Hopefully your greeters are doing more than just being an obstacle to get around.
Gary Zandstra · November 29, 2016
Forget the greeter, give me an advocate
I don’t know about you, but when I visit someplace new I rarely go alone. I usually take a guide (someone who has been to the place before) or a friend that I can share the uncomfortableness that I feel when visiting new places.
There is something about being with someone you know, experiencing something new. I also think there is something even better that happens when someone who already knows the territory takes your around.
Now, in general churches do a good job of greeting people. You know the couple standing at the door wearing a name tag and a glued-on smile. They are eager to shake your hand and say welcome.
I have had the question on my mind, “Why do we just have greeters and not advocates?” An advocate is someone who is on your side. They are there to help you succeed.
So what is the difference between a greeter and an advocate?
A greeter says hi, an advocate steps in and helps.
When you walk in the door, a greeter does just what the name says, they greet you. One of the large chain superstores has greeters at the door. At least in my area the greeters are nothing more than an obstruction to walk around as you enter the store.
Hopefully your greeters are doing more than just being an obstacle to get around. A good greeter will smile, be courteous and give a warm welcome.
At the same chain store I have never heard a greeter add on to the welcome statement, “how can I help you?” Right there with that question a greeter now becomes an advocate, a person that is there to help.
So have your greeters add the simple question “how can I help you?” right after the hello. Also the greeter (now advocate) should introduce themselves. You want to know the name of the person that is advocating for you.