With the rising popularity of alternative medicine, and so is Kratom.
Dafna Revah is the co-founder and vice president of CBD Kratom. She is responsible for the company’s 31 retail stores, online shops, and wholesale brands nationwide. Her experience and leadership have been focused on company growth, outstanding customer service, and executing profitable business solutions in this incredible industry.
In today’s episode, Dafna talks about Kratom’s health benefits and how they’re sourcing and vetting their products. She also shares their training program to keep their employees informed about the constantly changing Kratom and cannabis industry.
Nothing ever perfectly aligns, you kind of have to push it yourself. – Dafna Revah
Some Topics We Discussed Include
2:47 – Why they decided to open a CBD Kratom Shop?
7:40 – How to keep up with the fast-changing industry
16:06 – Why she highly recommends visiting the store
22:12 – How they are vetting the products that they bring to their store
29:24 – What are the general challenges they are facing as both online and brick and mortar store.
38:47 – Words of wisdom
46:59 – What are the challenges as a woman in a position like hers
People Mentioned / Resources
Connect with Dafna Revah
Connect with Sonia Gomez
Sonia Gomez: Hey guys, Sonia Gomez here coming to you from Denver, Colorado. Super excited to be here on another episode of The Hemp Revolution Podcast. It is our mission here to share and tell the stories of the incredible entrepreneurs who are pushing this industry forward on your behalf. It is all about having the absolute best products on the marketplace available to people just like yourselves so that you can truly experience the transformation that is possible through Mother Nature’s medicines.
If you are looking for products you can trust to deliver the results you’re looking for. Check us out on medicalsecrets.com and if you are a budding entrepreneur looking for those little tips and tricks, resources and relationships that you need to grow or a breakthrough that inevitable glass ceiling that you are hitting if you are a part of this incredible movement, go ahead and check us out on the Emerald circle.com. Super excited to be available to help you out.
In today’s episode, we are going to be meeting with yet another boss babe in the industry. This cannapreneur or kratompreneur is the Vice President and co-owner of the CBD Kratom. Dafna Revah is responsible for the nationwide operations of the company’s 31 retail stores, online shops, and wholesale brands. Her experience and leadership have been focused on company growth, outstanding customer service, and executing profitable business solutions in this incredible industry and might I just say as a woman CEO, super excited and very honored to have you on today, Dafna, what’s going on?
Dafna Revah: Not much. Thank you for inviting me to be on today.
Sonia Gomez: Oh my gosh, I’m so honored to have you on can’t wait to hear your story. I was just explaining to you that although I’m doing some marketing and some promotions for Kratom, and I’ve heard tons of transformational stories. I hardly know much about it. So I’m really excited to pick your brain. But before we do any of that stuff, would you mind sharing with us a little bit about who you are, what your background is, and how you got involved in this industry?
From a Traditional Head Shop Into a CBD Kratom Shop
Dafna Revah: Definitely. So I am the co-owner of CBD Kratom shops. I co-own the business with my husband, David. And we have shops in St. Louis, Missouri; Dallas, Texas; Houston, Texas; and Chicago, Illinois. So we do have 31 locations and we’re still growing. We also are growing a wholesale department and products as well.
So we’re always working a lot. I started because my husband opened his first store in 2013. And I had done other jobs before this that I had loved so much, but we really saw growth in the CBD Kratom business and we decided to open the first store dedicated to CBD and Kratom in 2016 in Bucktown, Chicago, so it’s kind of been a wild ride since then, as you know, so many things have been changing. They’re always changing.
Just this morning, we’re like what’s going on with this part of the business? So I think, for me, I have always really loved that it’s changing. I think change is hard, but kind of being in this business and even in any budding industry, you see changes happening so fast and it’s challenging, but it’s also fun to know that not necessarily what you’re doing today is what you’re going to be doing in three months.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah, You got into this because of your husband but what were you doing before Kratom and CBD craze.
