Shop Talk is a weekly column featuring locally owned and operated businesses. This week, we talk to Sharon Jeffers, owner of The Parson’s Daughter in Norwich.
How long have you lived in the area?
More than 20 years.
Tell me about your business:
I sell premium bulk chocolates, old-fashioned and popular candies, as well as a fine selection of vintage and new gifts along with personalized gift arrangements.
Describe a typical day in your business:
Each day is unique and special, but always fun with a new story to tell.
Where do you see this business in five years?
In five years, I hope it continues being a vibrant part of downtown Norwich, frequented by visitors, tourists (and) corporations. I want my business to remain a sweet and happy place.
How did you get started in this line of work?
It just started with an idea and a passion that kept moving forward.
Describe a memorable moment in your workplace:
My own and customers’ memories create the ambiance of my business, so it is hard to isolate one.
What is the most challenging part of what you do?
The bookkeeping part of the business is a challenge for me, so I have a wonderful accountant who eases the challenge of bookwork.
The most enjoyable?
I really enjoy that part of my work when I am renewing fond memories for some customers and creating a “wow” experience for others.
What have you learned from your work?
I have learned that whatever you give, you get back many times.
How do you define success for your business?
My riches aren’t in the bank, so success for me are the returning customers, creating something that makes people happy.
What are some advantages as well as drawbacks of doing business in this area?
The high cost of workman’s compensation could be an issue, but I have tailored my hours and business savvy to accommodate both my needs and those of my customers. This is a drawback for any small business, I think.
What sets you apart from your competitors?
My peppermint pink bags certainly help to make my business stand out.
Also, I go the extra mile in service, and the great selection of premium chocolates, candies and gifts are unlike any other store.
What advice would you give to someone trying to enter your field of work?
Don’t let anyone or anything stand in the way of your dreams.
Shop Talk interviews are conducted by Terry Hannum. For information, call The Daily Star at 432-1000, ext. 217, or e-mail email@example.com.