If you are worried about the validity of your cannabis business, particularly of the opinions and advice offered by your workers (dispensaries and cultivation businesses alike), you are not alone. Whether it is medical or recreational marijuana, businesses have struggled from the onset to have the advice and information they provide to clients be considered valid and true. The good news is that recent research has shown that the individuals working in the industry are truly experts, in some cases, more so than doctors and pharmacists (Simon, Matt). That’s because they have experience and understand the effects cannabis products can have on individuals based on their body types, tolerance levels, and lifestyles. So how can you capitalize on this fact, and truly make your business stand out as a valid, and safe, place to gather accurate information on cannabis? We’ve compiled a list of three key tips to help you succeed in this expanding industry.
Create a clear line between Medical information and Cannabis information
While you and your staff might have personal opinions about cannabis, as important as those are, make sure to always draw a clear line when someone’s questions or needs should be put to a medical professional, not a cannabis professional. For instance, it was found that in Colorado, many dispensaries, when approached by pregnant women looking for cures for morning sicknesses, recommended cannabis products to them (Nedelman, Michael). While the true effects of cannabis use during pregnancy are not known, doctors have warned against it. They readily agree that cannabis is not as bad as alcohol or cigarettes, but since so little is known, and it is still an altering substance, doctors consistently tell pregnant women to stay away. Lines like that should be clearly defined to ensure your cannabis business is taken seriously by the wider community, including the skeptics.
Use your years of experience and knowledge to educate and build rapport
Doctors often recommend medical marijuana without truly understanding its side effects (Simon, Matt). This is due, in part, to the mystery surrounding marijuana, and also because physicians may not have the insider knowledge and experience of a cannabis professional. If you’re a serious cannabis businessperson, you know how cannabis works in various circumstances. Your knowledge is based on the person, dosage, and type of consumption as well as the numerous strains and what they are best suited for. So, when people come in with a cannabis recommendation, invest the time to help them understand their needs and what may help to meet their pain and medical conditions. This is your opportunity to build that relationship and establish yourself as a subject matter expert. As you prove your cannabis knowledge, you’ll have even more opportunities to educate users, doctors, pharmacists, and anyone who wants to know, the basic cannabis differences, and why it’s crucial to know them.
Hire the right people, and invest in them
This one might seem obvious, but continued investment in your own employees and colleagues is one of the best ways to establish yourself and your business as valid. This starts by hiring the right employees and finding new and constant ways to increase their knowledge, and your own. Keep up to date on issues and misunderstandings in the industry so you and your team know what concerns you might need to combat before they enter your door.
Overall? Think smart, think ahead, and use your unique position as a cannabis professional to help educate the industry, users, and outsiders on ways to have a safe, healthy cannabis community. This will set you apart and validate your business and products.
Simon, Matt. “Lots of Doctors Recommend Weed Without Understanding It.” Wired, Conde Nast, 14 May 2018, www.wired.com
Nedelman, Michael. “Marijuana Shops Recommend Products to Pregnant Women.” CNN, Cable News Network, 10 May 2018, www.cnn.com