Dafna Revah: Right. So really, he opened up a traditional head shop type store in 2013. And, you know, he kind of started going to trade shows in 2014 and started caring CBD and both kratom and started just being totally different individuals coming to shop at the store. CBD really appeals to so many individuals who have someone who unfortunately had an injury at a younger age in their 20s up to someone like my grandma’s best friend and you know they’re 85.
So you see that it’s kind of just a different ethos in those types of stores. So, we decided we just kept going that and as our stores grew we had one shelf was suiting credo, and then you know, five, and then it became half the store.
So I was at actually the Louis Business Journal in 2016. And we were like, we really want to take this. We know what we can do with this store. It really shouldn’t be in a traditional head shop. Not that we obviously have nothing against traditional head shops at all. It’s just a different feel when you walk into a store and you really want to do what your customers are looking for?
So we decided to open up the shop in Bucktown, Chicago. We decided to open up in Chicago because it was honestly, the biggest city near St. Louis. We’re like, Where should we go? So now I kind of regret that in the wintertime, it’s not so fun to go up there. But that really kind of started what we’re doing.
So, I was working my full-time job at the Business Journal Monday through Friday nine to five, and then I would go home and help him with things or spend all weekend in Chicago with him working on the store. So it kind of became this tipping point where I was like, I’m either gonna work 24/7 or I gotta choose this family business. So that’s kind of the direction that I went in. I loved my other their positions, I learned so much from them. A lot of it was marketing setting that really helped us as well as like, how we can market ourselves to be different.
Sonia Gomez: Yes, that’s such a huge key. And I think a lot of companies have hit that as a pretty significant roadblock for their growth. Obviously, with the changing times of the industry, that is not priority number one for [laughter]. And compliance is a little bit higher on the totem pole, right? Yeah, I stand. Yeah, I’m sure you do. So but let me hear a little bit about what sets your guyses store apart. Now. I love that it evolved from the traditional sort of head shop feel into what it is now– share with me a little bit about the key differentiators in your business.
Importance of Educating Employees
Dafna Revah: So our biggest thing is our experience in the store. So we have people that shop with us online. We have a more Great online presence. But really what we want is people to visit us in the store if they can. So we actually just had a training summit in our office. So we have a group of training managers in each city that train all the employees. So you don’t get a stay with us if you can’t pass the training, it generally takes about four weeks to do so.
And I think that’s very important because we want to know that if you go to our store in Houston, Texas, and have a great experience, you’re gonna go to our store in Chicago and have that same experience. So those some of the stores may look different, you know, size and the city so you know, you have different things going on. We want to make sure that the information you’re getting and the quality experience that you have is the same in each location. So I think that’s the biggest thing that sets us apart.
Because like you said, things are changing so much fast that it’s often hard to keep up and you got to keep it in compliance and do the correct packaging. And even, you know, if, you know, I don’t necessarily have as many regulations as, like a THC product, we start trying to follow those same guidelines because we feel like they’re coming down the pipeline sort of thing.
And if they’re good for a THC product, why wouldn’t they be good for a CBD product? So we have all those things in the back end. But that’s why we really have this core group of like training managers and good general managers, and just consistent efforts to make sure our training is on point.
And honestly, we always train people. If you don’t know the answer. Let them know you don’t know the answer, but we will get them the answer. So, often, I feel like people don’t want to find the answer for someone else and I don’t like that strategy. I think that if we don’t know the answer, we should try to find the answer and let that customer know why we didn’t know the answer and what we can do to help.
So, you know, just recently I was driving in my car, and I got a call from one of my shops. It was just a random time. I was like, why are they calling me and the person on the other line was like, Hi, this is blah, blah, blah from CBD Kratom. I’m just giving you a callback. I found the thing you’re looking for. And I was like, Oh, I was like, you’re calling the off [unintenligible] I was like, I can get their number and she’s like, Oh, I did. I hit redial instead of this other one.
So it was just nice to know that they really do call people back.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah.
