Full disclosure: David Belsky is a personal friend (don’t hold it against him) and his company, FlowerHire, is a firm client. He is also one of the foremost authorities on placing talent in the regulated cannabis and hemp industries. Earlier this week, Forbes posted a great interview with Belsky that we highly recommend.
Of particular note is Belsky’s insight into the qualities and characteristics that make someone a good fit for the cannabis industry. The first characteristic he identified is a love of the cannabis plant and an appreciation of how it can help people. Second, candidates should ideally be comfortable working in a startup-like environment, but also have experience with hyper growth. Accordingly, he looks for candidates who have (i) backgrounds as entrepreneurs, consultants, or turnaround specialists; (ii) worked in startups; (iii) been part of a massive scaling phase for a fast-growing organization; or (iv) done turnarounds. Third, Belsky said, “[A] good hire in this industry is someone who can appreciate and feels fortunate to be involved in such a pivotal time in history, and to be at the foundation of what will be a $50 billion-plus global industry that could make the world a better place.” Those three characteristics make up what Belsky calls the “DNA” of a good cannabis hire.
Belsky also remarked that, despite the rising level of unemployment across the country, the cannabis industry is not slowing down and that FlowerHire is as busy as ever. According to Belsky, “It seemed like there was no slow down in demand for frontline workers in retail, processing and cultivation facilities, as this industry was deemed essential early and with that came increased demand for products.” His experience adds further support to a blog post we wrote last month about the cannabis industry continuing to hire despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
Please check out our blog for continued updates on developments affecting the cannabis industry, as well as episode 8 of the Joint Status Report if you’d like to hear our interview from last fall with David Belsky. It might be our most popular episode to date!