Top 5 Professional Development Courses for Funeral Directors

By Ann Heinz, JD, CDEI
Sep 21, 2021
Top 5 Professional Development Courses for Funeral Directors

A funeral directors’ duties once consisted of only a few tasks (many, many years ago). However, current funeral directors and professionals are much more than that — they are managers, legal officers, CEOs, CFOs, and COOs — and many are often their own customer service reps, answering their own phones, and handling their clients’ needs from beginning to end. Because their duties have expanded, so has the need for professional development.

Below are five continuing education courses every funeral professional needs as part of their funeral director professional development. Which course do you think sounds the most interesting?

1. Funeral Operations During a Pandemic

COVID-19 has significantly impacted the funeral business. While our industry was founded on celebrating life, eulogizing, and fellowshipping in very personal and physical ways, we have now been forced to find new ways to come together.

Our new funeral CE course, Funeral Operations During a Pandemic, explores how the funeral industry has adapted to the COVID-19 crisis, the protocols that have been adopted to keep workers and the public safe, and the guidance to funeral professionals from OSHA, CDC, and WHO. The course also discusses why funeral homes must develop crisis management plans and examines why the pandemic will likely create lasting changes to both personal and societal behavior.

2. Funeral Personalization and Family Engagement

It has been increasingly common for individuals to pre-plan their funerals and put their end-of-life wishes on paper. This way, surviving family and friends know exactly how to celebrate their loved one’s life. Many people are also now shying away from traditional funerals. Instead, they are looking for alternative ways to personalize their or their loved one’s memorial.

The purpose of the course Funeral Personalization and Family Engagement is to help funeral directors create an environment that encourages families to discuss their thoughts and wishes about their funerals before the time comes. Because these wishes can be written and ideas shared, the at-need arrangements can truly reflect the unique life of a loved one.

The course also discusses the growing trend of personalized funeral services and how, by engaging families in the arrangement process, funeral directors can help families give their beloved family member one last gift and final showing of their love and affection.

The world of death care is changing. The introduction of new disposition methods, the rise of death discussion movements, and the allure of eco-friendly funerals are just a few of the trends that are affecting the funeral industry. How can funeral professionals navigate these dramatic changes and thrive in the process?

Our new course Death Care Trends That Are Changing Tradition is designed to help funeral professionals understand what is changing in the online and face-to-face world of death care, the trends that feed these changes, and steps they can take to meet the needs of their changing customer base.

4. Public Speaking for Funeral Directors

Funeral directors need to speak in public all the time. Whether explaining the services they offer, meeting with the family of the deceased, speaking at a memorial service, or training staff, public speaking is part of the job. Public speaking is also a skill that can be learned and that improves with practice.

To help with this important skill, we are pleased to offer the course Public Speaking for Funeral Directors. Whether you’re a seasoned public speaker or become fearful at the very idea, this course provides important information on how to improve your communication skills and overcome any fears of public speaking. The course also examines how to craft an appropriate and comforting funeral speech and handle difficult conversations with bereaved family members.

5. Funeral Customs with Military Honors

Funeral professionals will undoubtedly be asked at various times in their careers to arrange military funeral honors for a veteran. It is important for funeral professionals to keep the feeling of deep gratitude as the motivating force for all that you do when working with military families. While the rendering of military funeral honors for an eligible veteran, free of charge, is mandated by law, it is an honor and a privilege for you to be asked to assist in helping such a ceremony take place.

In our course Funeral Customs with Military Honors, funeral directors will learn how to organize, plan, and conduct a military funeral. It also addresses important topics, including:

  • military funeral honors law
  • the proper positioning of military pallbearers, color guard, and clergy during a military service
  • flag etiquette and how to correctly display a U.S. military burial flag
  • how much the V.A. will reimburse for burial expenses
  • how headstones and markers for a member of the military should be inscribed
  • and more!

Professional Development for Funeral Professionals

The best way for funeral professionals to invest in their professional development is through continuing education. WebCE offers the largest selection of state-specific funeral CE courses, all at an affordable price.

To order these continuing education courses and more, visit the Funeral CE Catalog or call our customer service representatives at 877-488-9308.

Funeral CE Catalog