Reflecting on the last six months

October 27, 2016   //   1 Comment

I find myself approaching 7 months as your National President. Last month I celebrated (a loose term) my 50th birthday and both those 7 months and 50 years seem to have flown by.  There have been very many pleasurable tasks. I have visited some beautiful parts of the UK for the first time and met some very interesting and committed people. Whilst travelling by car, train and plane, I’ve had plenty of time to reflect, not only on the week’s events, but on the events of my term in office and indeed, my life so far.

Looking back, it’s remarkable how things often seem to happen for a reason, and not necessarily because we planned it that way. Other people’s actions have certainly dictated the paths my life has followed, both personally and in my working life. Often there has been more than one path in front of me, but I have always had the choice as to which I should follow. And the one thing my parents always instilled in me was the importance of making decisions for the right reason, be that for my sake or for the sake of others important to me. It goes without saying, that the most important people in my life are my family, but I extend that now to the family of SAIF, established to support each other and together we can achieve great things. Sometimes the path to follow is an easy decision to make, while at other times it can be an extremely difficult choice.

There are many decisions which we make in our daily lives as Funeral Directors which we make instinctively. We also make decisions for our staff and the families we deal with. In all these circumstances, I have no doubt that our decisions are based on the well-being of all those involved.

I can see a number of situations heading our way, which will cause many of us to question which path to follow, both for the good of ourselves, our businesses, and perhaps most important of all, our clients! There is an ever increasing number of outside sources trying to influence the decisions we make (more often than not for their own sake), and subsequently the path, not only you, but your business takes. I put it to you that you should never take any decisions lightly. And just because someone tells you that you need to act in a certain way, doesn’t mean that you have to do as they say. As my mother always said to me, “If someone told you to put your head in the fire, would you?” Always remember that nobody knows what is right for you and your business better than you!

I suggest to every member of SAIF that you identify the path you want to take, stick to your morals, and pursue greatness within our esteemed profession. If we allow outside influences to affect the way we act and dictate to us the path we should follow, I see the role of the Funeral Director as being a diminishing role in society. We are a respected group of people, who have high morals, and who really care about what we do and how we go about doing it. I wonder how many other professions can make such a statement.  Why would we ever change that!


Paul Allcock

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