I am now a certified AGS Graduate Sales Associate!
I started working at Johnson Jewelers in January 2020. What a time to start a new job, especially one at a small retail store, but that should be it’s own blog post. I started with little to no experience in jewelry sales, or jewelry for that matter. Being a minimalist when it comes to jewelry, I figured that would be ok since I was being hired to run the social media and handle any I.T. related issues at the store. Having more knowledge about the jewelry I was photographing and helping to sell became more and more important so I signed up to take the Graduate Sales Associate course through American Gem Society.
The course consisted of 7 chapters – Diamonds, Colored Gemstones, Pearls, Metals, Watches, Jewelry History and Styles, and Sales and Leadership. The course was all online. It was a series of modules that I could complete at my own pace and each one had quizzes to help solidify the learning. Everything would culminate in a 100 multiple choice question test that was online and proctored. I passed with a score of 94% and earned the title of Graduate Sales Associate. I even got a fancy certificate and pin!
Here are some of the interesting things I learned along the way.
- Out of all of the characteristics about a diamond – cut, color clarity, carat weight – the one that has the greatest impact on the beauty is cut. This is why here at Johnson Jewelers, we select a very high cut quality when selecting diamonds to present to you for your engagement ring or other piece of jewelry. Depending on your preferences and budget, we can play around with the other C’s, but we don’t budge on cut.
- When evaluating the quality of gemstones, hardness refers to the resistance to scratching and is measured on Moh’s Hardness Scale from 1-10, 10 being the hardest which is what a diamond rates. While toughness is the resistance to breaking and is measured Excellent, Good, Fair and Poor.
- Kokichi Mikimoto is known as the Father of Cultured Pearls. He pioneered a way to mass produce pearls by seeding the oyster with a small amount of mother of pearl and went on to use other methods. Isn’t that cool?
- Platinum, gold, and silver are known as noble metals. People rarely are allergic to pure gold or silver but instead to the alloy mixed in.
- Watch movements fall under three categories – Manual: a mainspring turns the gears and requires manual winding, Automatic: wound by the wearer’s arm via kinetic energy, and Quartz: vibration of quartz crystal, powered by a battery, this style can be analog or digital.
- Antique refers to jewelry that is over 100 years old, while vintage can include many decades. Estate jewelry is jewelry with a past and it can be antique or vintage.
- Important factors to successful sales include: know your inventory, know policies & procedures, know competition, always be positive, and establish personal goals.
The AGS values ethics, knowledge, consumer protection, customer service, professionalism, and education. Johnson Jewelers is a proud member of AGS and I am now a proud certified sales associate! With this knowledge, I hope to better serve in my role here at Johnson Jewelers.