Best Practices

Educate, don’t inform. If you’re an employee that is dealing directly with a grieving family member or someone who is looking to pre-plan his or her funeral services, you need to have a mindset of education rather than simply informing them of their options. Take the time to talk to them about the Order of Christian funerals, what their options are, how much everything will cost and how they can tailor different plans to fit their needs. Informing them implies that you’re not taking the time to make sure they understand. Educating means to go the extra mile and make sure they walk out of your presence feeling self-assured and knowledgeable.

Outreach. You can’t expect families within your diocese or your community to know your funeral home/cemetery exists when their loved one dies or what their options are in case they decide to pre-plan. As a steward of faith, you should be out in the community or in the parishes telling people about your services so they know how to find you.

Serve. Family’s come first, and your mindset and actions should reflect that. You don’t try to upsell them or push products and services on them that they don’t want or need. In the end, it’s not your funeral, it’s theirs, and you should be serving their needs instead of your own.

Exceed expectations when it comes to courtesy and trust. If you’re dealing with an at-need family, you’re with them on what could be the worst day of their life. Let them talk about their loved one who has just passed. Ask questions about him/her. Be genuinely interested in the life he or she held. This will not only put a family at ease but it will also help you know what direction to guide this family when choosing a funeral plan. If you’re dealing with a pre-need situation, remember that planning one’s demise is not a day at the ballpark. It’s not fun to think about when we’ll pass from this earth; it can be stressful and scary. Remind that person that once their plan is finalized you’re still there for them no matter what kind of issues or questions may arise.

Take pride in what you’re doing. You’re a part of one of the Works of Mercy and are accompanying a family on an incredible journey. You’re helping to facilitate, in a smooth and stress free manner, one of the hardest moments they’ll ever go through. Take pride in choosing this profession and remember that you’re doing the Lord’s work each day.

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