I am continuing a blog I wrote earlier this week on the subject matter of stepping out from a comfort zone and into a space where innovation is created. The intent of the written thoughts are to generate discussion about others that have “stepped out” in the funeral industry to innovate, and explore the results of their efforts. There has been good feedback about this topic and I solicit your thoughts.
Refreshing the point, I am blessed to travel extensively and meet many funeral industry professionals, both licensed and not. A definition of innovate is “improve something with a new idea or procedure, or produce a product using a new or better way.” This actually defines G2 Funeral Group www.g2funeralgroup.com and their truly innovative brand of funeral service utilizing a proprietary operating platform.
G2 Funeral Group developed, owns and manages the Family Choice Funerals & Cremations brand of funeral homes www.familychoicefunerals.com . What’s unique about Family Choice is the brand was created from scratch utilizing Lean/Six Sigma principles for every aspect of its operations, named TouchPoints. Family Choice opened its first location January 2010 in Roanoke Virginia and it’s second in Virginia Beach May of 2010. The distance between the two locations is 4 hours…purposely to prove the TouchPoints operating platform. Serving over 280 families a year, the brand has gained consumer acceptance, recognition and loyalty in a very short time period.
Unequivocally, one of the best franchises in the United States is Chic-Fil-A. Their operating platform, training and culture, the service and product is the same from each location…always ending with “my pleasure.” So why do funeral homes with multiple locations under the same name/brand have such operational differences from each location? If a large firm has multiple funeral directors, why is there such a disparity of outcome in arrangements?
G2 has perfected the process with TouchPoints by each location functioning operationally the same making management simpler, training as a daily part of the culture, the proprietary arrangements provide that every family receives the same information, and that the entire process can be duplicated…anywhere. The Family Choice brand is now working with funeral homes that want to expand in their own or other markets in a quasi “franchise” type operational agreement, with the first new location opening in early 2014.