Chris Cruger

March 28, 2024

Plan + Execution = Success

In the January issue of The Director, I wrote about the importance of planning, awareness and accountability as the bedrock of your business success in 2024. Having a plan is the first critical step. Next, and most important, is execution – putting a predetermined course (your plan) into action. It means carrying out tasks, activities and steps outlined in your plan to achieve your goal(s). If you don’t do those things, your plan will likely fail. In other words, a well-crafted plan is just the beginning. Its true power lies in the commitment and discipline necessary to make it happen. Execution marks the real difference between success and failure. Clearly Defined Roles The key starting point is laying out clearly defined goals about what you want to achieve. Make sure they are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound, i.e., SMART […]
January 30, 2024

Know Thy Business

Building your success on awareness and a plan. As we begin 2024, I am humbled to be a part of this business and finance column going forward. We have some big shoes to fill after the wisdom Dan Isard has brought to this column for decades. My focus is going to be on planning, awareness and accountability in your business. I want to challenge you to make 2024 the best year it can be and then grow from there. I believe that awareness, or understanding, is a core principle in business success. Awareness of yourself, your business and your community is what charts the path forward in these turbulent times. The more you understand your present situation, the better prepared you will be to adapt going forward. A key part of awareness is knowing where we are today and where […]
December 28, 2023

End-of-Life Celebrations for Your Furry Companion

Serving Pet Families Can Be a Worthwhile Proposition Written by Chris Cruger with Alice Adams My friend, Andra, called to tell me her beloved Schatzki, a beautiful 12-year-old German Shepherd, was in hospice, her voice choking with emotion. “I’ll call you as things move along,” she promised. “I cry every time I say ‘hospice,’” she confessed before ending the call. A few days later, Schatzki succumbed in Andra’s arms as the vet administered the euthanizing injection. Her vet was partnered with a local funeral home offering end-of-life services for pets. Two uniformed and neatly groomed attendants waited in a removal vehicle until Andra had said her tearful goodbye. While the vet summoned the waiting attendants, a friend led the sobbing woman out of the room for a glass of wine. While Schatzki was in hospice, Andra made arrangements with the […]
November 28, 2023

Funeral Service at the Crossroads Part Three

Part 3 of 3 Written by Chris Cruger with Alice Adams Will you succeed in your profession’s new era? Then consider transitioning to transparency a matter of survival. Remember “The Emperor’s New Clothes”? That folktale may have been your first experience with the word “transparent.” As the story goes, the emperor was duped by a tailor, and the new clothes he had ordered were not as they should be. As he marched through the city, his subjects were afraid to tell the emperor that his clothing was transparent – clear, see-through – and that he was, in fact, totally naked! Transparency in business is similar (without the nudity). Transparent businesses publicly share information about their company – information traditionally kept private or revealed only in-house. Transparency today is essential. It is about being real and often carries different meanings from […]
October 25, 2023

Funeral Service at the Crossroads Part Two

Part 2 of 3 Written by Chris Cruger with Alice Adams Will you succeed in your profession’s new era? If so, the massive knowledge gap between consumers and funeral service needs immediate attention. At the end of a recent celebration of life for a popular teacher, high school tennis coach and longtime community volunteer, many commented to her husband on the unique experience. “I didn’t know you could have a catered meal at a funeral home.” “I loved the jazz trio during lunch.” “I wish I could have had a celebration like this for my mother.” “I’m really glad I came.” “I hope my kids do something like this for me when my time comes.” “Everything that happened today– from her favorite food to the music to the stories from former players, family members and friends, and the displays of […]
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