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Big Survey

Family Jewelers Report That Customers Often Jump to Conclusions About Who Is Related and How

Awkward situations often ensue.



HUNDREDS RESPONDED TO our Big Survey question: “If you work with any family members, please tell us the funniest or strangest thing that’s ever happened, either between you or that you both (or all) experienced?” Jewelers report that they experience every possible form of mistaken identity and misunderstandings about just who is related to whom and how. Here is a sample of those awkward situations and memorable moments:

  • My dad was swearing like crazy in his office, adjacent to the bridal section. I, with a straight face, apologized to the customer for his Tourette’s syndrome. Boy did I get cussed at for that one!
  • We have pulled a wrapped Christmas gift (for my sister) from under the tree at home and sold it on Christmas Eve!
  • I started at the age of 18 and hired my mom as my staff. Try going without Mom’s food when there is a disagreement!
  • I work with my dad, and he always calls me Troyki on the sales floor. My name is Troy, and I tell him over and over that is not professional. “Let me get Troyki for you!” SMH
  • Our customers assuming my wife and I were together before we actually were.
  • The cutest thing recently has been our grandson’s inquiry “What did you sell today?” (He’s 9) That’s one of the first things he asks.
  • Grandson pushed the panic button instead of the door buzzer and was surprised when the police came.
  • I was using our large melting torch, and as I turned off the gas, it popped and was very loud. My wife screamed bloody murder.
  • Many clients think all staff are related to me.
  • When I call vendors, they think it’s my son; it’s like I don’t even exist.
  • When we were younger in our business, a woman tried to set my husband up on a date with her granddaughter in front of me. She didn’t realize we were married.
  • Customers assuming my mother-in-law was my wife or that my wife was my sister. They basically knew it was a family run store and it was funny how they put the relationships together.
  • My son and I did a 36 hour turn around driving 12 hours to pick up a laser. We didn’t kill each other!
  • Twin granddaughters confused the buyers.
  • Everyone thinks I am my father when I answer the phone.
  • Customers call my sister my mom.
  • People keep asking me if my dad is here. He is actually my husband and is really only 5 years older than me!
  • Customers thinking I’m my father’s wife!!! Ugh!
  • I work with my wife. At the advice of our legal team, I will not be answering this question now or in the future.
  • People asking me if my wife is still married.



When the Kids Have Their Own Careers, Wilkerson Can Help You to Retire

Alex and Gladys Rysman are the third generation to run Romm Jewelers in Brockton, Mass. And after many decades of service to the industry and their community, it was time to close the store and take advantage of some downtime. With three grown children who each had their own careers outside of the industry, they decided to call Wilkerson. Then, the Rysmans did what every jeweler should do: They called other retailers and asked about their own Wilkerson experience. “They all told us what a great experience it was and that’s what made us go with Wilkerson.” says Gladys Rysman. The results? Alex Rysman says he was impressed. “We exceeded whatever I expected to do by a large margin.”

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