Honing Your Passions and Moving Forward in Your Profession

This year, the International Order of the Golden Rule (OGR) is focusing its podcast series on “The Changing Consumer,” — exploring consumer needs in deathcare and how they have shifted in recent years. How are consumers finding and choosing their funeral homes? What services are they looking for? Which aspects of the funeral are most important to them? The 2023 season investigates questions such as these to provide insight into modern consumers. 

In the March 23 episode, host Gregory McClary, owner of Chapel of the Chimes in Westland, Michigan, spoke to Wally Hooker, owner of Family & Friends Funeral Home in Wingate, Indiana. Hooker serves as the president of the Indiana Funeral Directors Association and has experience public speaking for various groups of funeral leaders. 

A wider theme of the interview is passion for the funeral profession. Hooker talks about the lengths about embalming, which is one of his specialties in his funeral business. He discusses the value of embalming as a service and why he has such a passion for it. 

"If we can take [the] deceased and make them [look] whole again, or maybe even better than they were in the dying process, it gives the family something to remember better than what they saw in the nursing home or hospital," Hooker said. 

Hooker also shares advice he has learned in his career throughout the interview. He believes that in addition to bringing a passionate energy to the families you serve, you must always put their needs and wishes first. 

"My advice is to listen more than you talk," Hooker said. "Go in there as a passionate, empathetic funeral director and get to know these families before you get into the mechanics of arranging a service. If you get down on their level and listen to what their needs are, or what they personally feel like they need, they're gonna tell you exactly what they'd like to have." 

In the full episode, McCall and Hooker also share advice for new funeral professionals just getting started, discuss changes in the profession over the years and brainstorm ideas for how to improve communication between independent funeral directors. 

To listen to the full episode with Wally Hooker, click here. The full season of The Changing Consumer is also available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and in the OGR Learning Library. For more information about the OGR Podcast Series or to revisit previous seasons of the podcast, visit the OGR podcast page 

This episode of The Changing Consumer was presented by the Dodge Company. An OGR endorsed supplier, Dodge provides innovative products and services that provide opportunities for its customers to excel. Visit their website here:  https://www.dodgeco.com/. 

Share this post:

Comments on "Honing Your Passions and Moving Forward in Your Profession"

Comments 0-5 of 0

Please login to comment