Columnists

State of the Majors 2022: Reflections on Resilience

ColumnistsJun 21, 2022

State of the Majors 2022: Reflections on Resilience

After suffering a professional setback, columnist Peter Smith reflects on our ability to bounce back even when the hits keep on coming.

Peter Smith is an industry consultant, speaker, and sales trainer. He is the author of three books (“Hiring Squirrels,” “Sell Something” and “The Sales Minute”) and a columnist for National Jeweler. He can be reached at TheRetailSmiths@gmail.com.
Editor’s Note: This story first appeared in the print edition of the 2022 State of the Majors. Click here to see the full issue.

“Everyone has a plan ‘til they get punched in the mouth.” So said Mike Tyson, the former heavyweight champion boxer and a man who administered a few such punches in his day.

I got punched in the mouth recently. I lost my job. 

Well, to be more accurate, my position was “eliminated.” 

The circumstances surrounding that decision are decidedly less interesting than my reaction to it; an exterior calmness, followed immediately by a deeply rooted sense of excitement at the adventures to come. Adventures unknown, to be sure, but adventures nonetheless. 

I thought afterward about one of my favorite Truman Capote quotes, “Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.” 

Except, by no reasonable standard, could my recent three-year stint be classified as a failure. I believe, in fact, my tenure at my former company might just be the best work of my entire career.  

So, what was it that fed my optimism in the face of a job loss, an event often compared to death in the way it can psychologically derail people? 

In “The Myths of Happiness,” Sonja Lyubomirsky wrote, “Recent research reveals that people who have experienced some adversity (for example, several negative events or life-changing moments) are ultimately happier (and less distressed, traumatized, stressed or impaired) than those who have experienced no adversity at all. 

“Having a history of enduring several devastating moments toughens us up and makes us better prepared to manage later traumas, big and small.”

“Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.”—Truman Capote

Perhaps, as Lyubomirsky implies, I’ve endured sufficient upheaval, personally and professionally, to have formed the necessary psychological calluses to carry me through a job loss? 

Maybe it was something entirely different; a sense of a job very well done, a box ticked, an opportunity for personal reinvention? 

Or perhaps it was a quiet confidence, knowing that I am primed and ready to make meaningful contributions elsewhere in our industry? 

The newly found time could be a great opportunity to do some more store trainings based on my new book, “The Sales Minute,” or to speak to organizations about the hugely important job of hiring salespeople. 

It also could be that I now have the opportunity to work with smaller brands and suppliers to help get them on track, or the luxury of working with interested retailers, who might appreciate my perspective and counsel. 

Whatever the reason for my positive attitude and upbeat demeanor following my job loss, what is clear is that most of us have a remarkable capacity for resilience in the face of setbacks. 

That resilience can reveal itself in the face of the biggest obstacles, such as losing someone close to us, having a major health scare, breaking up with a significant other, or losing a job. 

As I write this, we are still in the throes of a global pandemic, Russia has commenced the invasion of its neighbor, Ukraine, the stock market is in freefall and inflation is at its highest level in 40 years. And yet, somehow, we will survive all this, pick ourselves up in the morning and get in the game. 

We will tap the necessary reserves of resilience to tackle the demands of our day, minor and major, because of our capacity to keep on keeping on, even in the face of potentially devastating setbacks. 

 Related stories will be right here … 

We’ll do it in our stores when the customer walks out without making a purchase, or when a vendor lets us down with a delivery that seemed important at the time. 

We’ll do it at trade shows when people fail to show for their appointments, or when our outreach efforts are rebuffed, or ignored completely. 

We’ll tap into that resilience when that perfect job applicant takes a position somewhere else, when our jeweler decides to move to another state, or when our best salesperson chooses to go work for someone else. 

In “The Happiness Advantage,” Shawn Achor wrote, “Because thousands of years of evolution have made us so remarkably good at adapting to even the most extreme life circumstances, adversity never hits us quite as hard, or for quite as long, as we think it might.” 

Resilience is not an antidote to disappointment or suffering. It doesn’t mean we won’t occasionally become derailed when we get punched in the mouth. 

It does, however, give us the capacity to pick ourselves up off the canvas and get back in the fight. 

Even when your job is eliminated.  

The Latest

Policies & IssuesJul 01, 2022
U.S. Expands Sanctions to Russian Gold

The U.K, Canada, and Japan have also banned the import of gold originating from Russia.

Recorded WebinarsJul 01, 2022
Watch: What to Know About Livestream Shopping

Jewelry marketing expert Laryssa Wirstiuk shares her tips and tricks for hosting a livestream shopping session.

SourcingJul 01, 2022
De Beers, Botswana Extend Sales Agreement for Third Time

The current agreement, originally set to expire in 2020, will now go through June 2023.

