Report from New Orleans
You’d think that after a lifetime in the industry, Matt and I would know all there is to know about jewelry. But, honestly, we both feel there’s so much we don’t know! Our industry is so vibrant, and so endlessly interesting, we have to work hard to keep up with it all. Which is why I was in New Orleans recently, at the American Gemological Society’s Conclave 2015.
The American Gem Society is the country’s preeminent jewelry trade organization dedicated to consumer protection. Since 1934, they’ve been making it easier and safer to buy jewelry of any kind. Even if you don’t know the first thing about cut and clarity, AGS can help you, educate you, and point you in the direction of jewelers that are dedicated to protecting you.
Fewer than 5% of all jewelers are members of the American Gem Society. These are the jewelers who have dedicated themselves to consumer protection, ethical business practices, and development and maintenance of superior gemological skills and knowledge. To join AGS, every member must go through a peer-reviewed application process followed by an annual recertification exam. This process ensures that every AGS member is at the top of their game, and more importantly, each one has pledged to protect you, the consumer.
I am on the national Board of the Society and this year was asked to lead the Marketing 2015 Workshop. (So you see, I really was working!) It was a great honor and a lot of fun. In addition I learned a lot, too, at the other workshops. One of the great benefits of these Conclaves is the networking and information-sharing that goes on continuously. I’m always surprised and inspired by what other folks are doing and thinking in their markets, and it helps me and Matt ensure that we’re aware of all the latest trends and advancements in our industry.