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Manager's To Do

Take a Deep Dive Into Your Numbers, Prep for The Holidays, and More Manager’s To-Do Action Items for September

Plus a few tips to keep your staff well-trained.

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illustration of morgan bartel

Sep 5-11

INVENTORY Assess your current bridal offerings: Are your assortments compelling? Do you have the popular looks covered? Do you have enough matching ladies wedding bands? Are you featuring enough of the alternative metal gents bands? Are you stocking some platinum for the discerning client? Do you have enough petite bridal for entry price points? Dig into your POS data from the last 12 months and make sure all the key areas are covered.

MARKETING There’s still time to organize a bridal event this year — get scheduling! How about a loose diamond event, or a trunk show with a designer who specializes in engagement rings, or maybe even something educational with lab-grown diamonds?

HOLIDAY PREP An NRF survey found that 40 percent of shoppers had started their holiday gift buying before Halloween. Time to get busy. Draw up a to-do list covering wrapping paper and gift box orders, ribbon and paper cutting, merchandise rebalancing, cleaning, and Christmas staffing.

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Sep 12-18

INVENTORY Get back in touch with those new friends you made in Vegas. Could you do a merch swap of your poor performers to a jewelry store in a non-competing market? Different area, different tastes, who knows? The main thing is to keep the connection alive.

TRAINING Questions are central to a successful sales system. Discuss with staff the questions they ask on the sales floor. Emphasize that the right questions lead to a quick sales transaction.

Sep 19-25

INVENTORY Review the past year’s special orders per vendor, and if you spot any emerging hot sellers in the data, cross reference to see what you have on hand. “You might see a style of engagement ring being ordered in another metal color than what is in stock, or another diamond shape. You should stock this if you see repetitive orders,” says industry consultant Megan Crabtree.

MARKETING Having a retail jewelry store usually means you are part of the wider wedding business. Partner with other such small businesses such as a florist or wedding venue to explore cross-marketing opportunities. At the very least, ask to place your catalogs in their showroom.

TRAINING Create a schedule for weekly role-playing sessions on bridal skills. Or, if you want to step it up, consider signing employees up for a GIA online training course. Frequent coaching makes each employee feel like they are developing and a trusted member of the business.

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Sep 26-Oct 2

MARKETING It wasn’t purely an accident the surprise proposal became a standard cultural practice: De Beers’ powerful marketing arm learned that when women were involved in the selection process, they picked cheaper rings. By encouraging surprise proposals, the diamond giant shifted the purchasing power to men, the less-cautious spenders. Modern spin: Next time a man is wavering on whether to bring his intended in on the selection process, recommend the joy of surprises (Dave Richardson’s booklet, Pop The Question, is a good place to start).

SALES Work on greetings. Your welcome sets the basis for the entire sales transaction. Keep it low-key and friendly and try to avoid anything that elicits a conditioned or reflexive response.

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She Wanted to Spend More Time with Her Kids. She Called Wilkerson.

Your children are precious. More precious than gold? Absolutely! Just ask Lesley Ann Davis, owner of Lesley Ann Jewels, an independent jewelry store that — until the end of 2023 — had quite a following in Houston, Texas. To spend more time with her four sons, all in high school, she decided to close her store. Luckily, she was familiar with Wilkerson and called them as soon as she knew she wanted to move on to bigger, better and more family-focused things. Was she happy with her decision? Yes, she was. Says Davis, “Any owner looking to make that life change, looking to retire, looking to close, looking for a pause in their career, I would recommend Wilkerson. Hands down!”

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