making every client successful 
regardless of their definition of success

Success is very much a subjective word. It is not our goal to define success for our clients. As a trusted advisor, we ask focused questions that allow you to define your own success. We then provide you with the support and tools to be “successful.”

Funeral Home Owners  |  Advance Planners  |  Funeral Home/Cemetery Managers  |  Case Studies


"Our 144-year history in the greater Seattle area has been built on our ability to provide client families with premier service and [Cairn] has helped us develop and operate an advance planning program that builds on this legacy of service. I would not want to manage my business without their leadership and support."

Cameron A. Smock
Bonney-Watson Funeral Homes
Washington Memorial Park

Advance Planners

“Working with Cairn has helped me to be more productive and effective. The CRM allows me to keep track of all the details to support families. I learn so much from everyone on the team. I am especially grateful to Kevin, Chris and Delana. They help me be the best I can be.”

Jamie Sarche
Advance Planning Specialist
Feldman Mortuary

"The past five years has seen remarkable growth in Cemetery and Funeral pre-planning, despite obstacles from both inside and outside forces. With guidance from [Cairn] and Chris’ steady hand we have a pre-need program that has met all of our goals. Chris has not just been a resource for our sales department but a real partner. He has lived up to the name of his organization in every aspect of the cemetery and funeral profession. Chris’ knowledge of our profession goes beyond the sales department because he understands that for a sales department to thrive many other elements must be in place. Chris is never too busy to return a call or to drive hundreds of miles to assist in training for even one new Advance Planner. You can put your trust in [Cairn]. We did and the results have been amazing."

Mike Grace
Advance Planning Specialist
Einan’s Funeral Home
Sunset Memorial Gardens

"The staff at [Cairn] is extremely supportive and always a phone call away. I am always able to have issues resolved and/or questions answered immediately... even on a Saturday when I'm with a family helping them Pre-need. I must mention that [Cairn's] on-going effective training program is priceless."

Stefanie V. Fehr
Advance Planning Specialist

Funeral Home/Cemetery Managers

“As the sales manager of a large funeral service organization, with seven cemeteries and 4 funeral and cremation establishments, my responsibilities can be overwhelming. My most demanding task is to find new advance planners and then training them. Cairn Partners has been a great support and have helped to lighten that burden with their recruiting, hiring, and training efforts and expertise. I would highly recommend Cairn Partners to any organization who is trying to grow and improve their sales team.”

Billie Hoerner
Sales Manager
Fairmount Holdings, Inc.

"Our Advance Planning Program continues to gain momentum year after year due to the assistance of [Cairn]. Their leadership, expertise and support allows our firm to remain successful year after year. Chris and all of the [Cairn] associates are readily available to answer questions and help lead our team in a successful direction. The service we receive from [Cairn] is the model all vendors should follow."

Stephen Mulder
Sales Manager
Einan’s Funeral Home
Sunset Gardens

"We knew we needed to re-build our advance planning department but lacked the time and expertise to do so. Chris Rose with [Cairn] has handled every aspect from hiring a professional team, training and support, direct mail programs, reporting and Continuing Care support. Chris is readily available to discuss ideas and concerns and offer support and advice, and always in the most professional manner. Since partnering with [Cairn] in late 2010, our production has increased consistently."

Kathy Birdwell
Shaw & Sons Funeral Directors

case studies

A large funeral home and cemetery combination had experienced decreasing pre-need funeral sales over a three-year period. Through Cairn's assessment process, it was clear that the business model and marketing strategies of the firm were not in alignment with their sales goals. Upon the sales manager tendering her resignation, Cairn went to work on reviewing the existing management structure, commission structure as well as the appropriate use of Advance Planning products, sales goals, and personnel. Cairn identified and assisted in obtaining a new Sales Manager under an entirely new compensation structure that encouraged and rewarded positive growth. In addition, Cairn was instrumental in finding and hiring several additional Family Service Directors who are all integral players in the existing Family Service Team. Within the first two years, this firm realized an incremental increase in sales that exceeded 300%. Today, this firm has a healthy Advance Planning Department that is built on a sound business plan and strategic marketing.

A mid-sized funeral home had a relatively passive program with part-time Advanced Planners who were producing less than optimal results. Cairn identified the obstacles with the program and began working with the owner to develop lead programs and marketing tools as a platform on which to build a true Advance Planning Program. After an unsuccessful span of time with a family friend as head of the Advance Planning Team, Cairn brought in an experienced counselor with proven abilities to work with families and assist them with their Advance Planning needs. 

Within a year, the firm’s pre-need Funeral sales doubled and after hiring and training a Continuing Care Specialist, sales tripled from the original baseline sales. Families are being served as they have never been served before. This firm is now in the perfect position to gain market share and defend against competitors.

A small firm recently purchased by a new owner identified that the future viability of the firm relied on a high level of service and value to their clientele as well as an outreach and educational component through Advance Planning. The owner asked for assistance from Cairn. The firm had limited resources and was not able to hire a full-time Advance Planner. Cairn recruited and placed the right counselor who worked 3 days per week at the firm and focused on continuing care, working the files and referrals from the walk-in traffic. The firm’s goals were to defend against competitors with limited resources. Cairn was able to provide the right fit to reach this firm’s goals. Future plans for this firm include group seminar programs and a Direct Mail program.