Russ Allison has forwarded the Connecting Directors e-news letter, which suggests funeral directors have their head in the sand, much like themusic industry did before the internet stole the show (alledgedly):
"A few months ago I attended a funeral association conference in the mid-west. Surrounded by well-dressed gentleman (men. yes men, almost all men) hawking coffins, sharing tips on administering chemical and embalming fluids, and one-upping each other with “you wouldn’t believe it” stories (remind me to tell you the one about the deceased’s skin slipping off while using a body scoop), I considered the very real possibility that I’d been touched by insanity."
The author then dissects the funeral directing industry, picking up on the malaise that results when family businesses get passed down the line of generations:
"Gentrification is also hammering the industry, making the land a funeral home sits on more valuable than the revenue generated by the business. Cost of goods aren’t faring much better, as Wal-mart offers payment terms, and prices that completely destroy funeral home margins (again). Then there’s the “4th generation” problem. Funeral homes are often handed down generation to generation — but you try handing your funeral home to your gen-x or millennial offspring."
The similarities between the USA and Australian industry does not surprise, of course.
I don't agree with some of the assessments and conclusions relating to the music industry, but on the whole it's a valid comparison.