Even Guzzardo’s takes Visa

by | Aug 23, 2012 | Church Planting

I will never forget taking a potential church planting couple to a recruiting dinner in a small Midwestern town.  Great time, good vibes, and when I gave the waitress my Visa card to pay, she said, “We don’t take credit cards, only cash.”  Or she said, “If you don’t have it, you can take the bill home and mail us a check.  We find we lose less money from bad debts than we’d pay in credit card fees.”

Fast forward 10 years, last time I was at Guzzardo’s they took credit cards.  I don’t think people got less honest, I think they found that they were missing opportunities.  On a snowy cold night, when a hungry couple wanted a pizza delivered and didn’t have cash, they called Pizza Hut.  Guzzardo’s had better pizza, but Pizza Hut took credit cards.

If you don’t have online giving at your church, even your brand new church plant, you are missing opportunities to let your people share in giving.  If the only way a person can give is in the plate with a check or cash, many people will feel led to give, but will not have the means.

Putting a giving kiosk in your lobby (even for porta-church you can do this) gives another option.  One leader I talked with recently said that most of their first time givers came through their kiosk.

The reality is, people don’t carry cash anymore.  I used to take $200 on a week trip and sometimes run low.  I now take $100 in case I run into another Guzzardo’s, but I usually return with $94 because we just don’t use cash anymore.  My wife used to carry the check book in her purse, but that’s now a thing of the past.  So,  if you want to help people with their stewardship and generosity, give them opportunities to do so by having online giving and a giving kiosk.

It may feel strange for awhile, but I’m sure the first time they passed offering baskets instead of taking chickens and eggs, it felt weird as well.

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Marcus Bigelow

Marcus is an 18-year veteran in leadership and organizational coaching. He has coached hundreds of leaders and entrepreneurs — motivating and mentoring CEOs, presidents, and business owners to increase their leadership impact and grow profitability through peer-to-peer collaboration and one-to-one coaching. Marcus teaches Vision Casting for Hope International University, is certified in Life Planning and Strategic Planning through the Paterson Center, and coaches many leaders in the for-profit and non-profit arena. He is the co-author of “Better Together: Networks and Church Planting” and “Church Planting from the Ground Up.” Both works are applicable in non-profit and for-profit sectors and focus on building effective, reproducible and scalable processes and teams. He is currently the Northern California of Sacramento Chair of Convene™. In his spare time, Marcus enjoys woodworking, fly fishing, and marathon running.