So You Want to Work in Weed?
- By Steven Turetsky
So you want to work in weed?
Considering you’re reading our blog right now, you are probably aware that Cannabis, America’s next big industry is blowing up and everyone is trying to get a piece of the infused pie. We receive dozens of emails a day; everyone from recent college grads, to bored corporate executives wanting a change, to your grandmother…seriously, your grandma tried to sell us her homemade brownie recipe. Although we don’t have any positions at Dixie available at this time, I wanted to put together a guide so you guys have some more information and resources to help you break into this budding industry.
Are you sure you want to work in weed?
One of the big problems I have found in aspiring cannabis employees is their misunderstanding of the inner workings of the industry and unrealistic expectations. Here are some examples.
- I’m gonna be rich!!Look, there is a ton of upside from a business perspective in cannabis, and with that a great potential for wealth. However, the industry’s success does not automatically equate to your swimming pool of cash on a Vegas skyscraper. Although it’s fun to dream, patience is key in the cannabis industry.
- Where else can I get high at work??!!This is by far the greatest misconception in our industry. My friends from back east always ask me, “do you just get eat edibles all day?” Not only is it illegal to use cannabis on premises (seems strange I know), but it is against our company policy to work under the influence. You wouldn’t show up to work drunk, right? Same concept. Across most of the industry, businesses are super professional and compliance with MED regulations is of top priority. Save it for happy hour – although now that I think about it, I’m always here past 4:20…
- I want to work in cannabis because it’d be so easy!!
Our products are chill and fun, of course, but business is still business. We work in a fast-paced environment, where every day poses new challenges. Ever-changing regulatory framework, dispensary and customer issues, constant barrage from media outlets keep us on our toes nonstop at Dixie HQ! To an extent, yes, working in cannabis is easy. But that’s because we all love what we do and know the impact we are having on world history. That’s what gets me out of bed every morning.
Great! Now put the Cheez-its down, get off the couch, and get to work!
- Prepare/revise your resume. It seems like pretty standard advice, but over 80% of our online inquires for employment come to us without a resume. Treat your future cannabis employer like any other job you would prospect. Most cannabis executives come from other industries and treat common businesses practices like any other industry
- (In Colorado) Get Badged! Regulations on employment vary across states, make sure you look into this first!Every employee in the cannabis industry in Colorado must be approved by the Marijuana Enforcement Division and given a licensed badge #. There are two types of badges: key and support. Unless you plan to start your own business, stick with the support badge for now. The badge evaluation involves a background check and residency evaluation. It costs $150 at the moment. To learn about these specific requirements and see if you’re eligible, check: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/enforcement/medical-marijuana-occupational-licensing
- Regulations on employment vary across states, make sure you look into this first!
- Pro-Tip: You greatly increase your chances of being hired if you are badged prior to applying for jobs. Include your badge number on the header of your resume! Even including a picture of your badge is a good move.
- Pro-Tip: Do not mention previous illegal cannabis employment. “I used to grow before it was legal, I really know my stuff” “My friends and I supplied to our university for a few years, so I am quite knowledgeable and experienced in sales” Seriously, we get this kind of stuff. I know it may seem counter-intuitive, but this is a red flag for us. Good things to include: Previous experience in start-up environments, successes in team environments, diverse skill sets, and ability to adapt to change
- Pro-Tip: Cover letters are great. They give you a chance to tell your story. Why do you want to work in cannabis? Tell us here.
Stay tuned and learn more from my next post – THE BIG HUNT