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How To Find A Job In The Legal Cannabis Industry

By Ayanna Rutherford
Jul 25, 2018
A PotNetwork Special Report

Cannabis jobs are changing the economy. In fact, the cannabis industry is opening career doors for people across North America and around the world. As marijuana legalization efforts continue to expand, it is projected that by 2020 the cannabis industry will create more jobs than the manufacturing industry.

Job seekers are trying to crack the code on how to get hired to work in cannabis. People are usually surprised to find out that searching for a job in the cannabis industry is not too different from finding work elsewhere. Here are some tips to help you find a job in the cannabis sector:

[Read More: This Is Every State Where Weed Is Legal]

Cannabis Job Tip #1: Learn The Industry

Like any career, it is important to understand the cannabis industry so that you can find your passion. Many people come to the marijuana industry thinking that it is all about growing weed and selling it to consumers. However, that is just one part of the whole thing.

Like any industry, there is so much more to the business of cannabis. It is especially true as the cannabis market continues to expand and become more mainstream.  


Courtesy New Frontier Data

Cannabis Job Tip #2: Network With Your Local Cannabis Community

The best way to start is to learn about the activities in the cannabis industry happening in your own backyard. In states with mature markets where cannabis has been legal in some form for several years, finding groups to join can be rather easy.

In fact, a simple internet search should yield some groups that can provide you with information on the local cannabis community as well as career opportunities. In these established markets certain national groups may have local affiliates in your area to help you learn more about career opportunities. Some of these groups include:

Finding cannabis-related groups may be more challenging in communities without cannabis programs or with new and emerging cannabis laws. In most of these markets, there are typically advocacy groups who have been working to change state and local marijuana laws.

National marijuana (and hemp!) advocacy groups offer great information on state and local contacts in developing cannabis markets. Some examples of these groups include:

[Read More: All You Need To Know About Marijuana Penny Stocks]

Cannabis Job Tip #3: Attend a Cannabis Conference

Attending local, regional, and national cannabis conferences is also a great way to learn more about the industry. There are a plethora of cannabis conferences in the United States and around of the world. There are so many options when it comes to conference size and focus.

For example, for the past three years, Marijuana Business Daily has hosted one of the largest cannabis conferences in with world over 20,000 attendees. Large conferences have exhibit halls where attendees can learn about marijuana-related products and services. They also host networking events where you can build relationships with people in the industry.

Even if large conferences do not appeal to you there are groups who offer symposiums and smaller events dedicated to the industry.

Like any industry, it is important to network and meet people. As the old saying goes it’s not always what you know, it’s who you know.

Cannabis Job Tip #4: Leverage Your Existing Skills

Some of the best cannabis career success stories come from people who took their skills from more traditional fields and used them in the cannabis space. Businesses like the local nursery where you purchase soil and seeds to plant your home garden are now offering classes to individuals on how to grow cannabis.

Edibles have been another great entry point for people looking to start careers in cannabis which is why we are seeing chefs cashing in on the green rush. Some like Andrea Drummer, are finding success in the recreational marijuana market by catering cannabis-infused meals to high-end clientele. California based chef Monica Lo offers cannabis classes to consumers so they can learn to make edibles on their own. She also has a lifestyle website with delicious recipes.

Attorneys are also finding a home in cannabis. Lawyers are not just being used to deal with the criminal side of the industry, as marijuana companies and small businesses are using the legal community to climb into the business.

As more people pursue and receive licenses and permits to cultivate, process and sell marijuana, there must be processes and controls in place to maintain compliance. It is especially important in the United States where there is still a lot of legal wrangling going as State and Federal governments fight over cannabis legalization.

There is such a great need for legal work in the cannabis sector that there are law firms and groups who exclusively focus on cannabis-related law work.

Quick Advice: The Cannabis Industry Needs You

The great need for workers in the cannabis industry is not just limited to law. The cannabis industry needs people with every type of skill set including marketing, writing, technology, maintenance, and project management. You name it, the cannabis industry needs it.

The most important part about transferring your skills from another industry to cannabis is telling your story in your cover letter and resume. Show how your skills from your last job will work for a cannabis company. Fortunately, the cannabis industry is so new that most companies are looking for your general experience and skills, not necessarily your experience in cannabis.  

Cannabis Job Tip #5: Go To School To Study Weed

The emergence of a legal cannabis industry has led to colleges and universities across the country offering courses in cannabis. Students can receive credits in courses dedicated to growing marijuana.

In fact, you can major in marijuana at Northern Michigan University. Courses and majors like these may be worth pursuing if you are truly interested in working with cannabis —especially with the plant.

Cannabis Job Tip #6: Try Employment Search Engines

Now that you understand the cannabis industry and know the type of career you want to have, the next question most people ask is “where do I find cannabis jobs?” Surprisingly, finding a job in cannabis is very similar to finding any other job.

If you know the company you want to work for it is important to make contact with them to see what is available. You can also look on cannabis job search sites such as the following:

Another interesting resource in the industry are headhunters dedicated to filling roles specifically for cannabis companies.

Cannabis Job Tip #6: Check Out Job Fairs

Cannabis companies that are entering new communities often host job fairs to find locals to work in their businesses. In larger markets like Colorado and California, employment search firms host job fairs to connect local talent to work in new and existing cannabis businesses. Attending cannabis job fairs are another great way to get hired in the industry.

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