There are 29 states so far that have legalized the use of medical marijuana, 8 that have legalized recreational use.
The Marijuana Boom is bigger than ever, and companies in the industry have put their best foot forward in hopes of transitioning to a pro-cannabis country.
Women Grow, a cannabis community accelerator, was started in 2014 by Jane West in Denver, Colorado.
After Leah Heise stepped down in March 2017, Kristina Garcia was offered the position of CEO and she accepted.
Checking out several department roles, Kristina tried a little bit of everything, working in HR & Training, Technology, and Customer Support to help monitor and maintain the company growth.
“I take pride in helping the intelligent and self-motivated Women Grow team do their best work.”
Women Grow lives up to Kristina’s declaration. The company is notable for creating connections on a more personal level. A number of events are offered to the women who are a part of the Women Grow community, including the annual Women’s Summit.
The Women’s Leadership Summit is undoubtably inspired by the amount of women who share an attraction to the cannabis industry.
Every year, hundreds of cannabis industry business leaders come together to empower and connect with one another and share new ideas, inventions, and insights. Garcia credits the best part as the diversity of the crowd.
“It’s hard to pinpoint one highlight, but what I can say are the amazing people we met. Attendees came from near and far, traveling to Denver, CO. We had women from as far as London, England, Puerto Rico to Hawaii and beyond. These amazing women joined together for two days attended workshops and talks. It was incredible to watch the relationships forming. Our summit is often the entry way for newcomers entering the industry. It’s incredible to see the relationship forming and seeing these business leaders from year to year as they develop in their businesses.”
The most engagement comes from their Monthly Signature Meetings that take place on the first Thursday of every month, averaging about 80 attendees per event. She also emphasizes the importance of social media, and the engagement reached through it.
@Regrann from @damarijuanamomma – Who’s ready for another AMAZING @womengrow Phoenix Signature Networking Event!?! I know I am 🙋🏽🙋🏼🙋🏻 Check out the preview from last month’s event…it just keeps getting better!! This month we are introducing child care 👩👧👦 Get your tickets now for only $25 – link in bio 👆🏽 * * * #womengrow #womengrowphoenix #momforce #dvttesting #bakedbros ##chongschoice #420skincare #womenofcolor #womenofcannabis #villagevibes #girlpower #womenempowerment #raisingmytribe #cannaboss #cannaqueen #ganjagirls #weedporn #wonderwoman #quotestoliveby #cannabiscommunity #cannabisculture #leadership #momofinstagram #womenofweed #womenwhohustle #husslehard #workflow #legalizeit #powermovesonly #higherlearning
Kristina ties in success to personal connections. Through the events and opportunities offered at Women Grow, members find themselves entering trustworthy business relationships with the community around them.
She shares that through networking events, local social events, regional education symposiums, and national speaking circuits, aspiring and established professionals can connect with cannabis leaders.
It seems for women, the cannabis industry serves as a business hub. Kristina shares the two essential qualities that women in the industry possess:
“Women have unique qualities that benefit them being in the emerging industry. This industry relies on people who have the ability to plan for the unknown, organize a community and provide education. People everywhere are diving into this field because they are able to set the tone and make a change.”
That explains the amount of working mothers who are entering the business and making a killing doing so.
“The feedback we get often from women is how grateful they are for the connections they made at our meetings.”
For young women who are looking to get involved with the cannabis industry, Kristina offers the same advice she would to any young entrepreneur out there: Educate yourself.
“Do not limit your abilities and expect there will be challenging days in this industry. It is tough but stay committed.”
She suggests to attend relevant programs, events, and conferences. Check out the Women Grow Signature Networking meeting, and stay open to all possibilities.
“Like many of us, your interests may change, be open to pivot as you become more knowledgeable in this industry. Your current skillsets could very well be applied in the space.”
Still, a majority of the United States doesn’t have the freedom the select few do. Marijuana is still illegal in most of the country, but the good news is that shouldn’t stop someone who is interested in the business to be able to invest.
Researching and joining local cannabis groups, finding a training program, attending industry conferences, becoming more educated in the space and engage; these are the key ways Kristina suggests you can begin building your relationships.
“Follow the industry leaders on social media. Read the industry trade publications. And attend Women Grow Signature Networking Event near you!”
As with any new industry, challenges will always arise and need to be faced head on. Considering Women Grow is only a three-year company, you can be sure that they are dealing with the same amount of hustle and changes that any startup goes through.
It’s a great learning experience, as Kristina tells us on a happy note:
“I believe we have found a good pace and now on better footing. Our challenges have helped shape us. We are learning and growing more as a better business.”
Kristina talks about an education platform, an investment webinar with Viridian Capital Advisors, and a soon to be published report with New Frontier Data. “It will be the first piece of research focused on Diversity in Cannabis and will co-host a webinar discussing the findings,” says Kristina.
We’ll continue to watch Women Grow grow, as there’s plenty of new projects in store for the company.
It seems when you join Women Grow, you’re forced to step out into a local, communal comfort zone, which happens to also where you make your work connections.
“Our Leadership Summit is the largest gathering of women in the cannabis industry. Yes men are welcomed and attend our summit. We are proud of the meaningful connections and vital industry knowledge people walk away with after attending igniting drive for success in these business leaders.”
She even gave us a break down of what we can look forward to from the program.
“We’ve just completed a webinar series with Nine Point Strategies on HR and operations practices. Our 2018 Leadership Summit coming up February 1-2 in Denver, CO. The countdown has begun and we are super excited about our speakers and panels.
Well, we’re excited to watch this hub and community grow, and hope to hear plenty of member success stories in the future.