This experience happened to me this past weekend.
It’s a great reminder for our greeters about the relational warmth that is communicated.
Note: This video was recorded in 2009. Technology has gotten much better and future videos will reflect that.
If your greeters remembered this one tip, what kind of impact do you think they would have on your church visitors?
What other tips would you give to your greeters?
Leave us your thoughts below.
Cyndy Sumbad says
I think it is good to “square-off” or to fully face the person you are greeting, making sure they have your FULL ATTENTION. Making eye contact is essential, acknowledging the person by name (if you know the person, of course) with a smile is fantastic. A warm “how are you? or good morning!” also goes a long way regardless of whether you know the person or not.
@Cyndy: Thanks for sharing tonight. . It’s indeed such simple things we forget, and sometimes nervous first time greeters forget as well.
Dominoes pizza has a big PR problem on its hands because some employees posted a video on YouTube.
This week The CEO released a video on YouTube, full of corporate speak, yet passionately expressing his apologies and actions the company is taking to make sure that doesn’t happen again.
Not once did he look into the camera.
There is something about looking at the person you are talking to that makes a great impression. Not looking makes one wonder about sincerity.
Nick Zerda says
Barack Obama is a gifted speaker when he is reading from a teleprompter, but I don’t get any connection with him because he does not “look at me”. His head is moving from side to side. It is very important to look at another person’s eyes while you are talking to him.
Church Administrator - WELC says
We greet with a smile so we look for a smile back.
Sometime our Good Morning also has a handshake. It depends on what time of the morning. If close to service time, we say hello and help to find them a seat. We had performed a separate greeting time within our service so that you can go over to someone and greet them that morning. The Pastor also leave the pulpit to greet people before continuing the service.
Eye contact is very important for everyone coming through the doors. We also need to consider that these greeters are there to greet everyone, not just visitors or people who may be somewhat new. As the administrator, I sometimes stand near the greeters offering an additional personal hello to everyone who comes in the door and by name if possible…”Good to see you, Joe” or “It’s great to see the Smiths today?” The change in demeanor is very visible for everyone who is personally greeted. Kids smile, parents get away from their frazzled “we made it here” look, young people look up and smile. And it’s an encouragement to me too.
Bradley Leggett says
In regards to body language I always coach greeters to point their heart to the visitors heart. ( Heart to Heart ) That helps force direct contact with the visitor and helps remind us to deal directly with the one in which we are speaking.
somewhere along the way our church greeters had made a habit of hugging folks as they came in the door, i know some people do not particularly care for this idea,and on the internet there was this little blurb about making as little personal contact with other folks as you can during this swine flu era, so i have decided to just extend my hand and if people like to shake it and be greeted that way they can. i am hoping that the habit if hugging does not offend everyone as i believe health habits here should prevail. what are your comments on this practice???
Chris Walker says
I’m not a fan of hugs for strangers.
It depends on your ministry context as well.
Different cultures have different ways of greeting that reflect perceived intimacy.
On one of my mission trips, the person I offered to shake hands with would grab my wrist.
At first, I thought I was missing their hand, but after several people did that, I asked around and learned that the wrist grab was a sign of closeness, as if “I welcome you in my circle.”
Another one — between men and women, it’s a handshake for the first greeting between strangers before a worship service, but a cheek to cheek air kiss when the meeting is over.
What is culturally appropriate in your area? Hugs between strangers? If not, then don’t do it. It’s more than a health issue.
I invite other comments from subscribers.. . .
Howard Yonce says
Greeters should wear nametags. That visual as you greet the vistor for the first time gives them one more chance to remember your name and smile.
Carol Martin says
Have a firm handshake!
Dr. Evaline L. Foster says
Great Tip. I always thank my guest for coming, tell the to enjoy services and do come again
Dr. Evaline L. Foster says
Richard Lopez says
I’m a firm believer that ushers should have and wear name tags that identify them as such. Take movie theaters for example, no one has any problem identifying them and approaching them for any question concerning the venue.
Our church ushers should also be able to be spotted in a crowd and be prepared for any question. Or to escort someone where they’re trying to go given their post isn’t left unattended. (That brings up other subjects for other discussions)
Just a few thoughts.
Maureen ollivierre says
While approaching someone to shake their hands, please be enthusiastic, friendly and please have a real smile.
Maureen ollivierre says
Personally I love to hug people.I can usually sence by a person’s actions or body movement what their preference maybe.A hand shake and verbal greeting,or a hug and verbal greeting. I do believe that greeters/ ushers should stand out in a croud wearing uniforms and badges etc. But i disagree with the name tags,it takes away eye contact with the vistor. We must also remember that not everyone can read, some may also have to take their eye glasses out.A true smile ,a hug verbally asking their name and saying yours is so much more pleasant or pleasing.
Charmaine B. says
Robert Shaw says
During flu season, participants who fear they might be contagious follow a practice we learned from a missionary to Thailand. We place our palms together and bow slightly to honor the presence of God in the person we greet. [Those who might be contagious are excused as greeters.]
We also keep a bottle of hand sanitizer at the greeter’s station and in the pulpit.
Very important tip!
Mary Jackson says
Chris, Thanks for the greeters tips, I am learning what is expected of a greeter. The video above was a remainder that eye contact is very important. Some one commented that President Obama, does not make eye contact when reading they do not either if they think about it. Keep up the encouragement to improve greeters ministry. May God bless you.