THE CANNABIS OPERATIONS
LEARN. RELAX. DISPENSE.
extra mile to make each and every person’s visit pleasant and different from what they would get elsewhere. We truly try to make it an experience, opposed to being just another shop.
WHAT TYPE OF OPPORTUNITIES DO YOU SEE MOVING AHEAD? With how rapidly this industry is evolving, opportunities will continue to present themselves. A good opportunity for us once COVID settles down is a classroom-style education session with our customers. This is something we hope to do because we feel that helping educate the consumer will in return help our business. A better educated customer will know more about our products and feel more comfortable trying things they once never looked at.
WHAT’S TODAY’S CONSUMER LOOKING FOR?
TELL US WHAT MAKES YOUR BRAND SO UNIQUE?
Relief and convenience. No matter what the issue might be, the consumer wants some type of relief to help handle it. Everyone has their own goals or objectives when walking in, but they still want some relief from any barriers that might be holding them back from getting there. They want a convenient process for this and maybe even the product to be convenient for their lifestyle and usage.
The experience we provide. We go out of our way to help ensure our customers are happy and taken care of. We try to make our customers feel like they’re part of something special here at THC. I think this helps separate us from what their experiences might be elsewhere. Along with this, we give our customers the largest variety of products to choose from. Paired with professionalism and world-class service, you get a unique brand and destination.
ONE-ON-ONE WITH... Michael Mandera, GM, The Herbal Care Center
WHAT TRENDS ARE YOU SEEING/EXPECTING? With the pandemic and everything going on, we’ve definitely seen an increase in first-time users. Working from home has given people the opportunity to take on new hobbies and interests, one of which being cannabis. We expect the curiosity around this industry to continue to grow. As consumer knowledge and awareness grows, we see there being an increase in demand for products such as capsules, topicals and oils.
WHAT’S THE SECRET TO CREATING A “MUST VISIT” LOCATION IN TODAY’S COMPETITIVE LANDSCAPE? I don’t know if there’s necessarily a secret or set formula, rather having something that is attractive and approachable is one of the first steps toward creating a “must visit” location. Our big storefront on the busy corner of Western and Ogden definitely catches some eyes driving by. Once entering our building, you receive a warm welcome by our lobby and staff, and even more so in the showroom. Besides the physical space, creating an experience that is effortless for the customer from start to finish is key. We try to create an atmosphere that is fun, but professional, which makes everyone comfortable. Doing this contributes to an experience that you remember and appreciate.
What’s the most rewarding part of your job? The most rewarding part is sharing my knowledge of the amazing cannabis plant and seeing firsthand the relief it brings people. It has truly changed people’s lives and brought them relief they never thought was possible. Also, that I am blessed to work every day with my family and amazing staff.
Describe a typical day. No day is ever the same in the cannabis industry. Every day presents a new customer, new products, new challenges of getting customers through the door. Every week for me consists of keeping an eye on our various
COMMERCIAL CONSTRUCTION & RENOVATION — DECEMBER 2020
financials, managing the flow on our sales floor, ensuring our staff provides a world-class customer service experience, and making sure my staff and managers are supported in any way possible. In addition, the Illinois market is heavily regulated, so making sure we are compliant is key to continued success.
What was the best advice you ever received? My father continues to tell me, “There are three types of people in this world, those who make it happen, those who watch it happen, and those who ask, ‘What happened?’” Stay humble and grounded with your success. We continue to try and make
it happen for our customers and staff each and every day.
What’s the best thing a client ever said to you? It is humbling to hear when customers say we are the best dispensary they have been to. When customers feel comfortable shopping with us, we feel we are contributing to removing the stigma behind consuming cannabis. THC wants to create an experience rather than just a transaction.
How do you like to spend your down time? I enjoy working out, watching my favorite sports teams, and getting together with family on Sundays.