Marijuana Business Magazine May-June 2020

Marijuana Business Magazine | May-June 2020 44 & Cannabis businesses from California to Massachusetts share steps they took to keep employees safe while providing consumers with products and services MOBILIZATION Brandon Wiegand, regional general manager, The Source, Las Vegas and Henderson, Nevada It’s not easy to raise a cavalry in a weekend, but that’s essentially what The Source did, thanks to prudent thinking, agility and responsive regulators. When Nevada Gov. Steven Sisolak asked nonessential businesses to voluntarily close March 17, a surge of customers descended on The Source’s two outlets—one recreational-medical store in Las Vegas and a medical-only dispensary in Henderson—on March 18. At the time, state marijuana businesses had not been declared essential. Rather than keeping the Las Vegas store open to recreational customers in anticipation of another surge—and another quick windfall—regional general manager Brandon Wiegand pared back services March 19 to exclusively serve medical patients. His reasoning? The move was a good way to reduce crowds and lower the safety risk to staff and patrons. It also gave him and his team an opportunity to slow down, assess the fast-moving situation and prepare for different scenarios they believed could unfold. “It gave our team time to catch a breather, get their feet under themselves, think through what are the policies, procedures and protocols that we need to adhere to. How do we bring those to market and implement them? How do we make sure our customers are adhering to those guidelines? So we took the day Thursday (March 19) to think through that and then redeployed Friday to open back up for recreational customers.” One scenario they prepared for—having seen it in other states—was closing retail store floors to customers and shifting to an all-delivery model. So, when the governor announced March 20 that marijuana stores would be able to service customers only through delivery, Wiegand was ready. The Source had already contracted Blackbird for delivery services before the pandemic, but Wiegand knew the Reno-based company alone wouldn’t be able to handle the anticipated number of delivery orders. Instead, he would have to raise his own delivery squadron. On the morning of March 20, a Friday, Wiegand solicited his staff for delivery-driver applications and got about 10 before the end of the day. He processed those and forwarded them to the Nevada Marijuana Enforcement Division, expecting to hear back the following Monday. Tales Takeaways By Omar Sacirbey from the Frontlines The Source lowered risk to customers and employees by offering delivery. Courtesy Photo Pandemic Pivot