May 3, 2019

Find Out What Families Want

We meticulously plan out our ministry calendar based on what we believe families will enjoy and want.

But without specifically finding out what parents want, some of our programming will fall flat. People vote with their feet and they simply don't show up.
 
Why does this happen?  A big reason is because we didn't take the time to personally ask parents what they want.

Walt Disney said this.

“You don’t build it for yourself. You know what the people want and you build it for them.”

In other words, before you start putting event and programming dates on your calendar, find out what parents want and use that to help you plan. 

So, how can you know what parents want?  Surveys are a good way.  You can use Survey Monkey for this. 

You can also talk with parents individually to get personal insight into they want.  Make it a goal to connect with 1 or 2 parents each week to get their feedback, ideas and insight.

One of the best methods is to have a parent focus group two times a year.  Bring a group of 8 to 10 parents in and ask them face-to-face what they want in children's ministry.  I talk more about this in this article and provide the specific questions you want to ask parents.

Let's go back to Walt Disney and see how he implemented finding out what families want.  As Disneyland was being constructed, Walt was asked by some employees about building an administration building for management.  The idea didn't go over very well with Walt.  Look what he said in response to this request.

“When it was suggested that an administration building be erected for the management at Disneyland, Walt was vehemently opposed. ‘I don’t want you guys sitting behind desks,” he said. ‘I want you out in the park, watching what people are doing and finding out how you can make the place more enjoyable for them'.” And, when Walt learned that his staff had been leaving the property to eat lunch, he steamed. ‘Stand in line with the people…don’t go off the lot to eat like you guys have been doing. You eat at the park and listen to the people'!”

Walt believed so strongly in this area that he had a personal apartment built inside Disneyland.  It's still there today - right above the Fire Station when you first enter the park.  From the windows of this apartment, Walt could watch families as they entered the park and see what their first impression was.

To this day, you will find leaders at the Disney parks, out among the people. Asking for and looking for information about how they are enjoying the experience and for ways to make it even better.

Do you know what the families in your ministry want? 

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