Visitors to the Mediterranean port of Antalya, Turkey can enjoy views of Roman and Byzantine structures and a picturesque fishing and pleasure port, and then take home a vast assortment of crafts and products like these delicious spices. Antalya was the world’s fourth most visited city (by number of international arrivals) in 2011. Photo by Walt Bilofsky
Want to see more than just the headlines and abstracts?
- Perspectives from the Top!
Editorial by Ron Hast
This month Ron shares some words of wisdom from others in the funeral industry.
- Colleague Wisdom
This month’s question: In years past, many funeral providers pledged full support to major suppliers to secure excellent connections for service, delivery and business support. Given trends of today, have you expanded your resources to include other suppliers, considering variety and profit opportunities?
- Business Concepts
By Douglas O. Meyer
Whether you have been in business for some time or are just starting one, you owe it to yourself to learn certain fundamental business concepts. Of course, you want to serve families and focus on your profession, but failure to understand these basic concepts can cause problems and cost you money.
Meyer discusses how knowing the business of business will help you in your business.
- Good Grief!
By Beacham McDougald
Grief — most in funeral service do not truly pause to remember what this often-used term means. If it were a color, what shade would it be? Intense, bright, maybe dark? Likewise, how we deal with grief and hopefully move forward is determined by how clearly we can define it. McDougald recounts two very different examples of personal grief and what it meant to him.
- Acquisition Strategy
By Glenn Gould
Some visionary in the 1990s prophesied that, on average, every funeral business would change hands multiple times — thus, anyone holding an equity position in a firm is likely considering buying, selling or both. You either regret missing out on the last round of acquisition by not taking advantage of the easily accessible money or regret rejecting all those offers. The good news is that many firms are for sale, and their expectations of the value of their business have come down to realistic levels. Will buyers be any smarter? What have we learned about operating acquired funeral homes we didn’t know before?
Gould relates how good acquisition strategy is good business for you.
- Five Secrets for Setting More Appointments by Phone!
By By Mike Brooks
Setting appointments with families to discuss their preneed goals and options is the cornerstone to successful revenue goal attainment. Funeral and cemetery directors rely on many techniques to create these opportunities, including sending mailers, surveys and coupons — and the tried-and-true practice of active door knocking or canvassing. But driving around and knocking on doors is not the most efficient way for advisors to spend their time. In this respect, the power of the telephone is unmatched, as it is the most powerful and effective way of reaching hundreds of people each week and the best opportunity for setting the most appointments. Brooks shows you how — to make the right calls.
California Funeral Service Governance Suffers from Pennsylvania Ills
The legal department of the State of California Cemetery and Funeral Bureau of the Department of Consumer Affairs has ruled that any person who inserts a needle into a decedent for the purpose of sewing or repairing incisions, or installing eye-caps for closure, requires a state-issued embalmer’s license. The ruling came following the question of the appropriate need to simply prepare a body for cremation or burial following an autopsy, or for identification viewing by the next of kin. In California and in many other states, the majority of deceased persons are not embalmed, but may be in a condition other than with “dignity and propriety” given simple attention to “clean up” from issues of death.
Whose responsibility is it to appropriately care for a decedent, especially if the family does not authorize embalming, has no concern about details or condition of a body following an autopsy, accident or natural occurrences? Is the mere containment of what “remains” within plastic or other wrappings suitable for “final care”? Ron explores these questions.
Commentary by Richard Callahan
When asked for his opinion of the primary cause of death care litigation and regulatory complaints, Callahan often struggles with the answer, he says. He’s considered the categorical issues in terms of frequency, but felt that there was a stronger common denominator. The answer came to him recently — beyond denial and slight arrogance, there is hubris. Callahan relates pertinent examples.
Oh, Faugh! People Can Be So Mean!
Commentary by Richard Callahan
Why do some folks in our profession use social media to trash the character and accomplishments of their peers? Has etiquette gone the way of the buggy whip? Stacey offers some suggestions on how you too “can work and play well with others” online.
- Samantha Ennis: A Study in Tenacious Commitment
By Kim Stacey
Despite her often-stated reservations about Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, Stacey has made some close connections with women funeral professionals through social media. Once such connection is Samantha Ennis. What impressed her about Samantha? A high level of commitment to the profession and a deep-seated drive to cultivate a life spent serving others. But she’s got an extra special “something” that will ultimately make hers a funeral service success story: tenacity. Stacey tells her story.
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|The Story Behind
Our Cover Photos
|During casual conversations
with our readers, we are occasionally asked why the scenic
covers of Mortuary Management have no relationship to funeral
service. Publisher Ron Hast explains that our covers are purposely
chosen to be supportive of the surroundings they are often
found in. “I recall visiting funeral establishment lobbies
over the years where trade magazines were visible. Covers
often carried lines about embalming and other issues that
could be disquieting to a bereaved family. We know that many
receptionists and others read trade journals during visitation
hours and covers are visible to others,” Ron says. Most
readers concur. The picturesque scenes are also representative
of the respect and enjoyment of nature by everyone at Abbott
& Hast Publications and have been the compliment of many.
Our magazines are mailed with the label on a removable
protective dust cover to allow viewing of the cover photograph
in its entirety. Select cover photographs may be purchased
by calling (800) 453-1199.