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The Straw That Broke The Camels Back

Here at Udens we often talk about quality of service and are continuously working on self improvement and development within our own company so that we can provide families with the very best care and attention that they and their loved ones deserve. That includes setting and maintaining the highest standards of dress, conduct, cleanliness and best practice standards.

I’m not insinuating that we are perfect by any means or indeed that we never make mistakes. But what I can guarantee is that we try our very best, strive to be better every day and learn plenty of lessons along the way.

Recent events have spurred me to speak my mind on this subject
which I feel is fundamental to our profession. Those that know me will understand my passion and I earnestly believe that every family has the right to expect the best treatment from whichever company they entrust with the care of their loved one.

I regularly hold my tongue when in meetings with other funeral directors and try to ignore the blatant failings of those companies who purport to provide a comparable

Is it too much to expect that funeral teams should be smart in appearance, clean and well groomed, with pressed uniform and polished shoes?

Am I asking too much that the people who care for a loved one are not covered in
Inappropriate tattoos or piercings, whose hair is unkempt and quite frankly isn’t fit for our profession or whose clothes actually fit them? I for one would never permit such failings within our own team.

Why therefore other, often national companies, allow and accept it amongst their employees is something that makes me feel extremely sad, and I hate to say but a little angry too.. My avowed object in life is to ensure that every funeral, no matter who undertakes such duty is conducted with respect and dignity. I believe this can only be achieved by imposing and enforcing the highest standards upon those who deliver such service. At this stage I do not intend to “name names”. Yet these same companies continue to charge a premium price for what I believe to be a mediocre service. I believe that families are being let down by the greed of such companies who place profit above customer service. You may wonder why I bother venting my frustration when such poor service by others only reflects favourably upon our company? It is because I care. I care about the reputation of our profession and the overriding desire to ensure every bereaved family receives the service to which they are entitled. You may have read this and thought, is this a blog or just a rant? I guess it is a rant but I hope that it will start a conversation and I welcome the views of other funeral directors or families on their own experiences and indeed practices.

Matthew Uden,
Aka Mr. angry of Eltham

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