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Summer is right around the corner, and many people are planning for it now. For some, summer means a restful vacation in warm, tropical locations. For others, it’s a time to take on a new side hustle and earn a little extra money with a part-time job. Summer is also a time to expand knowledge through summer school or vocational training and certification.

This summer might be a great time to explore the exciting career options available in the legal cannabis industry. The training and courses offered by respected and legitimate cannabis colleges like Cannabis Training University (CTU) will provide you with the means to gain the expertise necessary to succeed in the increasingly competitive cannabis job market. Numerous job options exist in the various sectors of this exciting and lucrative industry, so it makes sense to explore options in this emerging industry, which is poised for explosive growth and success. CTU’s legit program receives positive feedback on Reddit and other sites from its large alumni community. Cannabis careers are becoming more mainstream each year, and those with ambition are becoming increasingly aware of the unique opportunities available.

Deciding Your Career Path

When attending a cannabis school to start a 420 career, you will have a variety of options for the type of position you want to train for and eventually land. Some positions in the cannabis industry are more behind-the-scenes work in the production aspect of the industry, while dispensary work is very customer-service oriented.

You will have to consider which role will be best for you and your skill set. If you enjoy sales and interaction with the public, you may find that a budtender job at a dispensary is the most rewarding role for you. If you enjoy horticulture, tending crops, and the manual labor that goes along with it, a cultivation associate position might be the right fit. If you’re an accomplished baker, working for an edibles company might be your dream job. There is an ongoing need for all these positions.

Realistic Expectations and Teamwork

If you choose to pursue a career in cannabis, you must follow your dream with realistic expectations. To succeed in any job requires a lot of hard work. If you have a passion for cannabis, you will most likely excel in a cannabis industry job, as long as the allure of working around potent cannabis strains doesn’t interfere with the hard work necessary to make a valuable contribution to your team and facility.

No one in the cannabis industry works in a vacuum. Everyone works on a team and strives to accomplish team goals. This is true regardless of whether you work in a dispensary, cultivation facility, or a manufacturing company creating concentrates and edibles. Each of these positions requires a team attitude, and the old adage “There’s no ‘i’ in team” holds true. Attaining team goals requires working as a team, without exerting your own way of doing things. Deviation from established best practices is never a good idea in the cannabis industry, except in cases where accomplishing tasks can be done in a better way. In which case changes in policy and procedure will be documented and made available to the team, and everyone will be made aware of the change and why it helps production or efficiency. If you work in the cannabis industry, you will no doubt hear the word “compliance” mentioned repeatedly. This simple word refers to the need to obey and follow the established rules, regulations, practices, and procedures mandated by the legal marijuana industry—an industry that’s still evolving changing. Every legal cannabis state has a regulating body that establishes proper protocol for industry practices. Sometimes the requirements for medical cannabis differ a bit from those for recreational marijuana. Cannabis companies are obligated to follow these regulations, or they could face fines or closure. Compliant cannabis companies will inevitably create Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for a wide range of internal activities, from how to mix and administer nutrients to plants, to how to create shatter, to how to close out cash registers for the day or accept cannabis product deliveries into a dispensary.

For most companies, SOPs will be kept in both physical and digital formats to ensure everyone in the company has access to them. Many companies go beyond simply creating SOPs and also create Work Instructions (WIs) and Associated Documents (ADs) to supplement them. Everyone on a dispensary, cultivation, or marijuana-infused-product (MIP) team must follow these established procedures to the letter or face serious consequences, including possible termination. Many cannabis companies also develop whistle-blower procedures, where employees are encouraged to report colleagues who deviate from established procedures. Any movement of large quantities of cannabis product usually requires oversight, often from members of different departments who do not typically work together. Whistle-blower practices are strongly encouraged from employees if they observe any theft from other employees. In an industry where large quantities of marijuana and cash are received and transferred daily, diversion of this product or money is a huge concern.

People who aspire to work in the legal cannabis industry sometimes find it surprising that growing and selling marijuana—activities usually associated with a laid-back lifestyle—are so strictly regulated. While this is understandable, regulations are necessary to keep companies running smoothly and profitable. The industry is relatively new and continuously evolving. It remains controversial, although the tide has definitely turned in regard to the general public’s acceptance of cannabis and recognition of the vast medical potential of the plant—potential that’s not yet fully realized. The fact that marijuana is an intoxicant is another reason for thorough regulation. Like the liquor industry, the cannabis space requires thorough processes and procedures.

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Hard Work Pays Off

Those who pursue a cannabis career with realistic expectations and a clear understanding about the need for a strong work ethic face an exciting work experience that’s loaded with opportunities. Upward growth is almost a certainty for those who demonstrate commitment to the company’s success. Nothing happens immediately, of course, but hard work most definitely is recognized and rewarded, although it may not be soon enough for those who are impatient.

Let’s take a look at the three most likely facilities where cannabis employees are in demand: the dispensary, cultivation facility, and Marijuana-Infused Product (MIP) facilities where extraction and in many cases edibles production occurs.

Dispensary. A dispensary is where many people aspire to work when they consider job options in the legal cannabis industry. There is a steady demand for budtenders (aka “retail associates”), and this is a great role for someone who is a “people person” with good customer service and sales skills. Many dispensary managers started out as budtenders and were promoted from within. The general structure for dispensary staffs often several levels: budtenders, lead budtenders, assistant managers, and managers.

Cultivation Facilities. The practice of growing cannabis is fascinating and rewarding. There is a steady demand for skilled cultivation associates, and the number of job postings for these positions is second only to budtenders. A job as a cultivation associate is a great fit for someone who enjoys gardening and the physical work involved with tending plants. In addition to general cultivation associate positions, there are many specialized roles within cultivation facilities. Some of the more common ones are pest management specialists, harvest specialists, trimmers, drying/curing specialists, assistant managers, and managers.

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Marijuana Infused Products (MIP). Many MIP facilities have a number of exciting opportunities. Those who work at these facilities or for a company that owns one often refer to them as “mips,” for obvious reasons. A concentrates extraction technician is one of the most common positions. Safety procedures are extremely important in MIPs because there is are real risks of serious consequences if things go awry with the volatile substances often used for extraction. MIPs often include an edibles kitchen, where there are specialized roles in baking, beverages, and candy production. Some MIPs also have a pre-roll specialist onsite because a great deal of properly dried and cured product is sent to MIPs daily for processing. Packaging associates are also a common role, as are topicals associates who make a variety of infused lotions and creams. Assistant manager and manager roles also exist for those who advance from within and have a firm understanding of all aspects of MIP safety and production standards.

Final Thoughts

This summer may be the perfect time to set your sights on a better job in the cannabis industry. Enrolling in a cannabis university is an important first step toward learning essential information necessary for success in nearly any cannabis employment opportunity. Knowledge is power, and enrolling in a cannabis training program will put you ahead of your competition when it comes to landing a good job. Set yourself up for success and enroll today!

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