Working at a funeral home – Walk ins, revisited
I have written about walk ins before and I have bitched about them several times in many posts but I was asked to post about them again.
If someone passes away and you are going to be making the funeral arrangements, DO NOT just show up to the funeral home! CALL first! This is a MUST! Funeral homes are NOT open 24/7 and we are not just sitting around waiting for customers to ‘show up’!
If you just show up without calling and scheduling an appointment you may be a little ticked when you get there and no one is available to help you. We will also be ticked that you just showed up unannounced because if the Director is not there and we have to explain to you that no one is available to sit with you we may lose you as a customer. We DO NOT want you to not come back! However, we may not have a choice. We are also going to be ticked that you did ‘just show up unannounced’!
Reasons for a Director not being at the funeral home when you ‘show up or walk in’ may be:
He/She is on a funeral with another family …. Duuuhhhhh
He/She is with another family making arrangements because they had an appointment and if you would have called you would have known that “now” is not a good time!
He/She may be out of the office for several other reasons; getting a death certificate signed, filing a death certificate, making a removal, meeting at another location with another family, or we are actually in the middle of a funeral service at the funeral home (which the Director is there but again, if you had called you would have known that “now” is not a good time!)
He/She may be out to lunch (yes, we eat lunch too!)
He/She may have had something personal scheduled and is out of the office (we have lives! we have children! families of our own and we also go to the doctors, and have other personal appointments that sometimes need to be done during the day!)
He/She may be in a meeting either at the funeral home or at another location.
He/She may be embalming .
So you see, there are several reasons. Most often the person or families that just show up are probably tired and upset and thought that “oh, I will just go up to the funeral home now or I will just run up to the funeral home in an hour or so and make the arrangements.” So, when you do arrive and I or another staff member says to you “I’m sorry but the Director is not here right now, did you have an appointment with him/her because they did not mention that they had any arrangements at this time….?” Guess what….. your going to be irritated! Your then going to probably roll your eyes and act is if “we” somehow put YOU out! Somehow, we, the funeral home, has purposely done this to you. You going to tell me that you did not have an appointment and you did not know you needed one! but your so and so just died and you need to get these arrangements made because people want to know when the visitation is going to be and the funeral and you have so much to do!!! Well….SO DO WE! We really do not want to start out our relationship with you on the wrong foot….we want you to use our funeral home. We want you to be happy with our services, but you make it difficult when you cannot stop for one second to realize that the world has not stopped because someone has died. This may sound very insensitive to many and I apologize if I sound so rash….but it is the truth. Death is inconvenient. I have missed many birthday parties. Have had to leave parties and holiday gatherings early. Missed MY appointments because someone has passed away and I need to be at the funeral home! This is my job tho and I knew this going in! So, we sacrifice our lives, our families, our needs to tend to yours! We only ask that you have some ounce of consideration! And if after all of this you still decide that you are still going to walk in to a funeral home with out having an appointment, don’t do it at 5:00 p.m!! Or before 9:00 a.m. If you see a parking lot full of cars and a big black vehicle called a HEARSE in front of all the cars…..do NOT think that you are going to walk in that funeral home and someone be able to help you right then! I’m sure some funeral homes may have more than one Director on staff at all times, but many do not! I find it extremely odd that many people will show up to a funeral home at 5am, 6am, 7am or 8pm, 9pm and come to the door and ring the bell and when no one answers they call and get the answering service or the Director if they are answering the phones and say “I am at the door ringing the bell and no one is answering!” I mean really? Funeral Directors do not typically live at the funeral home! Not these days! We have regular business hours! And if the Director did live at the funeral home, why would you think it is ok to show up so early or late and wake him/her up? Do you think they don’t sleep?
So…I could go on and on and on and one and on……….but I won’t, not right now anyway.
I am going to add my Tip of the Day to this post as well, it is short and sweet.
Tip of the Day for February 16, 2012
Do NOT show up to your loved ones funeral with a sweatshirt/hoodie/t-shirt that reads “I don’t do fat chicks” !!! Who the hell let you leave your house with that on to come to a funeral? You and your family should be ashamed of you! And I don’t want to hear “maybe that’s all they have to wear” BULLSHIT!