Puff, Puff, Passed Over: How to Bounce Back from Missing Out on a Cannabis Job
The most exciting industry in business right now has to be legal marijuana.
Cannabis companies are starting all over the country, with more and more being rolled out each year. Opportunities abound for hemp growers, medicinal marijuana professionals, cannabis digital marketers, edibles, and food scientist, lifestyle product creators… in terms of opportunities and careers, the possibilities are truly endless!
So this means everyone will get hired automatically, right?
Not so fast…
Unfortunately, you aren’t always offered the job you are applying or interviewing for.
But that’s ok.
An important thing to keep in mind during your cannabis job search is that it’s not personal.
It’s not about who you are as an individual, but whether you are the right employee for the company you’re applying to.
Straight up: companies are looking for the perfect balance between what their needs are vs. the employee talent available – and frankly, that might not be you at this time.
But don’t worry, because if you keep looking, you will find your dream job working in cannabis.
To help you dust yourself off after hearing “no”, here are some strategies for becoming a more attractive candidate to cannabis companies:
Update & Tailor Your Resume for the Cannabis Industry
Your résumé is still the best resource you have to help you in your quest to get hired.
While you might not have any experience working for a cannabis company, given that it’s such a young and growing industry, focus on transferable skills that may be relevant.
It’s up to you to sell yourself to the company looking to hire; focus on what you can do for them by showcasing what you have done for others, and tailor your résumé to the position and company you are applying for.
Frequent Cannabis Industry Job Boards!
Many job boards and talent sites are not willing to work with the legal marijuana industry just yet.
Reasons for this are numerous, from decades old positions to wariness of legalities.
But technology is your friend here!
Bookmark every job board you can find – cannabis or not – and set up your profile with a particular focus on your strengths and job experiences. Then, set up keywords for the position you are looking for plus variations on “cannabis,” “marijuana,” “recreational,” etc.
Also, have automated emails sent to you when new positions are posted, with your résumé, references, and cover letter ready to be attached. Doing this will get you ahead of other cannabis job seekers, and the positive feeling of having new opportunities to respond to every day will keep you motivated during your job search.
When all else fails, relocation ahead of accepting a position might be needed.
Very few states right now have legalized marijuana and the Federal Government hasn’t changed their position yet. A relocation ahead of a job offer will show companies that you are serious about working in the cannabis industry and that you would be a less-costly hire.
Remember that you are valuable, and extend that value to others!
Establish your voice in the cannabis community. Write for cannabis-themed websites (or your own website!), create YouTube videos displaying your passion, volunteer for cannabis non-profit organizations, network among similar professionals, be a part of street teams, promote your own favorite marijuana products and companies professionally on your own social media (being sure to follow all regional laws), and keep studying and honing your unique skills. Demonstrate your knowledge of the challenges and triumphs marijuana is facing.
This doesn’t mean embracing 420, “stoner,” or slacker culture: it means understanding the expanding markets and unique dynamics future employers may have.
Don’t give up! Working in the cannabis industry has its challenges but can be extremely rewarding. You are literally helping change the world and improving the lives of thousands.
There is a position out there for you – just take the necessary steps to transform yourself into the best candidate for it, and the job will be yours.
Stuart Blessman is a 13+ year digital marketing strategist and content creator breaking into the cannabis industry. One of Kush Job’s beta testers, he’s interested in the product strategy and development of recreational and medicinal marijuana and the marketing and content strategy behind them. He can be found online at @st_u2.