3 things to know before starting a cannabis business

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With the ever-changing scope of the cannabis industry, there are many challenges to entry and success.  Here are a few tips from the founder of a collection of cannabis wellness shops that may help you assess your decision to get involved.  

1. Be prepared to face new challenges each and every day.

When I opened the first 7 Leaf Clover in 2017, council advised us not to use the term “CBD.” Not on our website. Not on our signs. Nowhere. We didn’t even say it in store. We said the whole word: cannabidiol.

On December 1, 2018, CBD was a schedule one drug. December 31, 2018 came around and it was rescheduled as a schedule 5 drug.
As I write this, today’s buzz is all about beverages and edibles. CBD water and CBD juice are not just water and juice anymore. Now, they are considered dietary supplements, have to be labeled as such, and have to be produced in special facilities. 

There are federal, state, county, district, and council rules that you have to be compliant with across the board. And yes, these are constantly changing as well. As if you didn’t already have to wear multiple hats by being a business owner, this industry forces you to have a second full-time job keeping up with the everchanging rules and regulations. Thank goodness for lawyers!

2. Knowing everything about the product should not be considered excellent, but rather the bare minimum.

Know your stuff. It’s not a passion project if you don’t know what you are selling. Let’s take retail for an example: You need to understand everything about the ingredients, the sourcing, the extraction process, and any other information that could answer shoppers’ questions. Knowing everything about the product should not be considered excellent, but rather the bare minimum. It’s the only way to do right by your customers.

3. Surround yourself with great people.

I’ve made some great friends in the industry who have introduced me to other great people, given me invaluable tips and helped me navigate these choppy waters. I’m super grateful that my in-store team shows up for work, does their job, and helps me run this business as if it were their own. Any success I have is largely owed to my amazing team. I definitely wouldn’t be having as much fun as I am working 10+ hour days, not getting a chance to sit down and eat a meal because of a never ending to-do list, and dealing with all the trials and tribulations that come along with owning and operating a business if I didn’t have a strong team around me every single day.

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