b'WHEN MCKINSEY & COMPANY SPEAKS.Recently McKinsey & Company put out a perspective on the luxury-goods industry focused on what to do during and following COVID-19. You may not think of your store as a purely luxury business because you sell bridal jewelry, gift-giving opportunities, and expressions of love (and sometimes a little guilt). These may be more like necessities in your mind, but some fundamentals in the study are worth a look.HERES MY TAKE ON WHAT EVERY JEWELER SHOULD CONSIDER: By Bill Boyajian 20-30% of all luxury brands are purchased outside of a buyerscant always expect them to come into your store.home country, largely due to global travel. Every jeweler has experienced the regular customer who purchases a jewelryHopefully, youve figured out that cash is king during a crisis. piece overseas on a cruise or vacation only to bring it to youIve begged my clients to sell off, liquidate, and scrap aged to see if they got a good deal. Ugh! But put that aside for now. and underperforming inventory now. Its something theyve needed to do for a long time. And so do you. Just do it so Withairlinetravelandexoticvacationscurtailed,ifnotyou can have the cash reserves to withstand whatever new eliminated in 2020, you need to promote buying fine gemsnormal we encounter, and to take advantage of having what andjewelrytoyourregularcustomerbaseovertravelmost others wont have: greenbacks to buy right!experiences. Jewelers have long complained about the travel industry being their biggest competitor. Now is theStabilize your business now, but dont loose sight of the future. time to do something about it. Combine your bricks with clicks as an imperative. Retain your top salespeople and let go of underachievers. You now have Thebuyingpublichasfinallylearnedthatshoppingandthe opportunity to do what youve wanted to do for years but buying local is a luxury they have long taken for granted.never had either the courage or reason to do. Up your game Therehasneverbeenabettertimetopromotelocally,in every category. And that goes for you, too.sharing your commitment to the community through what you do and through your philanthropic efforts. Nor has there Anticipate shifts in consumer attitudes as expressed in their beenabettertimetotakeadvantageofsomerevengecurrent behavior. Not everything will change when we reach spending through your business. the next normal, but some things will. Even your thinking has changed, so why wouldnt you expect your customersRethink 2020 quickly by reforecasting your business plan tothinking to change? Jewelry is still an emotional purchase, meet lowered, realistic sales goals. Cast at least two differentbut tastes for the classics, hand craftsmanship, custom and scenarios: a worst case and a thoughtful, reasoned case. Youbespoke, and even heritage pieces may continue to expand. may want a thirdthe optimistic versionbut Im more inclinedDo your homework and be prepared. to save that for a happier ending to the year than expected.Winston Churchill made this quote famous: The pessimistThe pandemic has challenged all of us in 2020, but with sees difficulty in every opportunity whereas the optimist seesthoughtful consideration of the above elements, careful opportunity in every difficulty. Even if youre a pessimist, lookscenario planning, and effective execution of your strategy, around you. Jewelry retailers will be going out of businessyou will be able to weather this storm, and hopefully at a much faster rate than previous years. That means moreemerge even stronger in your marketplace.opportunity for you to take market share in your region. My experience tells me that most jewelers fail miserably at this.Bill BoyajianChange that. Bill is the former long-time president of the Gemological Institute of America, and is I f you were dragging your feet on the digital side of business,currently founder & president of Bill Boyajian & Associates, Inc. His company consults for IhopetheCoronavirushaschangedyourmindandyoura wide variety of businesses in the gem and attitude. If not, you will be one of those going out this year.jewelry industry, specializing in leadership, business, and organizational development, Enhance your digital engagement before its too late. Use yourfamily transition, and succession planning. Bill is website not only as an electronic brochure, but as a sales tool.the author of Developing the Mind of a LeaderYour Path to Lead and Inspire People. He is a sought-after business coach Make sure people can buy right off your website because youand speaker, and can be reached at bill@billboyajianassociates.com.10 | The Jewelry Business Magazine'