Business leaders have a lot on their plate, but one of the biggest things they must do is attract customers and keep them coming back for more. Pastor Chris Hodges, the leader and founding pastor at Church of the Highlands, says that the way to do this is by creating the “wow” experience.
This can be done not only for congregants at a church but also customers or clients at a business. If they’re able to create that “wow” experience, they’ll be making a difference in the lives of people.
“What can we do in our homes, our businesses and especially at our churches to add ‘wow’ to the experience?” Hodges asks. “I want you to think of it in order of their experience as they arrive onto the property.”
Focus on the First 10 Minutes
There are many famous sayings about first impressions. The reason is that people form opinions on something based primarily around the first impression they get of something.
That’s why Pastor Chris Hodges of Church of the Highlands says it’s so important to focus on the first 10 minutes of a person’s arrival at your facility. This includes everything from them driving into the parking lot, finding a place to park, getting out of their car, walking into the building and checking in, if need be.
Considering Church of the Highlands, there are so many things that happen to those who are attending service before the service even begins.
“The point is, we work so hard on our messages, and there were eight things that happened to them before they even got to that part,” Hodges said.
This same concept can be applied not just to church service but to businesses everywhere — no matter where your facility is located and even if the facility is less than ideal.
Focus on the Messaging
Messaging is extremely important, whether it be to members of a church or to potential customers. When crafting the message, it’s important to be aware of the fact that you’re delivering the message to not just people who are familiar with you but those who are being exposed to you for the first time.
That’s why Pastor Chris says it’s important to deliver messages that are interesting, clear, relevant, entertaining and transformational.
When he’s crafting messages for his congregation or for other leaders, Pastor Hodges says he’s always asking whether the message is relevant.
As he explains:
“The question I ask is, can they use it on Monday? Or, here’s the funnier question, does it pass the ‘who cares’ test? Does it really even matter?”
“We want to make sure that it’s not just inspirational on a Sunday, but it’s applicable on a Monday.”
Business leaders can use this same concept, ensuring that the message they are delivering isn’t only applicable to a particular sales pitch or only inspires employees in an individual meeting. They should be able to take that message out of that initial interaction and use it in their lives beyond.
When that happens, that’s when you know the message is not only relevant but effective.
About Chris Hodges
Pastor Chris Hodges, best known as the founding pastor of Church of the Highlands, a life-giving church with multiple campuses across Alabama and Georgia. He also is passionate about launching and equipping other local churches through his co-founding of the Association of Related Churches (ARC) and founding of GrowLeader, a coaching network that trains and equips pastors and churches globally. He is also Chancellor Highlands College, a ministry training school committed to launching students into full-time ministry careers. Chris is a devoted family man, happily married to Tammy and proud father of five children in Birmingham, Alabama.