Out of the hurricane madness comes some light. We got a chance to travel a bit, and while we will be back next week with our holiday gift guide, I just had to share with you this amazing opportunity we had to get a sneak peek look behind the scenes at NuLeaf Las Vegas.
There is a new niche career on the rise thanks to the recent boom in the cannabis industry. Most of us have heard of “bartender,” but the relatively new profession of “budtender” is not as familiar to most. However, it’s a job that is becoming increasingly prevalent as more and more states continue to legalize recreational marijuana. So, just what does a budtender do? What are the qualifications for this job? And how can they help customers shopping for cannabis? We spoke with Broderick, budtender at NuLeaf Las Vegas, to find out a little bit more about this growing occupation.
What made you interested in becoming a budtender?
My interest in marijuana actually started from me being a medical cannabis patient myself. I was in a car accident that resulted in a pretty serious back injury and marijuana was the only thing that helped relieve the pain. Experiencing the positive effects myself made me curious to learn more.
What sort of training is required to become a budtender?
Product knowledge is definitely a big focus of the training process. With marijuana becoming more mainstream, there are so many products being introduced to meet the consumer demand. We have new items coming in just about every day. We do a lot of sampling with our vendors so that we can be familiar enough to be able to recommend the right product. We’re also trained in responsible consumption through our Americans For Safe Access program so that we can advise the right dosage to both our recreational and medicinal clients.
What goes into servicing a client?
Our customer service at NuLeaf is mainly educating clients on what products we have available. Some customers already have their preferences. They might like edibles, concentrates. We have a lot of travelers and first-time users from out of town who want to enhance their Vegas experience and prefer something they can easily use and dispose of. For those customers, I usually recommend something portable like a vape pen – which are actually some of our bestsellers.
What’s the most important type of education you offer new clients?
It’s very important for our new customers to know how to consume our products responsibly. New clients are usually most curious about edibles which look tempting, but can actually be extremely potent. We advise customers to start off with a small dosage (10mm or lower) in relation to their body weight and other factors. We also carry a product called UnDo. It’s two little capsules and all natural, but can reduce the psychoactive marijuana effects within 30 minutes. It’s a product I always recommend to customers who are buying edibles.
What are some of the perks of the job?
The management and staff here at NuLeaf provide a great work culture. Compared to other jobs I’ve had, this is by far, 100% the best job I’ve ever had. It’s also something I’m passionate about. It’s fulfilling for me to be able to help the customers find products that are going to help better their lives, whether it’s pain management, getting a better sleep at night, stress reduction, or just much-needed relaxation. I also really appreciate working with our vendors and the wealth of information they share with us – especially for me as a medicinal user. The free products and tester samples from them are always a plus. Our employee discount is another nice incentive. Overall this is just a great industry to work in.
What’s the biggest difference with servicing the recreational customer vs the medical customer?
Our medical customers tend to stick to what helps with their pain. They usually come in with their paperwork and prescriptions and know exactly what they want. Our recreational customers tend to be a little more adventurous. They want to know about the new products.
What’s the most challenging part of being a budtender?
Being accountable and being aware. We have new products coming in daily, so staying on top of the assortment of what’s available is important.
What was the reaction from your friends and family when you told them you were a budtender?
Mostly, they love it! I’m from Texas which is pretty conservative. There are some who don’t quite understand it. However, I have two family members who have cancer, so to be able to call them and share the information I’m learning with them is just a great feeling.
Have questions for Broderick? Comment and we will get his answers for you in a follow-up post!