When you meet someone who is totally successful in his chosen work you have to congratulate him. True? Phuketindex.com had an exclusive interview with Khun Jitti Indhrachareon, Managing Director of Phuket Pearl Industry Co. Ltd and recipient of “The Excellent Agriculturist in Aquaculture” award 2009, from the Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives. We caught up with him in his showroom, The Phuket Pearl Factory.
Phuketindex: How did you start in this business?
Jitti: My grandfather was the owner of a private island and he first started the pearl business. With the growth of the tourist industry, we reorganized the company to move with the times, firstly by making our product known to the public and secondly by offering our products directly to the customer rather than through a middle man like some of our competitors. But the major secret of our success is that we have never refinanced. We have used only our profits to expand the business so that when disasters strike, like the tsunami, we can survive. It has proven to be a great protection during bleak periods.
Phuketindex: How do you approach staff management?
Jitti: We have a total of 30 staff, 10 of whom are involved in the labouring side and the others are in the administrative department. All of them can shift into other areas of work which makes us very flexible and is useful to both us and them.
Phuketindex: What is the organization’s concept?
Jitti: We are focused on being the top corporation in terms of productivity, innovation, and distribution of Phuket pearl. We are emphasizing the quality of the pearl to satisfy our customers, and continually train our employees to make them more technically knowledgeable. We do research twice a year to study in depth anything which might have a bearing or provide important information in our field.
Phuketindex: Is it correct to say that you researched your own marketing channels?
Jitti: Yes, I always learn from marketing to my clients around Phang-nga and Phuket. When I go to them I sometimes use ‘guerrilla marketing’. If today I could not sell to them, I will go again tomorrow.
Phuketindex: Tell us about your award from the Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives.
Jitti: Yes, I did get an award for our work as ‘Excellent Agriculturists’. The awarding committee considered our work ethic, life history as a company and leadership in our field.
Phuketindex: Why do you think that your company was singled out for this award?
Jitti: I think we were a bit lucky to be the ones selected for the award, but it was due in all probability to the high quality of our products – necklaces, earrings, pendants etc., which we produce ourselves. We always use local materials form local farms.
Phuketindex: How is agriculture related to the tourist industry in Phuket?
Jitti: I think we are lucky to live in Thailand; being so close to the equator gives us a competitive advantage when it comes to growing because of the climate and water conditions and Phuket’s eastern coast is perfect for pearl production. But Thailand is also a tourist destination so it is natural that visitors will want to explore all aspects of our way of life here. Thus, the two industries become interconnected and as long as we are able to provide customer satisfaction we can co-exist harmoniously.
Phuketindex: How does your family support on your work?
Jitti: They are a very powerful support to me and the company. In every sphere we have an own responsibility, so family is the master key in my work and life.
Phuketindex: What do you do about your holidays?
Jitti: Seriously, I do not focus on wealth. If I have a long vacation, it is enough for me to take my child for a drive around Thailand, looking for inspiration in our culture.