John McQueen

July 24, 2022


How can you make a positive difference in your community as society trends toward a meaningless tomorrow filled with simple cremation? Most scientists and archaeologists agree that Homosapiens, or modern humans, came into existence between 200,000 and 300,000 years ago. The first known communities, however, did not exist until around 14,000 years ago. But it’s the 9,500-year old Neolithic settlement known as Catalhoyuk, located in south-central Turkey, where nearly 8,000 people gathered, that may hold the key to the rise in major communities. Prior to the discovery of Catalhoyuk, humans were mostly known as nomadic people, hunters and gathers wandering in search of food. Although still up for some debate, archaeologists believe these early settlers came together through shared spirituality and artistic expression, giving way to shared farming and other social customs. There is no doubt that the Neolithic Revolution […]
May 30, 2022

Putting the Value Back in Funeral Service

Your clients will thank you In the 1609 William Shakespeare play, hamlet, the main character is torn between life and death. His famous line, “To be or not to be, that is the question,” is most appropriate when discussing Celebration of Life ceremonies. And although the question is different, the conundrum remains the same: Do families want a celebration of life or not? I’m here to tell you that the answer is yes, but will it be held with you, the funeral professional, is the real question. As identified in The Foresight Companies’ 2021 Consumer Survey, 63% percent of consumers feel a big celebration is important in honoring the life of the deceased. In fact, this number has increased in the post-pandemic world in which we now live. On the surface, that number looks to be good news for the […]
November 23, 2021

No Slick Salespeople Allowed!

Purpose, Plan, Passion & Persistence Lead to Pre-Need Marketing Success Throughout my 35-plus years of working in the family funeral business, I have written hundreds of pre-need contracts. I have also actively managed a multitude of sales counselors and sales managers. To grow our department, I had the opportunity to work with some of the most talented pre-need consultants in the industry, such as Gary O’Sullivan, Quinn Eagan, Rob Meredith, and others. During my funeral tenure, I funded our program with trust accounts and insurance policies, partnering with industry leaders such as Precoa and Funeral Services Inc. So why do I share all of this with you? Because I’ve tried to take the best that all of them had to offer, and now, I want to share what I believe is key to success in pre-need and beyond. I call […]
July 20, 2021

Survey Says…Cremation is Still a “Burning” Desire

How do you ignite a conversation in a room full of funeral directors? Toss in the word “cremation.” It will spark conversation—some good, some bad. But in all cases, you will witness myriad emotions. It may be hard to believe that some funeral professionals are still adamantly opposed to cremation. Rather than embracing the opportunities that can be found in cremation, they are still fighting for a return to the way things were “in the good old days.” For most of us, we recognize those days are gone, and it is time to embrace ways to create opportunities with cremation families. According to the recent Performance TrackerTM Analysis: 2020 COVID-19 Impact Report, 55% of all cases in 2019 resulted in cremation. During the recent COVID pandemic, our industry saw a 5%–10% increase in cremation disposition cases for 2020. Although cremation […]
June 23, 2021

A Beacon of Hope

Position your firm like Lady Liberty and earn the trust of your community. The year was 1876 and America was celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence when the French government presented the United States with a gift to honor the celebration. The colossal neoclassical sculpture known as Liberty Enlightening the World (the Statue of Liberty) was created by French sculptor Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi, who crafted it from sheets of hammered copper. Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, who designed and constructed the Eiffel Tower, created the steel framework that became her endoskeleton. This gift of friendship between two nations was dedicated October 28, 1886 and became known fondly as Lady Liberty. It would become a beacon of hope for millions of immigrants arriving in America via Ellis Island. She also became the epitome of the American dream, one based on the […]
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