The cannabis industry has rapidly expanded into a lucrative business, especially in recent years. As more countries and regions are legalizing herb for recreational and medicinal purposes, the opportunity to make money opening your own production or distribution cannabis operation has – and is continuing to -increase exponentially.
Both entrepreneurs and investors have recognized how successful starting their own cannabis project can be. In order to break into the field and survive within one of the most competitive, fast-growing industries today, there are several things to take into consideration. Once you acknowledge these details, you will be more successful in starting your own cannabis operation.
Identify Your Best Skills and Use Them to Your Advantage
To be the best you can be at whatever you want to achieve, you first need to figure out how to do that. What are your greatest strengths? Where does your experience lie? Once you identify what your strengths are, you can hone them and use them to your advantage as you open a business in the cannabis industry.
Maybe you are really good at communicating and have excellent writing skills. Channel those skills into networking and advertising your business to the right people. If your skills are more creative, begin creating a brand for your business. If your greatest strength is in management and bookkeeping, then you are already at an advantage, from a business perspective.
Whatever your greatest skill, don’t let it go to waste! Use that skill every day and in as many ways as you can think of. Another important aspect of building your skill set is honing in on some of your best traits and making them better. Take courses, read every book and talk to everyone you can; absorb as much knowledge as you.
Find a Niche Within the Industry
As with many industries, it is important to stand out and find a niche that you can fill. Especially in the cannabis industry, which is relatively new, it can be easier to find a niche that has yet to be filled. There may be something you have recognized has not been utilized or you have found a more efficient way of doing things; use that to your advantage and own that niche, making yourself indispensable to other cannabis professionals.
Founders of the company Jane are a great example of this. They noticed that banks were weary of dealing with marijuana dispensary cash in states that have legalized cannabis production and sale but that have not legalized it at the federal level. They created kiosks that operate “like a marijuana ATM machine – in reverse”, tracking payments and inventory and safely storing the cash inside the kiosks. Another is Simon’s entheogen & ethnobotanicals blog, a great resource for people new to this industry.
Don’t be closed off to the unexpected helping you get your foot in the door. One of your hobbies could turn into a business that helps you succeed. Maybe you love to cook and are good at it; create a cannabis bakery and start selling your baked goods to existing dispensaries. Whatever your hobby, explore the possibilities for the best way into the industry.
Network, Network, Network!
This isn’t necessarily specific to the cannabis industry but cannot be overlooked. When starting your own business in any field, it is important to make connections to people that can help your business really take off. In the cannabis industry, it is particularly important because the industry is newer and more intimate. By talking to and making business connections with a lot of people and the right people, your business will be that much better.
Network the right way by talking to everyone, going to cannabis conventions and following up every time you meet someone with a personalized, detailed email.
Act Professional, Always
It’s no secret that the cannabis industry has a reputation for being laid back and casual. In reality, the industry operates extremely professionally, being run by individuals who understand the promise of cash if they run their business the right way. Shed your inner stoner and loose the tacky slang. Acting like a serious, educated professional will prove that you are a force to be reckoned with and put experienced industry leader’s trust in you.
Learn From Industry Failures
Since the cannabis industry has been through many changes and developments as it has expanded, there are undoubtedly many mistakes to learn from. Part of learning how to excel in any industry is learning what NOT to do.
Every time you are in a networking situation, use it as an opportunity to ask questions from successful industry professionals.
Ask: what would you have done differently? Is there anything you regret you didn’t do? How do you think I could avoid that as I open my business? What mistakes did you learn the most from?
The cannabis industry is a great way to combine something you love and use for recreational and medicinal purposes with a way to make a lot of money. Isn’t that everyone’s dream; doing what you love and making money at the same time? Using these tips and your own personal creativity, your business in the cannabis industry will grow as fast as your bud!