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Biggest Struggles: How to handle “customer service”

Jeff Thompson —  September 26, 2012 — Leave a comment

Here’s the struggle… Does “customer service” even apply to the relationship between a mission provider and a youth ministry?  Or between a youth worker and a parent.  Between the youth leader and a student.  Or the board.  Or…  How does this all work?

There are aspects of what we do as the folks that organize and plan mission trips for other people that feel like a business.  People pay us for the service we offer.  I guess in that sense we have customers.  And we owe those customers the service we promised.  And when we fail to keep that promise they have a right to be disappointed with us.  And trust me… people get very “disappointed” with us.  But I know we’re not alone.

Has a parent ever been disappointed with an event you planned?  Has your pastor ever been “disappointed” with your numbers?  I know that has happened.  It happened to me all the time when I was in church ministry.  I even got yelled at a few times.  It hurt.  I wanted to lash out right back to them.  I wanted to tell them how unfair they were being.  I wanted to say so many things… But I knew better.  I knew that I needed to be concerned about what they thought.  I knew I couldn’t blow them off.

That’s the same way we approach “customer service” in our ministry.  We are also disappointed when we let down a youth leader or church.  We’re disappointed to let someone else in ministry down.  It’s our job to support and do our best for them.  So… regardless of how they react to us, we try our best to serve them – to make whatever it was better.

If that’s customer service, then we’re all for that!


Jeff Thompson

Jeff Thompson

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Jeff Thompson, a veteran of youth ministry, serves as the Director of Youth Missions for Group Mission Trips - Workcamps, Week of Hope and The Big Day of Serving.

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