I’ve been in the legal cannabis industry for a full six months now and have never been a marijuana guy at all. I came into the business straight out of 12 years in corporate America, one of 70,000 employees, with time spent managing projects, clients and people; dealing with budgets, sales goals, cost projections, client retention goals, employee engagement and all the rest. Now I’m in the middle of the wild west with owners that literally thought they’d clone some plants, kick back with a fat one and watch the money roll in. Needless to say, they’ve been sorely disappointed.
Washington State has three growers for every retail store causing a race to the bottom, with the lowest cost bud winning the sales game but that forced the growers and processors to get by on thinner and thinner margins. I think we’re going to see a lot of the Tier 1 and Tier 2 operations either shut their doors or get bought out by the bigger growers before long.
I was hired by a Tier 3 producer/processor to help them turn the corner to profitability. In addition to nine greenhouses and an indoor grow space they have a great infused drink line, are also getting into the edibles market and recently partnered with another processor that is producing Clear concentrate that we exclusively sell to retailers. A lot of moving parts with few of them working well. The learning curve has been steep, in fact, more of a learning wall than curve.
My aim with this blog is to share some of my lessons learned with the legal recreational cannabis world in the hopes of helping other legal weed companies become and remain profitable. I’m a big supporter of small, local businesses that create good jobs and keep their money locally instead of running on cheap labor and exporting profits to other parts of the world. Let me know if any of this strikes a cord with you, if you have questions or ideas that I’ve missed. I’m here to learn new things too…