Marijuana Business Magazine August 2019

Marijuana Business Magazine | August 2019 12 E lixinol’s vice president of marketing and communi- cations, Chris Husong, is a branding and marketing expert with more than 20 years of experience in regulated industries such as telecom and finance. At Elixinol, Husong has applied those skills to the health and wellness space. He’s been with the global hemp and CBD oil brand since 2015. Husong shared his best team-building tips this year at the NoCo Hemp Expo in Denver. We pulled out some of his key takeaways: Teamwork Matters Working together in groups, we get a lot more absorption of information. We are a lot more effective. Things get done when we work in teams. When we start to do things solo, we get over it. We get overwhelmed. We slow down. We forget things. And it’s that team/group dynamic that I really started to concentrate on at Elixinol. Prioritize Connections Meet regularly: If we’re meeting regularly, it’s much harder to talk trash about co-workers. For us, our marketing and sales teams are run out of San Diego, (but) our entire operations team is here in Colorado—and at times that causes tension, right? It’s easy to think the sales team is just sitting on the beach all day long, while we’re working in -20 degree weather. Those are the types of things that people build in their mind when they don’t have face-to-face interaction. We use technology to help bridge those gaps. We use Skype, we use RingCentral, we use Teams, we use Microsoft 365 to connect everybody through chat. We use Slack—all these different tools to make sure that people are connected on a daily basis. Hire Leaders, Not Managers A leader is very much different than a manager. I have to create leaders, not managers. ... It is people who understand and develop their teammates, who will lead them on a daily basis, who make the biggest difference. If you’re just somebody pointing your team around and managing a schedule, you’re not inspiring anybody. You’re not going to go take that hill. You’re definitely going to work slower. Lunch is going to be a lot longer when we’re not working for a leader, and you’re working for a manager. Trust Those You Hire The most important part of this whole conversation is trusting who you hire. I’m very much a proponent of being quick to decide and trust my gut and slow to change my mind. I believe that you know immediately—within that first 35 seconds of talking to that person—if they’re going to be a good Chris Husong Elixinol marketing guru explains how connecting with employees can improve your business Editor’s note: Each month we ask a cannabis industry executive for business tips and advice, as well as insights from their own professional experiences. To suggest an executive for this page, email magazine@ . The Executive Page | Tips & Advice By Kristen Nichols Get to know your team. If you don’t know about the kids and the birthdays and anniversaries and the dogs of the people that are working for you, you’re going to be a very ineffective leader.” —Chris Husong vice president of marketing at Elixinol