The cannabis industry is booming in many states. The initial plan for your cannabis business served you well. A new year calls for some small updates to all you’ve set in motions. Plan to make 2020 your best business year yet, both personally and professionally. Consider these eight strategic suggestions to improve your cannabis business.

Delegate More 

Delegation is not a synonym for being lazy or passing off unwanted tasks. In a business, it is about efficiency and a method of a business owner’s commitment to valuing employees. Delegation allows you to hand over tasks to others whose skills are better aligned to accomplish that specific task. Relinquishing tasks and responsibilities may be difficult at first, but with time, it will get easier. Delegating certain tasks to software is also an option that can save business owners and employees time. Updating your POS integrations, streamlining your procurement, or setting up reliable seed-to-sale software with compliance integrations are all ways to save time on your business operations. Set up a pressure-free consultation if there are business operations you want to improve. 

Consider a contingent workforce 

Many cannabis businesses are using consultants, freelance, or independent contract workers to fill in the gaps. Because contingent workers do not receive salaries, this offers business owners a flexible option to complete certain projects within their budget.“One of the most interesting trends in HR that I see is the rise of the contingent workforce,” says Rob Mohr the Cannabis Guru from PeopleGuru says. “I am very interested to see how the cannabis industry will employ this type of labor and even more excited about how our clients can leverage PeopleGuru’s technology to manage a contingent workforce.” If you are interested in leveraging a contingent workforce during 2020, investigate how to make this easy with the right HR software

Upgrade Marketing

The cannabis industry has been restricted when it comes to marketing and advertising. Email marketing is one way around this challenge, but text message marketing is also cost-effective and more personal. Texting is the #1 form of mobile communication in the United States today. 99% of texts are opened and 90% of them within the first 3 minutes of being received. In 2020, consider incorporating text messages into your marketing strategy, especially for dispensaries. To find out more about text message marketing here

Continuing Education

Expanding your knowledge is a lifelong activity. To run a business, you probably learned to develop a business plan, recruit and train staff, and work within a budget. Education and training are also crucial for employee success in the cannabis industry. MJ Stapley, Founder of MJ Hybrid, knows a thing or two about training for dispensaries, brands, and all cannabis sales professionals.

She recommends staff training because there is a lot of consumer education that happens in the cannabis industry. “Having a trained front line staff on how to effectively communicate with consumers as well as guide and educate them on product knowledge is what will set your business apart and grow your sales.”

Another reason to invest in training your employees is that they are more engaged and work harder. Stapley says that “offering training and education to set [employees] up to be successful will keep [them] engaged, help keep turnover low and raise the customer experience which will also drive more sales.”

As MJ Stapley emphasizes, the cannabis industry is constantly changing so keeping yourself and staff up to date will ensure you remain competitive, compliant, and able to meet your customer needs through consistent development and accountability. 

Networking Via Professional Organizations

Meeting people face-to-face is a powerful business tool, and meeting the right people can help move your business forward. In the cannabis industry, people tend to be very friendly and helpful, which makes networking in our industry fun! In 2020, consider your local organizations, meetups, and conferences as a way to grow your business network. Consider what expertise you can offer to the community by becoming a referral source, offering sound business advice, or partnering with other businesses.   

Community Involvement 

When a cannabis business gives back to the community through volunteer actions it goes a long way. Johnathan McFarlane from Hybrid Marketing marketing thinks that giving back will be a trend in 2020. “I feel like we’re going to see a lot more cannabis businesses implementing CSR programs. It’s a great tool for PR, retention, and marketing. And of course, it’s always good to do good things! Because competition is heating up (or already has) in many markets, businesses are searching for any way to differentiate themselves from their competitors, and a robust CSR program is a great way to do it.” Consider how your organization could give back to the local community.  

Eliminate What Is Not Working

Business growth brings with it exponential complexity. Not every idea or product will be self-sustaining or profitable. Track your progress, and eliminate any product or service that is not showing a profit. 

Stay in Tune with Technology

Embrace automation. It is not unusual for small business owners to spend over 10 hours a week on tasks that can be automated. Look for customized solutions that will save your company both time and money. Discover, purchase and manage the best services and software for small businesses all in one place. CUE is always there to point you in the right direction.

As a cannabis business owner or manager, you are in a unique position. Have a great 2020!