Workshops - Sunday, October 20
SAVE TIME! Print your workshop handouts before you come to Austin. Handouts are available here.
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Collections in Tough Economic Times: Ideas That Will Work for Your Business
Marty Ludlum, J.D., University of Central Oklahoma College of Business, Edmond, Oklahoma
Virtually every funeral home owner and manager struggles with overdue accounts. Ludlum will share ideas that make sense and will work for your firm in any economy. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act will be discussed. This interactive session is styled in a game show format that has been highly popular with other funeral service audiences. Learn how to collect those past-due accounts you thought hopeless using a simple, effective approach to productivity and profitability – and without violating consumer protection laws. (1 CE hour)
Family Business Disputes: Court is in Session
Linda Darby, CEO, Trigard Inc., Sunset Funeral Home, Danville, Illinois
Richard Darby, COO, Trigard Inc., Sunset Funeral Home, Danville, Illinois
Alan Creedy, Creedy & Company Business Advisors, Raleigh, North Carolina
Teamwork with a common mission is the cornerstone of any successful family business, but family relationships can derail that mission quickly. This session puts family relationships in funeral businesses under the spotlight to help you reconnect to the mission of serving families. Learn strategies for navigating these relationships as siblings and co-owners Linda and Rich Darby act out he said/she said family disputes shared by funeral professionals everywhere. If things get out of hand, visionary consultant Alan Creedy will mediate. The Darbys will offer insights and solutions for challenges presented by good and bad family relationships and for overcoming inherent family dysfunction. (1 CE hour)
Funeral Home/Cemetery Synergy = Satisfied Families: Success Strategies for Combo Firms and Stand-alones
Kenneth E. Varner, Cypress Lawn Funeral Home & Cemetery, Colma, California
If you own or manage a funeral home/cemetery combination, a stand-alone funeral home or cemetery or are thinking of buying or partnering with a local cemetery, Varner will show you how to manage for success and synergy. The total effect of your funeral home and its working relationship with a cemetery can have far-reaching customer service and profitability benefits for your business. Varner will share ways to implement the proven strategies that have contributed to his success. (1 CE hour)
Are You Ready for OSHA on December 1? How to Meet the Compliance Training Deadline for the Revised HazCom Standard
Edward M. Ranier, Law Office of Edward Ranier, Timonium, Maryland
Ensure that you and your staff are in compliance with the revised OSHA Hazard Communication Standard by December 1, 2013. Ranier will cover the portions of the standard that remain in effect, all compliance dates, safety data sheet revisions, new labelling requirements and site-specific training requirements and documentation for funeral home personnel. (1 CE hour)
Redesigning Customer Service for Outstanding Results
Lynn E. Ochiltree, CFSP, Ochiltree Funeral Service and Aftercare, Winterset, Iowa
To take your place as the funeral home of first choice in your market, you must offer premiere service and programs that are more than what families expect and be an active player deeply involved in your community. During this fast-paced, interactive session, learn about proven, ready-to-use, out-of-the-ordinary ideas that have helped Pursuit of Excellence winners redesign their customer service basics to go above and beyond to improve their community profile and their bottom lines. Come prepared to share successful programs and networking ideas that have made a powerful difference for the families you serve, your community, your employees and your future! (1 CE hour)
1:15 – 2:15 p.m.
Turn Phone Shoppers Into Customers
David Nixon, Nixon Consulting Inc., Chatham, Illinois
Knowing how to skillfully handle phone price shoppers represents one of the biggest challenges and opportunities for funeral homes today. Learn about the most common phone shopping traps, along with techniques and tactics to handle them. Having the skill to immediately differentiate services is crucial. Nixon will share proven techniques to convert phone shoppers into satisfied client families based on his research on telephone skills. (1 CE hour)
1:15 – 3:15 p.m.
