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Winning Ways:
The Funeral Profession’s Guide to Human Relations

Winning Ways:The Funeral Profession’s Guide to Human RelationsQuantity in Basket:none

Shipping Weight: 1.00 pounds
by Todd W. Van Beck

Written for the funeral service industry by a funeral service professional, this unique book is devoted to human relations. Emphasizing service excellence and communications skills, this text takes an easy-to-read, common sense approach to the funeral profession. Topics of interest include building a professional attitude, dealing with difficult situations, enhancing funeral director skills and funeral service etiquette.


  • Only book on the market fully devoted to funeral service human relations
  • Contains special section on dealing with difficult situations
  • Includes numerous case studies that help reinforce principles and concepts
  • Provides tips on improving communication between director and families

About the Author:

Todd W. Van Beck is a noted author, lecturer and seminar leading in the area of funeral service, cemetery work and clergy activities. He is a graduate of New England Institute at Mount Ida College, Mount Mercy College, Mount Saint Mary's Seminary and has attended Boston University.

Mr. Van Beck is also a Certified Funeral Service Practitioner with the Academy of Professional Funeral Service Practice and is Dean of the Funeral College at the University of Memphis for the International Cemetery and Funeral Association.


  • Binding: Softbound
  • Size: 6" x 9"
  • Pages: 224
  • Illustrations: Many cartoon-style illustrations

Comments by Abbott & Hast Publications Publisher Ron Hast:

Most of us are victims of habit and do not realize that our conduct, while well intended, may fall short of more acceptable and appreciated demeanor. Every person involved with the care of the dead and funeral service owes it to themselves, as well as employees, employers, colleagues and client families to gain the knowledge and wisdom expressed in this unique, well-written book. A joy to read, you will appreciate the numerous examples of typical opportunities and methods to serve others effectively, with a sense of pride. Author Todd Van Beck is a true leader and gentleman in funeral service.

Table Of Contents:

  • Foreword by Rabbi Earl A. Grollman
  • Preface
  • Ten Ways This Book Will Benefit You
  • Section I: Service Excellence
    • 1. This Thing Called Service
    • 2. Service
    • 3. What Do Mistakes Cost?
    • 4. Your Actions Reflect Your Thoughts
    • 5. Dependability
    • 6. The Funeral Home’s Personality
    • 7. Clues To Serving The Family
  • Section II: The Winning Professional Attitude
    • 8. Sell The Funeral Home
    • 9. Client Appreciation
    • 10. Enthusiasm
    • 11. "So What?"
    • 12. Stand by Your Word
    • 13. Professional Arrogance
    • 14. The Funeral Professional Requires Tolerance
    • 15. Patience in the Selection Room
    • 16. The Funeral Home Gopher
    • 17. Approval
    • 18. Flattery
  • Section III: Difficult Situations
    • 19. Client Complaints
    • 20. The Cynic
    • 21. Coolness Under Fire
    • 22. Handling the Difficult Family
    • 23. Getting Back in Their Good Graces
    • 24. The Unreasonable Family
    • 25. The Silent Family
  • Section IV: Funeral Directors Skills
    • 26. Confidentiality
    • 27. The Power of Names
    • 28. The Value of Listening
    • 29. Confidence in Funeral Service
    • 30. Funeral Professionals Are Always Diplomats
    • 31. Tact
    • 32. What Impressions Do You Create?
    • 33. Why Argue?
    • 34. The Art of Persuasion
    • 35. Communication Blunders
  • Section V: Communicating With Families
    • 36. Make It Easier for Families to Deal With You
    • 37. Families Are Not Mind Readers
    • 38. Through the Families’ Eyes
    • 39. Put Yourself in the Other Person’s Shoes
    • 40. The Timid Family
    • 41. Advice
  • Section VI: Funeral Service Etiquette
    • 42. The Power of “Thank You”
    • 43. Old-Fashioned Manners
    • 44. The Impression You Give
    • 45. Over-Familiarity Breeds Resentment
  • Section VII: Our Noble Profession (Inspirational Readings About Funeral Service)
    • 46. The Funeral of the Unknown Soldier
    • 47. The Honorable Profession
    • 48. Code of Professional Ethics for the Funeral Service Practitioner
    • 49. A Winning Personality
    • 50. "The Undertaker"