Thanksgiving is a special time of year because no matter your faith, spirituality, or religion, everyone in this country comes together for a day of gratitude. Let's give a collective thanks for the following...
1. Our entire team and support staff
Funeral homes have such an excellent support staff that are really the backbone of the organization. Door greeters, funeral assistants, office managers, apprentices, car washers, accountants, and more all play an integral role in the daily operations of the funeral home. Not only are they great at what they do, they are loyal too. I met with one funeral home this week who had a gentleman who has worked at the funeral home since he was 13... he is now in his 80's.
2. The ability to help the community
With the stress of the holiday season on top of the time of year where the funeral industry tends to get busy, we can easily forget to give thanks for our ability to help the community and make a difference. Families need a funeral director. They need that person to provide care, comfort and empathy and sometimes this can be stressful. What we need to remember is that often times our families give us just as much and sometimes even more than we can ever give them.Every day through helping those in our community, we are taught about love, faith, hope and more as we watch and help those families grieve.
3. The Failures
We gloss over them, we unintentionally blame them on other people (even though we know its our fault) and we want to forget them...failures. Who hasn't had an idea that failed? I know one thing though, that for every failure there is at least one learning experience. Have you had an idea that failed this year? Think about what you and others learned and gained from that failed experience. Give thanks for the failures, because at minimum at least you won't make the same mistake again, but hopefully you gained a learning experience that changed your perspective.
4. The Business Itself
We work so hard to build our business up that we never even tend to give thanks for the opportunities it affords us and our families. While you may have to leave the 8th hole on the golf course or the warmth of your bed at 2:39 am for a death call, its easy to forget about the opportunities it affords. Owning a business allows us to be in control of our life. It affords us the flexibility live our lives how we would like - to attend our child's thanksgiving play at school, to live in the area and the house we want to live in, to send our high school graduates to college, and perhaps even a business to pass onto the next generation.
5. Our Families
Our families sacrifice so much for us in the funeral industry so that we can serve our families, help others and pursue what we love. Our spouses understand when we come home a little "off beat" when we have had a difficult day; our caregivers help care for our children when we have to unexpectedly leave for work or have a long day; our parents who pass down their wisdom based on their "#3's" and the learning experiences they gained. Our families are often the foundation of the strength it takes to serve this industry.
So thank you to our loyal staff, for the ability to give back to the community, for our failures, for our businesses, and to our families.
And on a more personal note, thank you to all my readers of The Funeral Gal. I can only hope that I can help you, your business and consequently the families you serve - and if I have achieved that at even only one funeral home - I am thankful for that this Thanksgiving.