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Manager's To Do

Calendar: April 2015

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Thanks to Tax Day at the heart of April, the month has become home to a series of money-management dates including National Financial Literacy Month, Financial awareness month and 1 cent day. But for all the advice thrown our way, when it comes to money, the vast majority of us continue to be our own worst enemies. We don’t open 401(k) plans, we incur fees because we “forget” to pay our bills on time, we run credit card balances … and then there are all those less-than-prudent business decisions we make. If you don’t have a CPA who specializes in small business or another neutral finance pro guiding your decisions, book a consultation today.

This article originally appeared in the March 2015 edition of INSTORE.

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Otto Von Bismarck, credited with uniting Germany, introducing Europe’s first social welfare program, and the following quote, “Only a fool learns from his own mistakes; the wise man learns from the mistakes of others,” was born on this day in 1815. Mark the 200th anniversary of Otto Von Bismarck’s birth (and April Fool’s Day) by re-reading our July 2014 feature, Lessons Learned (instr.us/3151).

UPCOMING EVENTS

April 18-20 Smart Jewelry Show, Chicago, IL

April 22-25 AGS Conclave, New Orleans, LA

April 25-27 JIS Show, Miami, FL

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April 27-28 IWJG Show, Brooklyn, NY

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Ann Landers knew a thing or two about feuds — she didn’t talk to her twin sister, (Dear) Abby, for years. It may have been why she was such an advocate of Reconciliation Day. While grudges, feuds and recalled slights can occasionally be good motivators, they mostly just consume time and energy. Today, think of a relationship (commercial or personal) that soured, and write a note to that person saying you’d like to bury the hatchet, or just wish them the best. Even if it doesn’t work out, it’s an issue you won’t waste any more time stewing over.

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The 155th anniversary of Rene Lalique’s birth represents a terrific opportunity to educate your customers about art nouveau jewelry, which has enjoyed a nice revival in the last few years. Maybe bring in an arty glassmaker for a trunk show.

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National Equal Pay Day symbolizes how far into 2015 women must work to earn what men earned in 2014. Invite your women customers to come in to commiserate and reward themselves fairly for their hard work, because broadly speaking, society is not in much of a hurry to do it.

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The inquiry, “Would you like fries with that?” earns McDonald’s millions of dollars a year. There’s much to learn about the art of upselling from the world’s biggest burger chain, which opened its first branch in Des Plaines, IL, on this day in 1955. The most important is: Don’t suggest add-ons just for the sake of profit or getting rid of unwanted inventory. Customers will see right through you. Instead, determine which products go well together because of style or price point (don’t go higher than 25 percent for the second item), and have your selling points prepared. If you can show the value in your fries, your clients will see it too.

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Former Mayor Richard J. Daley called Chicago “the city that works.” We’d like you to think of working smart when you think of the Windy City. As with previous SMART Shows, the 2015 event will provide lots of education (the sessions begin today), peer-group activities, and fun competitions. And let’s not forget a carefully edited vendor list to match your buying needs. Start clearing your cases now.

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What you may not know about Paul Revere is that he was one of you: a silversmith and engraver. Mark the 240th anniversary of Paul Revere’s ride into the history books with a “mid-night” sale. Hang a lantern above your door, and stay open late with some extra special offers.

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So you’re no Joe Cocker. Don’t let that stop you. The organizers of National Karaoke Week claim the benefits of singing along to synthetic tunes in public are increased self-esteem, stress release and when done with the staff, improved bonding through shared experience.


S T O R E    A N N I V E R S A R I E S

115 Years: Sorg Jewelers

Goshen and Elkhart, IN

Sorg Jewelers’ 115-year history is a point of pride for its third- and fourth-generation owners but the family has also been careful not to live in the past, notes VP Darin Sorg. While outside, 16-foot art-deco neon signs hint at an elegant past, the business has continued to evolve, most recently upgrading its location in Downtown Goshen, IL, and relocating a second store to a more vibrant part of nearby Elkhart. The family credits the business’s longevity to a simple formula that combines expertise, value and customer trust.


B I R T H S T O N E S

Diamond

There is a rational case to be made for eschewing diamonds, but it just melts when exposed to the Hard One’s bright, shining charm. It’s been the same way since they first washed up on Indian river banks more than 2,500 years ago. The word diamond derives its name from the Greek adamas, meaning unconquerable and indestructible, like a marriage that lasts into its 60th year.

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Wilkerson Testimonials

Wilkerson Helped This Jeweler to Navigate His Retirement Sale Despite a Pandemic

Hosting a going-out-of-business sale when the coronavirus pandemic hit wasn’t a part of Bob Smith’s game plan for his retirement. Smith, the owner of E.M. Smith Jewelers in Chillicothe, Ohio, says the governor closed the state mid-way through. But Smith chose Wilkerson, and Wilkerson handled it like a champ, says Smith. And when it was time for the state to reopen, the sale continued like nothing had ever happened. “I’d recommend Wilkerson,” he says. “They do business the way we do business.”

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