10 Tasks That Will Make You A Better Funeral Pro In 10 Minutes Or Less
Originally Posted on the funeralOne Blog
I don’t know about you, but I fell off the wagon on my New Year’s Resolutions about two weeks into 2017… and I’m sure I’m not the only one.
For instance, maybe you downloaded one of our top nine tools that could help bring you funeral success in the New Year, and just never got around to investing the time into learning how to use them. Or perhaps you read our article on the skills you need to be a better funeral professional in 2017, but you couldn’t devote the time to developing them.
The truth is, the funeral profession is a 24/7, 365 profession, and there isn’t always a lot of time to set aside to explore a new hobby, reinvent yourself, learn a new skill, or any of the other common resolutions that people make when the clock turns January 1st. Heck, funeral professionals are lucky if they get a full eight hours of sleep, or even a 10 minute break between arrangement conferences.
But just because you may not have the time to devote to an ambitious resolution doesn’t mean that you can’t grow or get better at your job. In fact, sometimes 10 minutes is all it takes to completely change your success.
To help prove our point, here are 10 simple tasks that will make you a better funeral professional this year (and next)… all in 10 minutes or less.
1. Get Organized
When it comes to setting yourself up for success, whether it’s in your professional life or your personal life, the first thing that you should do is take a step back and organize your space. Clear out the clutter from your desk, empty your email inbox, delete the junk from your computer’s desktop, clean out your office… do whatever it takes to give yourself a clean slate to think and start off on the path towards success. Your mind can solve problems and think much more clearly when it doesn’t have to process all of the junk and clutter that is around you.
2. Add A New Answer To Your Funeral Home’s “Frequently Asked Questions” Page
One of the best things that funeral professionals can do to make themselves better is to better educate their families, whether it’s about service options or just about funerals in general. That way, the families who are walking in your door will have a better understanding of the value that you provide and will have an overall better funeral experience when they meet with you.
If you don’t already have a frequently asked questions page set up on your website, you’re missing out on a simple, yet effective way to better educate your community. Each week, all you need to do is take a few minutes to answer one question that you are commonly asked by families on your FAQ page, and before you know it, you will have an in-depth resource page right on your funeral home website that will better serve your community for years to come.
3. List Out What You Want To Accomplish Tomorrow
Too much of our time each day is spent thinking through what we need to do, trying to remember our priorities, and worrying about whether or not we have forgotten any important tasks we were supposed to get done. However, all of these problems could be solved if we simply got everything we needed to do out of our heads. Before you leave work each night, spend 10 minutes creating a list of all of the things that you want to accomplish the next day, and rank them in order of priority. When you walk in the next morning, you will be ready to hit the ground running, rather than having to waste time thinking about what your day ahead looks like.
4. Read An Educational Funeral Article
Your families are not the only ones who should be learning more about the funerals each day. In a profession that is changing as frequently and drastically as funerals, there is always a new thing to learn, a new way of thinking to discover, a new product or service that is launching, or a better way to connect with the families that you serve. Spend 10 minutes each day reading up on the latest funeral news and trends, whether it’s while you’re enjoying your morning cup of coffee or while you’re on your lunch break. To help you get started, here is a list of the top 10 funeral articles of the last year that every funeral professional should read.
5. Set Up A Social Media Profile For Your Funeral Home
The number of small businesses that do not yet have a Facebook, Twitter or Google+ page to connect with their audience is getting smaller and smaller every day. But if you are one of the few remaining people out there who is still not sold on why social media is one of the single best things you can do for your small business, it’s time to face the facts… your families are making their purchasing decisions based on what they see online. And having instant access to businesses on websites like Facebook are a part of that purchasing decision. All it takes is less than 10 minutes to set up a social media account for your funeral home, and you will be blown away at just how big of an impact this action can have.
6. Create A ”Stop, Start, Keep” Plan
One of our favorite exercises that we like to do at the funeralOne office when we feel like we need to re-group and re-focus ourselves is called “Stop, Start, Keep.” Essentially, you create a vision for yourself – where do you want to be next week? Next month? Next year? From there, you create three lists… what things do you need to stop doing to reach your vision? What things do you need to start doing to reach your vision? What things do you need to keep doing to reach your vision? This will give you a clear path for success that you can tape on a wall and look at every day to re-align yourself when you feel like you are losing sight of where you are going.
7. Send A Follow-Up Card To One Of Your Families
Too many funeral professionals think that their service to a family ends the second that the funeral is over. However, if you truly want to build a relationship with the families in your community and keep them coming back to your funeral home, you need to build a lasting line of communication. Set an alert on your calendar to reach out to the families you serve in the weeks or months that follow their loved one’s funeral service, or on the anniversary of their loved one’s passing. Then spend 10 minutes writing out a “thinking of you” card or sending them a personal note. This simple little gesture can go a long way towards building a lasting relationship of compassion and care.
8. Streamline Your Work With A Click-And-Go Program
Sometimes (in fact, most times) you simply can’t do it all. If you feel like you are drowning with too many tasks or services at your funeral home, look for opportunities or resources that allow you to outsource or streamline some of your day-to-day work. For example, Life Tributes is a memorial software created specifically to make the process of Memorial Videos, Printing and Webcasting easier and faster for funeral professionals. In just 10 minutes, you can upload your families’ photos and videos, and click to create a Hollywood-style memorial video… all with a few simple clicks.
9. Turn A Commonly Written Email Message Into A Template
Far too often, we spend hours and hours of each day answering questions that we have answered before… especially when it comes to the questions and inquiries that find their way into our email inbox. Instead of re-typing your responses to the common questions that you get via email each and every day, spend 10 minutes creating a professional response template that you can access any time you get a common email from a family or funeral vendor. You will never have to spend your time crafting out the perfect response to, “How much are your services?” or “What hotels are near your funeral home?” again.
Last, but not least, being a better funeral professional (or any kind of professional, really) starts with personal wellness. Sometimes one of the best thing that you can do for your mental and physical health is to cut yourself off from the world around you, take a deep breath and relax. If you are having a particularly stressful day, don’t let your emotions or your stress get the better of you. Take ten minutes to find a quiet place in your office (or even outside) where you can close your eyes, clear your mind and let yourself meditate your stress away.