Mortuary Musing
a mortuary science student's perspective on the study of the dead

Dollars and Sense

Funeral homes are a business. Like any other business, the goal is to maximize your profits and while keeping your expenses low. It is practical economics. Of course, the more money you make the better it is. One quote by Helen Gurley Brown is, "Money, if it does not bring you happiness, will at least help you be miserable in comfort."

However sometimes I listen to funeral directors talk about cremation and green burials as if they were an enemy that somehow needs to be dealt with. The issue some funeral directors have is they do not make as much money with cremation or green burials as they would with a traditional burial. In my opinion, ignoring or not wanting to perform these types of services is just plain dumb business.

The business environment is constantly changing, and unfortunately some funeral directors can be real stubborn. Both cremation and green burials have a market which there will be people wanting services for. True, you might not make as much money from these markets as you would from a traditional burial, but by ignoring these alternate services instead of embracing them you will be segregating yourself from a potential strong market.

Today there are individuals out there who choose cremation instead of burial due to their tradition or culture. Likewise, there are individuals out there today who are more environmentally friendly and are drawn to the idea of green burials. If you choose not to embrace these different type of services then you will struggle trying to receive their business.

As for me that is okay. If you do not want to change with the times, I am fine with that. I will be more than happy to do all those funerals that you prefer not to do. I will gladly serve all those people whose business you will lose, and embrace any choices they want for a final disposition. I will adjust to the changing environment, and draw in more customers and business as I meet people's needs. It's a dog eat dog world out there. You can learn to adapt with the times, or be left behind.

If you don't believe that then pick up an economics book.


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