Back to business…Starbucks and the Church, part 4

There’s nothing new right now on the Derek Webb front. Stay tuned here.

This morning on Twitter, I learned about a cool little app called TweetStats. You can see all the details of your tweets, and even make a word cloud, which you can send to Wordle. Here’s the wordle from all of my tweets:

I’ve been reading from the Gospel of Mark over the past week. I’m currently in chapter 2, Jesus has just called upon Levi (Matthew) to follow him. As is the case with the others, the response is immediate. I think this is interesting…Jesus calls fishermen, tax collectors, people with nothing to gain by remaining in their current task and everything to lose by following Him. When I think of my own response to Jesus, I wonder why I’m not like the disciples. Perhaps I’m complacent in my place, my sin. Maybe I haven’t hit bottom yet, I’m not at the point where I see that remaining where I am will lead to sadness, disappointment and death. Rationally, I know and understand. But otherwise, I’m not so sure.

Back from hiatus….the Starbucks/Church video conversation…today’s lesson is from “Reserved for the Barista“, and it’s about signage (watch the video-above and to the right-for a refresher). Before I go much further here, our current building has some issues, and we are in the process of resolving many of them. We’ve been meeting with architects and have some great ideas and plans. We’re in process of fundraising. From the “Reserved for the Barista” post:

“In our video, there were two signage statements we were making—one blatant and another hidden. The “RESERVED FOR…” parking signs did the job that signs do: they expressed value. They said, “These people are important to us.” In our video, the visitors were not valued, just the ones who ran the show: the barista, the manager and the manager’s wife. Without realizing they were doing it, they were saying with signage that, “These are the preeminent people. This is who we value as an organization.”

The hidden statement is that there were no signs for visitors whatsoever. Not parking signs, not welcome signs, not even signs telling them where to enter. In our original cut, we had the couple ask, “Where do we go in?” They were confused about where to enter and ended up just walking where the crowd was headed. Lack of signage simply told them they weren’t important.”

What follows is not a dig at anyone or anything having to do with Eastview, it’s simply a response to the above.

Our church currently has 2 outdoor signs, one on Collins Rd and the other on Regal St, at the “back” or “secret” entrance to our west parking lot. Both are older signs, and while they do communicate that we are a church they need to be replaced. There are no signs directing foot traffic from the lot, and upon entering the building under the sign simply marked “Sanctuary”, there are no signs. Of course, we count on greeters inside the building on Sundays to point people around, but if someone comes in after the fact, or on a week day, there are no indications where to go.

“When we think about how valued we want the visitor to feel, we would all say it should be very high. The way you show that, is in the signage leading up to your entry, and then following that throughout your building.”

Why should we care about how a visitor feels? Richard Resing puts it this way, “Lack of signage in a church leaves the indefinable impression to a visitor that, “this church was not made for you. It was made for people who already know their way around.”

Or, as Jesus puts it, “It is not the healthy who need doctors, but the sick.”

When a critically ill person visits a hospital, they follow the signs, especially the ones in red that read “EMERGENCY ROOM.” Why should we not mark our buildings accordingly?


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Filed under derek webb, gospel of mark, mark 2,, richard reising, Starbucks, stockholm syndrome, what if starbucks marketed like the church

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