n as little as four years, Oregrown — the cannabis dispensary turned lifestyle brand — has doubled its storefront, become its own Tumalo-based supplier and grown sizably in both community support and brand recognition. Its key to success? Unconditional belief in the staff.
"We think of ourselves as one big family — helping each and every one of our staff, professionally and personally....we value every member equally," says co-founder Aviv Hadar, who began the company in 2013 with Justin Crawn. "Oregrown prides itself on passion and talent — not necessarily college degrees."
Indeed, budtender Anna Stanton and assistant manager Aaron Pugh both rave about the inclusive culture, allowing for rapid career growth in a burgeoning industry. "If we have a creative idea, I 100 percent feel like I can share that idea with the owners," says Pugh.
"It's a very supportive culture," adds Stanton.
Being a supplier and distributer has its advantages, and Hadar says this vertical integration means Oregrown can be a longterm landing spot for people, "where entry level positions can turn into lifelong careers in the cannabis industry," he says. "Those that stick around enjoy being driven outside of their comfort zone and often surprise themselves with what they are capable of."
Stanton says she relishes working for a company that is, "all over the town we will live in. They're always sponsoring different events or supporting the community — art-wise and music-wise.... It's cool to see my boss really active in the community."C
hrissy Hadar, cofounder and Aviv's wife, says that's due to their push to destigmatize cannabis and reach out to parts of the community that might have negativity or fear toward their organization, to change their mindset.
"We approach and push cannabis as a lifestyle," Chrissy says. "A lot of our customers are really active in the outdoors, they're part of the community, they have families, and since Oregon is such a hub for activity and adventure, the two blend really well. Instead of just selling cannabis we are selling that lifestyle, that open-minded perspective."
Pugh says newbies and veteran consumers come to Oregrown because of its "top quality cannabis — some of the best in the state and stay for the knowledgeable, friendly and yes, patient budtenders, who are happy to answer any and all questions. A lot of our patients have their favorite budtender, something like having your favorite barista."
In addition, Chrissy Hadar understands the burden of being an employer in Central Oregon, where it can be tough to find affordable housing. "It's not lost on us. It drives us to do everything we can to take care of our staff...and we take that very seriously."
She reflects, "We treat our staff like our family and do our best to go above and beyond. I think that's what makes this such a special place to work."
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