Brought to you by
Preparing for Proposal Season with High-Quality, A.I.-Graded Natural Diamonds

Rare & Forever is helping to create an enjoyable diamond buying experience for the millions of newly-engaged couples.

CollectionsJul 01, 2022
Piece of the Week: Brent Neale x Edie Parker Pendant

The brands have collaborated on a fine jewelry ode to cannabis.

Weekly QuizJun 30, 2022
This Week’s Quiz
Test your knowledge of the latest jewelry news with this quick test.
Take the Quiz
Supplier BulletinJun 30, 2022
Here’s Where You’ll Find The Best Online Jewelry Auctions

Sponsored by HiBid

CrimeJun 30, 2022
What JSA’s Annual Report Tells Us About Jewelry Crime in 2021

Plus, JSA President John Kennedy talks about the trajectory of industry crime over the last 20 years.

Brought to you by
Discover The Extraordinary Italian Jewelry In Las Vegas!

Experience all the Italian Jewelry market has to offer in Las Vegas.

CrimeJun 30, 2022
Smash-and-Grab Robbers Hit Booth at TEFAF: Watch the Video

The fair was evacuated temporarily Tuesday after four suspects smashed a showcase and stole jewelry from British jeweler Symbolic & Chase.

Events & AwardsJun 30, 2022
Nominations Are Open for Gem Awards 2023

The 21st annual awards show and gala will take place in New York City next March.

Events & AwardsJun 30, 2022
Registration Open for JIS Fall in Miami

The jewelry trade show is scheduled for Sept. 30-Oct. 3 at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

AuctionsJun 29, 2022
Bonhams Expands Again with Purchase of Paris Auction House

It is the fifth acquisition under the ownership of private equity firm Epiris, which bought Bonhams in 2018.

MajorsJun 29, 2022
Zales Has a New Diamond Cut

The “Celebration Infinite” diamond has more than three times the number of facets in a traditional brilliant-cut diamond, the retailer said.

WatchesJun 29, 2022
Bulova Introduces New Frank Sinatra Watches

The brand again partnered with the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts High School to celebrate the launch of the “Summer Wind” watches.

SurveysJun 29, 2022
U.S. Platinum Jewelry Demand Starts 2022 on a Strong Note

Retail ounce sales were up 23 percent year-over-year in Q1, according to the recent Platinum Jewellery Business Review.

Events & AwardsJun 29, 2022
Registration Is Now Open for the HardRock Summit 2022

Scheduled for Sept. 8-11, the event will comprise more than 310,000 square feet of show floor, exhibits, and education space.

IndependentsJun 28, 2022
This Jeweler Is Celebrating 40 Years With 40 Days of Giveaways

Continental Diamond in Minneapolis is awarding a total of $25,000 in prizes via daily sweepstakes.

CollectionsJun 28, 2022
Melissa Kaye’s New Collection Doubles the Color

“Lenox” marks the designer’s foray into bespoke jewels and large colored gemstones.

Events & AwardsJun 28, 2022
Second AGS Virtual Education Conference Is All About Negotiation Skills

“Confluence” is happening in August.

MajorsJun 27, 2022
George Holmes, Longtime Head Editor of JCK Magazine, Dies at 93

He first took a job at then Philadelphia-based Jewelers’ Circular-Keystone in 1963 and retired in 1996.

MajorsJun 27, 2022
Mayors, Analog:Shift Team Up With Goop

The lifestyle platform will stock fine jewelry and watches from the retailers on its website and in store.

CrimeJun 27, 2022
JSA Warns of ‘Pandemic’ of Distraction Thefts Nationwide

It cited two recent cases in California, plus incidents in Florida, Kansas, and Illinois.

IndependentsJun 27, 2022
Lewis Jewelers Set to Open New Ann Arbor Store This Summer

The 10,000-square-foot location allows for expanded collections from design partners while continuing custom design and other services.

CollectionsJun 27, 2022
This Designer Has Found a New Way to Bring Gemstones to Life

Svetlana Lazar’s “Wishing Well” collection utilizes an innovative component to mimic the movement of water beneath them.

Supplier BulletinJun 24, 2022
AGTA GemFair™ Denver is the Place to Be in September!

Sponsored by AGTA

Recorded WebinarsJun 24, 2022
Vegas Jewelry Recap: The Editors Weigh In

Watch the webinar in which National Jeweler’s editors talk about jewelry market week trends and their predictions for the rest of 2022.

MajorsJun 24, 2022
Banter by Piercing Pagoda Celebrates Pride with ‘SayGay’ Necklace

All proceeds up to $25,000 will benefit the It Gets Better Project, a nonprofit that supports LGBTQ+ youth.

×

This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy