Three Important Takeaways from Training


It was three long days of drinking from the fire hose.

Every year, I add to my consulting toolbox by attending some form of educational event. My goal is to pick up some new concepts or business strategies that I can use to help grow my clients’ businesses.

Last week I attended a three-day business-building workshop. The material was fantastic, and my consulting toolbox is overflowing.

I took notes as fast as possible and highlighted everything that needs to be considered when growing a funeral home business. Suffice it to say; I have some great information to share with you over the coming year.

In this newsletter, I’ll share three of the topics from the training that struck me as being directly applicable to the challenges faced by most funeral home owners.

Topic #1 – Business is a machine that makes money

Many funeral home owners struggle to walk the fine line between business and ministry. They know that they have to make a profit, but they also see themselves as providing compassionate care for families in their community.

When you’re wearing your Funeral Director hat, it’s important to stay on the ministry side of the line. But when you take off your Funeral Director hat, you have to put on your Funeral Business Builder hat and think of your business as a machine that is supposed to make money.

If your business makes money, you can provide a higher level of care to the families you serve, give jobs to people in your community, and provide for your family. Those are all good things.

If your business does not make money, your machine is broken, and it’s your job to fix it. If you fail to fix it, then everything falls apart, and everyone loses.

Topic #2 – Stop spending and start investing

Part of making sure that your business functions as a well-oiled machine is to stop wasting the profits. You need to stop spending money and start investing it instead.

When you make that shift, the critical question becomes, “If I invest X, what return can I expect?”. And you have to discipline yourself to ask that question every time you pull out your credit card or checkbook.

If you invest in a new social media campaign, what return can you expect?

If you invest in a new multimedia system for your chapel, what return can you expect?

If you invest in a case management system, what return can you expect?

In my business, I always aim to provide my clients with a 10X return on investment. If someone spends $50k with me, I want to make sure that their revenue goes up by at least $500k. For most of them, that means winning roughly 50 more full-service calls, which should be very achievable if we implement my strategies correctly.

Topic #3 – Your personal mission is the starting point

When I first started consulting with business owners, I assumed that everyone wanted to grow their business. I was wrong.

Clients always said that they wanted to grow, but they wouldn’t take steps to fix their machine and grow their business. In many ways, they were their own worst enemies.

In the training class, they introduced us to a new course called “Hero On A Mission.” This course aims to help the business owner and the entire team get very clear on their personal life goals.

Once your personal life goals and business goals are in alignment, growth is possible.

Interestingly enough, the starting point of the Hero On A Mission course is to write your own eulogy. The instructor described how they want people to start at their Celebration of Life ceremony and then figure out how to live a life worth celebrating.

Now that’s a concept my funeral home clients can understand!

Those are just the first three of the takeaways I’ll be sharing with you in the coming year. The overall program is called Business Made Simple, and I’m now one of their Certified Business Coaches.

Too many funeral homes struggle because the owner is a great Funeral Director but has never been trained on how to grow a business. Some of my new tools will help me fix that problem.

Until next time

John

John Callaghan

Fractional Chief Marketing Officer for Funeral Business Builders

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