Public acceptance of cannabis may be growing exponentially, but it’s unlikely we’ll see the same sentiment make its way in to human resource departments outside of the cannabis industry. Whether you use cannabis doesn’t matter, its mere presence on a resume can be enough to raise concern that you could be a liability to the company — an instant deterrent of your candidacy.
So, what do you do? Should you exclude your work experience in the cannabis industry in your employment history?
I recently spoke with a job recruiter I’ve known for many years and asked that very question. Her advice was pretty cut and dry – if there are no transferable skills acquired while working with cannabis, it’s probably just best to leave it off and avoid the potential of it negatively and unfairly impacting your chances of pursuing the career of your dreams. I also posted this question on social media, and the majority of former cannabis employees shared the same opinion.
Essentially, putting cannabis work on a resume submitted to, for instance, a financial firm, is like showing up to an interview with a face tattoo — you may be discriminated against.
One last aspect to consider if changing career paths are the average wages paid to cannabis industry employees. The most-prominent positions available are budtenders, cultivation workers and trimmers. Don’t expect to be rolling in money, as budtenders and cultivators tend to start around the same pay – between $15 and $16 per hour. As for trimmers, a job which I consider to be the most tedious and damaging on your body, they tend to earn the lowest at about $13 per hour.
Sure, the cannabis industry is pulling in billions, and someone is getting rich — the large multistate corporations and few else. So, before allowing grandiose visions of a utopian workplace where the sky is the only limit to success and advancement fills your imagination, slow down for a minute and consider the big picture rather than act on your impulse.