• October 5, 2018

    Four Tips to Unleash the Creative Potential of Your Team

    Everyone has the potential to be creative. We all get sparks of imagination from time to time, but they’re usually sporadic, and sometimes wildly off-topic; so if you want your team to generate useful, problem-solving, creative ideas on-demand, try these four tips:

    1. Give everyone an ‘Idea Book’

    Your staff may already have great ideas — but if you don’t give them a process to share those ideas, they may stay hidden forever. An Idea Book is simply a book, to write ideas in (we recommend going the extra mile and branding it), however, it it just the first step, as it must be paired with a process for staff to submit ideas, a system to evaluate those ideas and a plan to implement and reward them when a great ideas is uncovered.

    2. Get Outside

    The best ideas don’t happen at a desk. There are too many distractions. To get ideas flowing you’re mind needs to wander a little — we recommend taking a walk in the park; cycling a trail — even hanging out at the dog park. Let your brain unplug, but keep something handy to write down ideas when inspiration strikes.

    3. Go Shopping

    Who doesn’t love stalking their competition? It’s natural to want to keep an eye on what they’re doing; but when your seeking original ideas, we recommend looking outside your industry for inspiration. Visiting an analogous business — one that has a comparable business model or size but is in a different industry, and viewing their operation from a customers’ perspective, can provide great insights into your own business. Be observant, search for details, and record your observations — what did you enjoy, what frustrated you, what made you smile.

    4. Introduce Flight Time

    Social media notifications, inbox pings and phone calls are all productivity destroyers and at worst, can crush creative ideas when their first sprouting. To combat the distractions, introduce a period of ‘flight time’ into the work day — a set period (one to two hours) with no phones, no emails and no social media, to allow distraction free work and thinking.

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  • September 23, 2018

    Is your Cannabis Brand Blazing, or is it Following the Herd?

    In most industries branding, packaging and marketing needs to speak to only one group – your potential customers. In the cannabis industry, however, to give your brand the best chance of success, you’ll need to engage with several non-customer groups too – all of which can have a significant impact on the industry and your success locally.

    Investors

    Yep, it’s expensive to enter this industry. This isn’t an industry where shoestring budgets are going do well. So getting investors on board with high quality pitch-decks, mock-ups and business plans can be crucial.

    Elected Officials 

    Councilors, state reps, mayors and county executives may all be allies or roadblocks in advancing the cannabis industry in your local area – so it can be a great advantage to learning how bills are introduced, how to lobby for your interests and put yourself in a position to be invited to advisory or steering groups.

    Local Government Employees 

    These are the guys who issue permits, manage inspections, check your processes and approve your licenses. In our experience they’re always overworked and under-appreciated – most government workers can’t accept gifts worth over $20, so small, useful, branded items can go a long way.

    Local Media

    Twitter is where you’ll find most local journalists thee days, and sending them a DM can be more effective than a press release. Providing hi-res images, B-roll footage, well-written bios and exclusive behind-the-scenes opportunities will increase your chances of being the company they call when they need a cannabis sound bite.

    Voters

    Of course, you can’t forget to engage your local community. Even if they never buy your products, their perception of your brand could help determine their decisions when cannabis votes come up.

    Your cannabis brand, therefore, serves a far greater purpose than simply selling product – it can have a positive impact on non-users too. Our top tips: avoid industry jargon, shift away from stoner cliches, educate and advocate for the benefits of cannabis and seek to get involved with impactful projects in your community.