Neil launched his own business selling custom-made diamond jewellery online. He shares his tips for turning your passion into a career by setting up your own company.
Name: Neil Dutta
Company: Angelic Diamonds
What is your job? Director
How long have you been doing this job? 9 years
University: Leeds Beckett University
Degree subject: Business studies
A-Levels: Business studies, economics, geography
1. What was your very first job?
My first job was working for Orange mobile phones.
2. What did you want to do when you were at school?
3. How did you find out about the industry?
At the start it was through a chance meeting with someone in the industry. Then we started to research the Career Zone more by going to trade shows and speaking to lots of different people in the industry.
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4. How did you get there?
Through hard work and always trying to learn and find better ways of doing things to improve my business. I have always had an entrepreneurial streak and started out by setting up a company selling computer consumables.
When the opportunity arose within the jewellery industry, enabling me to build a business creating handcrafted and bespoke jewellery from scratch –something I have always had a passion for - I jumped at the chance. Angelic Diamonds was born: we’re an online store selling high-quality diamond jewellery to customers across the UK.
5. What is a typical day like?
My days are usually very varied, but a typical day might include speaking to suppliers, customers and staff and looking at ways to take the business forward. It also involves looking at new product designs, including diamond engagement rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings, as well as managing marketing ideas and budgets.
I like to take an active role in new product development, working with our customers and the highly skilled craftspeople within the business to take products from concept through to the finished piece of jewellery.
6. What’s the best thing about your job?
Definitely the product and the reaction we get from customers when they receive their order. I get to see some amazing pieces of diamond jewellery. Working with customers to create bespoke products from scratch that will last them a lifetime is very rewarding.
7. What is the most challenging thing about your job?
Running your own business has many challenges but is also very rewarding. Probably the biggest challenge, especially at the beginning, is the amount of time you need to dedicate to it. My family and friends have supported me throughout my career and this has helped me to bounce around ideas, dedicate myself to the business.
8. What advice do you have for people who want to do what you do?
Always believe in yourself and don’t be afraid to take a calculated risk to move forward. It also helps if you have a passion for the industry.
9. What things do you wish you’d known before starting your career?
I tend to only look forward not back. Every day you learn something new, so I don’t think there is anything in particular I wish I would have known.
10. Where would you like to be in 5 years?
Hopefully the business will have grown substantially in five years with many more happy customers.
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