Factors affecting growth of small emerging funeral parlours in South Africa.
MetadataShow full item record
While the understanding of the small business sector in general is important to devise strategies for growth of the sector in South Africa, the evidence about the funeral parlour industry is particularly scarce. The aim of this study was to explore and examine factors that affect the growth of small emerging funeral parlours in South Africa. This was a qualitative study using an interpretive approach. Individual and focus group discussions were key in providing rich information. The sample group included directors or owners of small to medium funeral businesses from four selected provinces in South Africa. The findings from this study have shown a number of internal and external factors that contribute to the growth stagnation of small emerging funeral parlours in South Africa. The internal factors included limited or lack of managerial, marketing and financial skills. In addition, lack of financial support makes it difficult for small emerging funeral businesses to grow. Mistrust of small emerging funeral parlours by the communities was also among the contributing factors to the growth stagnation of small funeral businesses. With respect to external factors, it was evident that government does not recognise funeral parlours the same as any other small business, thus making it difficult for small funeral businesses to benefit from any assistance from the government. In line with the above findings, there is a need for small emerging funeral parlours to reflect on ways through which skills in management and financial and marketing skills can be acquired. In addition, the quest to build credibility in communities where these funeral parlours operate is of paramount importance if these businesses are to succeed. Furthermore, it is important that more workshops be carried out in order to equip funeral parlours owners with a deeper knowledge of the regulations that govern small businesses and funeral businesses in particular. While it appears to be a challenge for small businesses to register due to the higher costs involved, it is important for funeral parlour associations together with the government structure concerned to find way through which this challenge can be resolved. There is also a need for government structures to come up with a clear legislative framework that can assist small emerging funeral parlours in South Africa.