Business 5 in 5 with Rick Grimes

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Rick Grimes owner of Certified Jewelers in Naples, FL

5 Questions in 5 Minutes

An interview with Rick Grimes, Owner of Certified Jewelers

Rick, how did you get into this business? How did you get to this position in this company?

Well, it’s a long story, but I was born and raised in Providence, Rhode Island. You know, Providence was the capital of the jewelry industry. And that was back, 50, 60 years ago when they basically made all the jewelry for Avon and so on. And then, China started taking over and the big companies started closing down. But, I did work for a very large manufacturer, one of the largest in the United States. That’s where I got my background.

In 1981, my dad and I started Henrick’s Jewelers in Bonita Springs. We expanded into Certified Jewelers. And now we have a Superstore called Certified Jewelers.

What does Certified Jewelers do? What type of things do you sell and what type of services do you provide?

Well, we’re a full-service jewelry store, which is unusual. Nowadays we don’t just sell, a lot of people just want to sell, sell, sell. We repair basically everything. You know, any kind of gold or silver. We have the latest tools. We even have two lasers to fix rubies, emeralds, sapphires or any kind of colored stone jewelry because the laser doesn’t throw any heat. So we don’t burn up a colored stone, even a diamond. We use the lasers on it. So we’re able to service jewelry for one thing.

And we have a superstore now, so we have everything that can be offered in a jewelry store, from precious and non-precious stones to gold chains to, of course, all the diamond products. We have a full service jewelry store. We don’t exclude the little things either. We have items that sell for $99 and we have jewelry that sells for $49,000. So we’re able to take care of everyone, from the young person to the older person.

As the owner of Certified Jewelers, how do you measure success day to day?

Well, for me, success is “I’m happy where I’m at.” Even at my age today, I enjoy coming to work. It’s really enjoyable to come to work. So, it just makes me happy.

Could you give me an example of success within your company?

Every person who I have working at this time has been working here at least 10 years. When a person starts working at Certified Jewelers, they never leave. I’ve never had a person leave in my 38 years in the retail business.

I had three people that were with me over 30 years and I basically asked them if they’d like to leave. They could have worked for me for the rest of their lives if they wanted to. But I just thought, “Go enjoy yourself a little bit. Go play some golf, go play some bridge, go ride your motorcycle.” And they did leave. And I had to close down one of my stores. Now, I have just one large Superstore.

What do you see for both the jewelry industry and Certified Jewelers in the next five years?

I don’t see Certified Jewelers getting affected by any of this online business. People come in and see a selection of jewelry like nowhere else, try it on, put it on their fingers, put it on the wrist, put it on the neck. We have the piece of jewelry they are looking for and we complete easily with online jewelry. So, I don’t see any change for us. If anything, I think we will get stronger.

One last question. What does Certified mean exactly?

People are very interested in getting certified diamonds. So that’s really where the name came from. Everything we do is certified. We have gemologists on staff, so we’re able to generate an appraisal when a customer buys something and it’s signed by a gemologist. It is certified to be what it is.

This has been a presentation of American business writers. Clear, concise communication for your business. Visit us at americanbusinesswriters.com

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This has been a presentation of American Business Writers. Clear, concise communication for your business. www.americanbusinesswriters.com