Tag Archives: corporate

A look Inside SCI Houston #1-YourFuneralGuy

15 Oct
Comment on theWorld's Largest Funeral's Corporation Employee Culture

Comment on theWorld's Largest Funeral's Corporation Employee Culture

Here is a recent comment from a post on this blog. Interesting enough it gives a practical list of things the consumer can do to avoid the deceptions coming from Service Corporation International. Please note the commentator is calling the Corporate Culture at SCI Evil-not your funeral guy. Currently I have no direct knowledge of what goes on at SCI CORPORATE Headquarters In Houston. To be fair the person commenting here lost their job.

Funeral Industry|Funeral Blog by Your Funeral Guy.

New comment on your post #1741 “Five Grave Scandals in 2009|SCI-yourfuneralguy”

I recently lost my job with the corporate office of SCI in Houston, and I will testify that the corporate culture there is evil. If you are going to warn people to avoid SCI funeral homes, they need to know that these funeral homes have different names like “Smith and Sons Mortuary” because SCI buys up mom and pop businesses but leaves them with the orginal name.

People looking to avoid SCI locations should avoid their brand names: Dignity Memorial (as in “Smith and Sons Mortuary, a Dignity Memorial provider”), Advantage (for the low-cost side of the funeral business) and Del Angel (which is exists in markets with large Hispanic populations, to get the corner on them).  If you aren’t sure which locations in your area are owned by SCI, go to DignityMemorial.com and enter your zip code.  They will conveniently provide you with a list of funeral homes to avoid.

Your Funeral Guy: Corporate Funeral Homes-Use These Folks If You Must.

31 Dec

Generally I do not refer folks to a corporate funeral home. Sometimes however they are the only one in town. You can have a lower cost funeral at some corporate funeral homes. Choose this one first but only if your choices are limited.

Stewart Enterprises is the best choice. Presently I have no connection with Stewart Enterprises or SCI. The Funeral Industry as I have mentioned does not have a good reputation. Within the Funeral Industry SCI, Service Corporation International is known for it’s aggressive sales tactics. Please note. SCI and Stewart Enterprise Facilities are most often located near each other and are fierce competitors.

Here is my comments on Stewart Enterprises.

As a former employee of Stewart Enterprises I must say their focus was always on better service.

On the cemetery side there has been difficulties.I observed this first hand. However their tactics were never as brutal as SCI which I have witnessed.

In funeral arrangements their concern was for the family. Walking out of the arrangement conference I heard how did you help that family? Rather than How much did you sell?- the mantra of others (i.e. SCI) and companies I worked for.

Stewart has strict guidelines and standards for employees, and as an arranger I had access to family reviews of my own arrangement and service skills.

Yes they have good goals now. It appears that hiring a cremation specialist is a move towards a focus on giving great service on all types of services even those with less profit margin.

Lower cost funeral alternatives, a rising trend around the country are quickly being requested by the public. This continues to present itself in these difficult economic times.

Strategies for the days ahead appear to be well thought out. I need to mentioned  two consistent problems.

Problem #1 is preneed difficulties.  Please do not purchase a preneed policy especially from a funeral home. It appears that it will not take you to a lower cost funeral.  Being on the inside I saw instances of preneed fraud, which they skillfully dealt with and kept quiet and out of the press.

Problem #2 is executive and employee exchange with SCI. Focus often changed when these exchanges took place. Lower turnover will help this.

If they manage to handle more lower cost funeral deals, Stewart Enterprises will continue to survive and show growth in the recession.

I mention this so you can shop intelligently for a lower cost funeral. Be careful though Stewart Enterprises have a significant population of SCI people.

If you do not want to take my word on  SCI’s blame it on the customer attitude check out this snippet:

“”Was it that Stewart Enterprises, Inc. (NASDAQ:STEI)was too unreasonable in insisting that Service Corporation International(NYSE:SCI) accept all financing risk in the transaction, as SCI claims? Or was it the declining state of the credit market, as Stewart claims?

Clearly SCI blamed Their Customer Stewart Enterprise. This attitude  carries down to the funeral director level.

Check out an article on this subject now by Laura Cadden.

On the Flipside my experiences with SCI and Stewart Enterprises  led me to write the lower cost funeral book.

Insider's Tips to the Low Cost Less Stress Funeral

Rest in Peace: Insider’s Tips to the Low Cost Less Stress Funeral

Remember to come in under the average cost of a funeral($8000.00 USD+) you generally need to avoid corporate funeral homes.

Blog by Your Funeral Guy.

Your Funeral Guy:Funeral Cost (Cash)- Flashy Websites and Facilities

2 Jul

This a tale of two funeral homes and their funeral cost. Funeral Cost Cash is eaten up by flashy Websites and facilities.Yes Funeral cost cash is often taken over by marketing websites and fancy corporate like funeral facilities. Worse yet corporate funeral homes are often disguised as Family Funeral Homes. The major corporations SCI and others do this. It is essential to know who you are dealing with in keeping down funeral cost.

A model funeral home: Barton Family Funeral Service states its philosophy well in keeping down Funeral Cost.

“Barton Family Funeral Service is founded on the belief that there is a better way to deal with death than the expensive offerings of the corporate funeral industry. We urge a return to traditional values, beliefs, and cultural practices that are often compromised when traditional funerals cost too much. The growing trend toward personalized last rites is really just a return to the ways our ancestors faced the reality of death.”


By contrast this Funeral Home promotes it’s fancy facility and hides it’s prices behind a flash opener of it’s upscale facility.


This flash is designed to take your funeral cost cash. Worse yet from our family to yours is actually quite a chain of funeral homes with expensive costs.

Not to mention it is an IFDA Preneed Trust Funeral Home and NPS (national prearranged services) funeral home. Two Preneed Scandals that have rocked Illinois and the USA! Beware national prearranged services and the Illinois Funeral Directors Association

Flash always takes your funeral cost cash!

More information on lowering the average funeral cost can be found here:

Insider's Tips to the Low Cost Less Stress Funeral

Rest in Peace: Insider’s Tips to the Low Cost Less Stress Funeral by R Brian Burkhardt and Matt Bacak. #1 International Best Selling Author Jason Oman also gave thumbs up to this book. This book is published by Morgan James Publishing.

Your Funeral Guy, R Brian Burkhardt, Funeral Director, Author, Blogger, State of Illinois

The “Google Books Search” give a look inside the book.