How to Profit and Grow in a High-cremation Market
Kent Roduck, Profitable Cremation Solutions Ltd., Island Funeral Services, Comox Valley, British Columbia
Although firms in Canada and the United States are coming to terms with the increasing cremation rate, most are finding the transition from traditional services to cremation with minimal services difficult. Using proven examples, Roduck will show how a firm in a market with a 90 percent cremation rate (like his) can profit and grow in spite of the trends, and ideas can be quickly initiated to see real business benefits. You will learn how to improve your firm's bottom line and service perception through internal systems that work and give families more than they expect. (2 CE hours)
Reimagine and Reinvent Your Customer Service Edge
Rich Kizer and Georganne Bender, Kizer & Bender Speaking, St. Charles, Illinois
It's a competitive world out there – one firm does something cool for its customers, then the funeral home across town does the same. Eventually, every firm in your community is doing the same things to attract business. In this lively and fun session, Kizer and Bender will show you how to rely on the uniqueness of your business and people to regain your passion and refocus your vision. They'll share the latest findings on consumer "wish lists" from their funeral home focus groups and take you on a virtual tour of some unique funeral homes. (2 CE hours)
Strengthening Hospice Relationships for Better Service to Families
Patrick E. Lynch, Lynch & Sons Funeral Directors, Clawson, Michigan
Jennifer McBride, MA, FT, Horan & McConaty Funeral Service, Aurora, Colorado
Wendy Smith Thames, Carmon Community Funeral Homes, Windsor, Connecticut
In 2011, nearly 45 percent of deaths in the United States occurred under hospice care, so building a great relationship with hospice in your community is a must. Learn how resourceful funeral homes around the country have formed positive working relationships with hospice and how you can build closer, mutually beneficial relationships to make a difference for the families you serve. Gather practical ideas that will expand the level of care you provide and help your business as well. (2 CE hours)
2:15 – 3:15 p.m.
Hot Technologies 2014: It's #mobilesociallocal
James Spellos, Meeting U, Bayside, New York
Are you keeping up with the array of technological advancements that directly impact your business, your job and your career or does it seem as though you can barely keep pace? This session reviews what's new and way cool in technology within funeral service. Spellos returns with a fresh and fast-paced look at what's available now and what's coming, including the latest information about critical smartphone and iPad/tablet apps being used by the hospitality service industry. Learn how to recognize new technologies and apps that are changing funeral service, identify the tech tools that most impact your business and manage the flow of information using social curation tools. (1 CE hour)
3:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Pet Loss Services and Your Funeral Home: Co-branding to Create Success
Coleen Ellis, Two Hearts Pet Loss Center, Greenwood, Indiana
You have a pet loss services program, but how do you market it so that it supports your entire business enterprise? Many pet loss operations within funeral homes are not maximizing branding for both types of services. This session will take you through some incredibly creative marketing approaches to increase the awareness of a firm's pet loss program and show you how to effectively co-brand both deathcare services to maximize marketing efforts across your organization. (1 CE hour)
Funeral Homes and the Affordable Care Act: What Are Your Options?
Jamie Hasty, SESCO Management Consultants, Bristol, Tennessee
Make sure you understand the provisions and obligations of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Businesses of all sizes need to analyze all areas of this enacted legislation for compliance, as well as for areas of potential benefit. Hasty will present an overview of this legislation, and an analysis of employer responsibility will be covered in detail, with the opportunity to ask questions. Hasty will help you understand strategic decisions facing employer group health plans and learn practical tips to ensure that you meet the obligations of the healthcare law and avoid noncompliance penalties. (1 CE hour)
It's Only a Matter of Time: Are You Ready for Natural Burials and Green Funerals?
James Olson, CPC, Olson Funeral Home and Cremation Service, Sheboygan, Wisconsin
Olson will share his experiences and expertise, make recommendations on how to serve families seeking natural burial and green funeral services and discuss "green" versus "natural." He will also address profitability and how green funerals can help lower your cremation rate. (1 CE hour)
Cremation Due Diligence is in Your Hands: Implementing the Updated CANA/NFDA/ICCFA Joint Due Diligence Guide to Best Practices
T. Scott Gilligan, Gilligan Law Offices, Cincinnati, Ohio
Mike Nicodemus, CFSP, NFDA Vice President of Cremation Services, Brookfield, Wisconsin
Whether your funeral home uses a third-party crematory or you have your own, it's up to you to ensure that cremations are done in a legal, professional and ethical manner. The newly revised Due Diligence for Funeral Homes Utilizing Third-party Crematories document, jointly agreed to by NFDA, CANA and ICCFA earlier this year, is your best guide to protecting your firm and your clients. Gilligan and Nicodemus will explain the five reasons for diligence, identify cremation procedures posing risks and explain how your firm can develop both internal and external cremation due diligence procedures and documents. (1 CE hour)
Compliance Update: Becoming More Profitable Through Sustainable Business Practices
Carol Green, Law Offices of Carol Lynn Green, Bethesda, Maryland
Ensure EPA compliance and learn the first steps to sustainability that will set your firm apart. Implementing sustainable practices that protect human health and the environment is now an EPA focus for U.S. businesses. Green, NFDA's environmental counsel, will provide examples of sustainability practices for funeral homes and discuss the many benefits to your firm, your budget, staff and community. (1 CE hour)