Jewelry is a high-end product that has an emotional connection to consumers. As a jewelry professional, you need to be sure that connection is protected and never taken for granted. That’s why responsible business practices are so critical to your business.
David Peters, resident education and management expert for Jewelers of America, notes that being ethical is a fundamental part of being a jewelry professional. Peters says retail jewelry professionals should “think like a customer” on a day-to-day basis to stay ethical.Consider the following questions to help you thrive with responsible business practices:
- What does the customer want to know?
As a jewelry professional, are you leaving out any information that will help the consumer make an informed buying decision or omitting anything that you are not only morally, but legally, obligated to include?
- What does the customer need to know?
If you omit critical information -- like treatment information that requires special care and cleaning -- you are breaking the law and doing a disservice to the customer. You and your staff should learn how to communicate honestly and enthusiastically about treatments, because treatments are a good thing! They enhance a gem's beauty and provide more variety in gemstone price points for customers.
- How would you feel if you were lied to?
Honesty is an integral part of the selling process. If you’re dishonest with a customer, you not only forfeit that relationship, you take a huge risk with your reputation.
- What actions would you take if you were deceived?
In today’s instant-information age, an ethical blunder can travel faster than the speed of light.
- How would your opinions of the salesperson and store change, if you were deceived?
While in some cases it is possible to repair the damage, it is more likely that you wouldn’t return to that store and you’d tell your friends not to shop there as well.
Take The Tip:
- At Jewelers of America's website, you can learn how to maintain consumer trust in the Responsible Business Practices sections for retailers and suppliers . JA members have unlimited access to various tools including talking points, sample letters, educational materials and more.
- Need help educating yourself and training your staff on important responsible business practice issues? Order Jewelers of America's Counter Intelligence, a self-study, multimedia training program that specializes in helping sales associates communicate issues that could negatively affect consumer confidence if handled improperly. Click here for more information.