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Smooth Seller: Edward “Eddie” Guerboian

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Edward “Eddie” Guerboian, owner and president Readers Fine Jewelers, Santa Monica, CA

[h3]Edward Guerboian[/h3]

[h5]Readers Fine Jewelers, Santa Monica, CA[/h5]

[componentheading]PROFILE[/componentheading]

2008 Personal Sales: More than $1,000,000

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[dropcap cap=E]dward Guerboian was born in Cairo, Egypt, into a family of Armenian jewelers. After his move to the United States in 1967, he went to business school and attended the GIA. Eddie, as he prefers to be known, shifted from manufacturing to retail. “That’s my wish, my love and desire, to help clients. I’m a people person.” Eddie and his wife Evelyn own Readers Fine Jewelers, which this year tripled in size from 800 to 2,400 square feet. As for his secret to sales success, Eddie stresses the importance of just being human, a job description that comes with experience, and one that is at once more simple and more complicated than being a salesman.[/dropcap]

[componentheading]INTERVIEW[/componentheading]

• One of the reasons that we’re thriving: People trust us. People want to spend their hard-earned money with an independent family-owned jeweler. They know that if they come in a month or a year later, they are going to see the same people — the owner, the wife, the mother, the son.

• They always spend more than they come for, even though I’m weak on the add-ons. Unless I see there is a need, I don’t push for add-ons, especially in these times, and especially if I know their budget. But the add-ons come naturally — or they will come back and buy something else later.

• When they come to our store they feel like they’re home. It looks high-end but it’s comfortable. It all depends on the staff, though. We’re not cocky. We’re down to earth.

[blockquote class=orange]Be yourself and really be in the client’s shoes. Don’t oversell, and always talk about the positive aspects of your business.[/blockquote]

• I always say, “Welcome to our home. Thank you for coming, feel free to browse. Have a refreshment.”

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• Respect the clients no matter how they’re dressed, how they look, because they are not customers, they are clients — and they become friends.

• Recently, a couple came knocking on the door after I closed. He said “I want to see your new store and I have my girlfriend with me.” So I let them in and he bought an engagement ring and proposed in the store at 7:30. We popped the champagne out, we took a picture, and they put it on Facebook.

[blockquote class=orange]Book recommendations: How to Master the Art of Selling by Tom Hopkins, Hug Your Customers by Jack Mitchell and Selling is Not Brain Surgery; It’s Twice as Hard by James Dion. [/blockquote]

• Customers tell me “you make us feel guilty if we shop somewhere else.”

[span class=note]This story is from the October 2009 edition of INSTORE[/span]

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