Saturday, 3 March 2012
Saturday Story Time - Bipolar Edition
It was about 1995. I had been doing jewellery insurance claims for some time, and believed that I was doing a great job for my clients and for the insurance adjusters. It’s a difficult balance.
I seemed to strike the right chord with a lady who called my business partner and raved about the service she received. Most insurance claimants came to me under a lot of stress; having had their homes broken into. I prided myself on being compassionate and doing everything I could to make a difficult situation a little easier.
Because we had a small inventory and people kept on losing a wide variety of jewellery from every era, I was the special-order king. I had a Columbia catalog from the 1950s with bridal designs that Libman was sometimes able to supply. I often had to source items from multiple suppliers to settle an insurance claim.
Among our inventory were some older cluster rings that the previous owner had bought. My raving fan had chosen one of these cluster rings as part of her insurance replacement. A couple of weeks later a diamond fell out of this ring. She called and blasted me on the phone for selling her inferior product. When she dropped the ring off, she once again “ripped me a new one”. Once I had my goldsmith repair the ring and tighten all of the claws up, I offered to hand-deliver her ring. In her entry-way I had to listen to her complaints all over again.
At the end her husband looked at me with sympathy and apologized for her behavior. My only consolation was that he appreciated my handling of the situation.
I did learn a couple of things from that situation. The first was that even though I was glad to get rid of that dinosaur from my inventory, it was not particularly well-built. Selling anything that you know won’t last is going to bite you in the butt sooner or later. The second thing I learned was to beware the bi-polar personality.
Have a great Saturday.