of ways to get involved. It let’s the person seeking help point to where they want connection and allows the “concierge” to skillfully point to areas they may not have considered (like serving on a team, or a biking group).

  2. Lynn Richardson March 15, 2013 at 7:51 am #

    I agree a great concept although knowing human behavior dependable bodies are few. I think we have fallen into the lie of church not being a business. Myself I work for God and He is my CEO. So in a business view, seeing the foyer of the building, allowing traffic flow, lined with literature with every explanatory avenue. As a Greeter, I see so many come in who have just been beat down by the world, leaving them very intimidated and in need of a safe place-a place to make independent choices. Of course having a place to have questions answered. I see the role of members working on giving those who come through our doors uplifting dignity, respect and just simple love.

  3. Claire Adare March 15, 2013 at 10:25 am #

    Fantastic idea! My family has moved 18 times and our first goal has always been to find a church home. I can’t tell you how many times we’ve walked out of a church and I’ve said, “Someone pinch me because right now I think we’re invisible!” Nobody would talk to us! We were a fairly normal looking family – and dressed okay – I just could never understand it. We would always go to a church three times before moving on. I know I need to “step-up” at the church I attend now to be more intentional in greeting people and helping with our hospitality. Thank you for posting this.