In the last month, we have been contacted by four different churches that made the mistake of telling the wrong person about what we do. Please understand, we act with the utmost integrity and our founder, Greg Atkinson, is passionate about the “secret” in secret shopper.

Here recently we’ve been contacted by senior pastors, executive pastors, worship pastors and first impressions directors. The problem is that we only deal with senior pastors or executive pastors. This is important to know to understand our process. What we do is strategic and beneficial for the entire organization and should be handled and taken seriously by senior leadership.

One of the situations that happened recently was an executive pastor contacted us and copied his First Impressions Director in on the email and said he’d “let him handle the details”. We don’t do that. Greg has too much integrity and believes too strongly in the “secret” of our secret shopper service that he won’t just take your money and do a disservice to your church.

Here’s the why or strategy behind what we do. If your worship pastor knows we’re coming, he’ll change his set list and pick all zingers and plan the service with us in mind, instead of us just witnessing a typical Sunday. If your first impressions director knows we’re coming, he’ll put his best people up to greet, usher and park cars. Please understand: If we come all the way out to your church and see your A-team and don’t get to observe a typical Sunday that no one has specially prepared for, YOU LOSE. Picture this: If we observe your best of the best in action and don’t find anything wrong, you’ve wasted your money. If you know we’re coming and tell your people to “be on their toes”, you’ve wasted your money. We believe in being good stewards of God’s money and resources and see this as an investment for your church – a wise investment that will reap fruit, but you have to play by our rules.

So, what can you do and how should you handle our company? If you’re the senior pastor, contact us and deal directly with us. If you have an executive pastor and want him to handle the arrangements, that’s fine, too. Both of you should know that you are the only two people in the church to know what’s going on and the details of our trip to your church. If you’re another staff member (youth pastor, worship pastor, first impressions director, communications director, etc.), we appreciate your interest in our service and urge you to pass our information up the ladder and get it in the hands of your senior pastor or executive pastor. After that, forget about us and don’t ask if or when we’re coming.