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3 Lessons From a Year in the Cannabusiness

By Aaron Ray, CEO of STM Canna

At the time of this writing, I have spent over a year in the cannabis industry. My first experience came in February 2017, coinciding with the launch of Sesh Technologies Manufacturing. Since that launch, I have seen the company grow exponentially, making appearances at major cannabis events and releasing revolutionary products such as the STM RocketBox and STM Rosin Press.

And, while I’ve only spent a little over a year in the business of cannabis, there are three major lessons I’ve learned from my time in the industry:

Lesson #1: The Cannabis Workforce and Those Who They Serve aren’t From a Cheech and Chong Movie

There is an idea that people working with cannabis are lazy, apathetic, or “potheads.” Most anyone reading this publication knows that’s one hundred percent untrue.

It takes a lot of hard work, persistence, research, and business acumen to be successful in this industry. In the same way, the consumers don’t fit the stereotype. Doctors, lawyers, financial executives, entrepreneurs, these are people that use cannabis both recreationally or medicinally.

Lesson #2: It’s Vital to Learn How the Laws Apply to What You’re Doing

While the laws on cannabis are already complex enough for consumers, it gets even more complicated when you get into the business side. You’ll have to consider everything from where you’re operating to how you structure your company financially.

Lesson #3: There’s No Blueprint for Success

With recreational cannabis still so new, there’s no real established recipe for success despite it being such a booming industry. You can’t draw from studies in the Harvard Business Review – we’re writing the case study as we go. This will force you to take risks, try new things, and be creative. We are all failing our way forward.

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