06
May / 2021

#008: Tackling The Cannabis Conundrum On Talent Acquisition – Hunter + Esquire

Building a business is tough. Building a business in the yet-to-be-defined cannabis economy is even tougher. One of the biggest conundrums in the cannabis industry is talent acquisition and culture clash between legacy cannabis purveyors and formalized business structure. In this episode, Fran Racioppi lights up the challenges and opportunities in this fast-moving industry. He’s joined by Bryan and Jessica Passman, Founders of Hunter + Esquire, a leading cannabis executive search and consulting firm, to discuss how cannabis companies recruit, assess, select, and retain top talent. They also highlight the barriers preventing elite talent from entering cannabis, the preconceived notions around the industry, the cultural challenges faced by operators, and the paths to success in the industry.

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Emerging markets and new industries offer trailblazers unique opportunities for fame and fortune. They also present significant risk fraught with unknown, and often not considered, challenges. The cannabis industry has proven to be no outlier and has taken front and center in national and international conversations about its legalization, benefits, and drawbacks. Like all industries, people are the most important factor in the success of a cannabis business.  Talent acquisition and people management lie at the center of the challenges with no roadmap by which to navigate.

Hunter + Esquire is a leading executive search and consulting firm focused solely on the cannabis and psychedelics industries. Founded in 2017 by the husband and wife team, Bryan and Jessica Passman, they provide a full-service, white-glove approach to every one of their clients. Their deep industry expertise, in combination with decades of talent acquisition experience and advisement, makes them an integral and trusted partner for cannabis and psychedelics companies looking to establish themselves as leaders in these burgeoning markets.

Together with Fran Racioppi, Bryan and Jessica guide us out of the cannabis conundrum on talent acquisition and the cultural divide in many companies. They discuss the significant competition for the elite talent required to put the right team together and the barriers that keep many people away from the industry. They also provide best practices to recruit, assess, select and retain top talent, as well as explain the dynamics behind an industry still illegal in many places.

Cannabis businesses are operating across the spectrum of company lifecycles; from launch, to rapid growth, to maturity and eventually into decline or relaunch. This conversation will break down how to assess the business, its place on the lifecycle continuum, and how to discuss paths to success with founders whose company may have grown past their expertise.

About Hunter + Esquire

TJP 8 | Talent AcquisitionHunter + Esquire is the leading executive search and consulting firm focussed solely on the Cannabis and Psychedelics Industries. Founded in 2017, their experienced team is dedicated to providing a full-service, white-glove approach to every one of our clients. Their deep industry expertise, in combination with decades of talent acquisition experience and advisement, makes them an integral and trusted partner for cannabis and psychedelics companies looking to establish themselves as leaders in these burgeoning markets.

Bryan Passman is the Co-founder and CEO of Hunter + Esquire.
Jessica Passman is the Co-founder, COO, and General Counsel of Hunter + Esquire.

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