Contributor: Bill Simpson
So, you want to get a job in the legal cannabis industry. That’s an exciting prospect, and you are not alone! Cannabis is a rapidly growing industry and there are plenty of different avenues you can explore during your job hunt. Working in the cannabis industry doesn’t necessarily mean working in retail sales at a dispensary, although that’s certainly one option. Let’s explore some tips and tricks for landing the cannabis job of your dreams.
Learn About Cannabis Laws and Industry Trends
To begin, you will definitely want to be well-versed in all things cannabis. You don’t necessarily need to be an expert, depending on which sector of the industry you work for, but you will want to have a good understanding of the cannabis plant, the federal and local laws and regulations, and big industry trends. For example, if you’re hoping to get a job as a budtender, you’ll want to know the laws and regulations in your area to ensure that you will be able to perform your duties without any violations that might put your employer at risk.
Check out news outlets like Marijuana Moment for the latest in cannabis news, as well as nonprofit organizations like Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) and the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) for the latest policy and law updates nationally and locally.
Frame Your Skillset
After you’ve done your homework on the industry and regulations in your area, consider how you can apply the skills that you already utilize in your current position to a job in the cannabis industry. For example, writing or research experience in a different industry is easily transferable to the cannabis industry.
Another example of applying existing skills is using sales experience to find work in B2B sales or retail sales as a budtender. Explore your skill set and experience and look for overlap in some of the job postings that interest you. Make sure your resume and LinkedIn profile are up to date to reflect your current experience so that employers can find you and reach out with relevant positions.
Research the Different Positions Available
There are a lot more jobs in the cannabis industry aside from being a budtender or grower. While these positions are some of the most popular and widely known, there are many that aren’t often considered during a job search that deserve some attention. If you’re specifically interested in a lucrative position, check out these high-paying cannabis industry jobs.
The best way to start your job search is to use your skill set, experience, and interests to craft a more focused search. Listed below are some of the job titles that can be found right now on major job searching platforms like LinkedIn and Indeed. Keep in mind that this list is by no means exhaustive.
Jobs in Cannabis Sales and Marketing
- Account Manager
- Marketing Coordinator
- Brand Ambassador
- Writer (applications, blogs, technical writing, copywriting, etc.)
- Social Media Manager
- Content Creator
- Human Resources Specialist
- Product Reviewer
- Packaging Associate
- Front Desk/Receptionist
- Project Manager
- Edibles Chef/Baker
- Customer Service Representative
- Graphic Designer
- Interior Designer
Jobs in Cannabis Science and Tech
- Analytical Chemist
- Lab technician
- Software Engineer
- IT Support Specialist
- Lab Assistant
Cannabis Law and Finance Jobs
- Tax Associate
- Regulatory/Licensing Associate
- Security Officer
- Compliance Coordinator
- Government Relations Associate
Attend Conferences or Local Events
Networking and building relationships are so important in any industry. In the cannabis industry, they are no less vital. We all know the statistic that most jobs don’t get posted.
The best way to find jobs that aren’t being advertised is to make connections with people in the industry, and what better way to make those connections than by attending large industry conferences like MJBizCon? If these big conferences aren’t really your speed, look into local networking events in your area. You can also try networking online through professional networking sites like LinkedIn.
Volunteer Your Time
If you really want to get experience explicitly relevant to the cannabis industry in order to spruce up your resume before your start applying, there are ways to achieve this! The easiest way forward would be to volunteer your time to an organization. Look into volunteering with local chapters of large-scale drug policy reform organizations like the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) or the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA). Do some research into advocacy or policy reform groups in your immediate area. These experiences will get you involved with cannabis in a meaningful way and allow you to network and meet people in the industry that live near you.
Apply, Apply, and Keep Applying
This is a great tip for anyone engaging in the job hunt. Try to commit to filling out at least two job applications a day, and be consistent. The job hunt is a long and arduous process, and you will need to get used to rejection, but don’t despair. Practice patience and persistence and results are sure to follow. Good luck, and happy hunting!