Meet the Horsham business owner who thrives on the town’s ‘great sense of community’
The County Times is launching a new business Q and A feature – focusing on firms in Horsham District.
In this week’s edition we speak to Dominic Sakakini, owner of Sakakini Jewellers.
1) Tell us about you and your business.
I have been trading here in the Carfax for 17 years. Not only are we a retail jeweller but also we specialise in bespoke design, so consider ourselves a personal jewellers! We have our own workshop, so like to state that there’s nothing we can’t make! I am also a diamond trader so I teach people to buy diamonds for pleasure and profit as investments that you can wear. I am also passionate about educating people, so as an avid public speaker, I’ve done many educational talks about buying diamonds, what to look for and be cautious of so I can empower people with this knowledge.
2) How has your business adapted as lockdown restrictions eased?
We have adapted by finding that people preferred making private appointments to come and discuss their requirements. Implementing basic things such as sanitiser and maximum people in the shop. We found it important to work with what the clients feel comfortable with and requests, if they feel more comfortable without masks then we don’t push it. After all its not as if we are up close and personal! Especially when people are wanting to purchase high ticket items, having a face to face conversation is important.
3) Do you think the ‘new normal’ will change the way your business operates and if so how?
No, because we are happy to change adapt to what the client wants and needs without taking unnecessary risks.
4) What piece of advice that you now know would you give to yourself when you started the business?
We have been through two recessions and each time we have reinvented the business to adapt! The key is thinking outside the box, to find what the public want and need and not being afraid to put ourselves out there. Connect with the local people - social media has been a great tool for me to get to know people! Giving back to the community is also very important - offer a service to your community!
5) What makes running a business in Horsham enjoyable?
I enjoy the recognition from the community, we have many loyal customers and our Google/Facebook reviews shine through! There is a great sense of community being here in the heart of Horsham. I love to see the local people sitting in the Carfax. We’ve been trading in Horsham for 17 years, so we see many people come and sadly go! We know people well enough to see births, deaths, and marriages! We pride ourselves on being a family jeweller.
6) What do businesses need to do to be successful in these challenging times?
Try to buy your building as quickly as you can! So many businesses struggle due to landlord discrepancies and prices sky rocketing, or at least don’t be afraid to negotiate. The premises you chose to trade from will make or break you. Secondly, ensuring exceptional customer service is a must! These are uncertain times and people won’t be lining up outside your shop if you don’t look after them. Take pride in your products and services and look after your staff (Look after your staff and they’ll look after you!) Be creative with how you present and market your business, it doesn’t have to cost a fortune but sets the tone for your business.
Would you like your business to be featured in our editorial series? Email [email protected]