March 5, 2013

Parking is More Than Just Cars

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.

For several years I served as a Guest Services Coordinator (Parking) 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 principleParking 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!

Day #14 of the 40 Day Guest Experience Journey 

Begin the series here

Day #13

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