Dafna Revah: It helped them and let them know that like, Hey, we found this answer for you. So I think, you know, even if you don’t have a chance to visit our store, you can see that by just calling our store, even the people who shop with us online, we have a really good online associate who, I mean she spends all day like fielding calls and stuff and so it’s just nice to know sometimes if there’s just someone else on the other side that’s trying to help you.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah, absolutely. I love that and that’s that that’s like really at the core. What made local business local business so successful to start with and why so many people are advocating for that and trying to move back to that, you know, creating that community type environment. I think with anything for a long time as Commerce has been growing in the community and big box stores are coming in we’re losing a lot of that can meet that that feeling of familial or familiar community, right?
So having stores like yours being open and available to offer that added support and connection is amazing. Obviously, running a shop like yours is not rainbows and sunshine and I want to get into the challenges that are inhabited. as being a part of this industry, but for the listeners who don’t know much about kratom, CBD obviously is this huge craze and even that is in its infancy. But creative is really creeping into the mainstream right now. Can you give us the quick and dirty, what is kratom? And how the heck is being used and why is it getting to be so popular?
Things to Know About Kratom
Dafna Revah: So kratom is a plant from Southeast Asia. It was used for thousands of years there. It really came to be popular after the Vietnam War, because individuals who had been over in Vietnam had seen locals using this plant called kratom. So it’s essentially just the leaf of a tree. And then farmers will take those leaves and then dry them and then grind them up into a powder essentially, oftentimes people describe it as smelling like matcha tea, something like that. It’s pretty bitter. So the kratom is part of the coffee family. So it’s going to be very bitter.
And traditionally, it was used for pain relief or energy. So most people you see, as you can probably see from our shores, we’re open from 8 am to 10 pm. So when we have our first hour of customers, it’s going to be a lot of those looking for kratom. We have a lot of people who use it before they work out or before their day work kind of as a replacement for coffee. Because it does have those pain-relieving qualities as well. It’s kind of more appealing to those who want energy but also may have, you know, some pain or something. So they’ll do that.
I think the reason now you’re seeing it a lot is that there has been controversy around it. I won’t shy away from that. I think it’s important for people to always consult with their medical professional about everything, whether it be CBD or kratom, especially if they’re taking other prescription medications or specific ailments. I think that’s always really important.
But we’ve seen a lot of individuals interested in kratom because they don’t necessarily want to use traditional medicine, whether it be prescription or not. So we often get a lot of people in the store who are like, you know, I’ve been looking for a kind of alternative. I have this excruciating pain because I was in a car accident, or because I’ve been doing construction for 30 years. And you know, I don’t want to necessarily have to go see a doctor for this. I want to try something alternative.
So I think, as alternatives have risen in popularity, kratom has risen as well. So mainly, you’ll see people who are taking it for pain relief or who want energy, there’s some that just give you energy just like coffee. Most people take it in just that regular pure powder form. You take about a teaspoon, so a lot of people would just put it into the water and drink it or put it into any other type of drink or like a protein shake. You’ll see a lot of people do that.
Since it is very, very bitter. Like I think it’s very bitter. I would suggest using it in the gelatin capsules, it’s just an easier way to take it so that you don’t have to taste it. So that’s mainly what we sell in our stores. It’s just pure kratom either in powdered form or in the capsules. You’ll see some other things here and there. We have some pretty popular kratom taffy. I think that’s just like a fun way to take in if you get tired of taking the powder everyday sort of thing. But most So you’ll see it just in that pure powder form. It’s kind of just like protein powder.
Sonia Gomez: And are you sourcing it directly out of Southeast Asia right now?
Dafna Revah: So we do. I know a lot of people do as well. I think a lot of things we run into is people being like, I can just buy this myself. And that’s true. They could source it themselves, but you don’t know the quality. You don’t know if it’s tested. And, unfortunately, because it is in a different area of the world, a lot of times people have been, honestly scammed out of their money by purchasing this product.
So we oftentimes have customers coming in, they’re like, well, I bought some off of the internet, but it hasn’t arrived. So I’m just gonna get some here. And that’s honestly how we met some of our customers because they haven’t been able to find a reliable vendor. So they come into our store and they’re like, you know, maybe convenience buying online or something like that. So they did it. And then they come to our store and they’re like, wow, like, I didn’t know all of this about kratom, I’m gonna come back.
So it’s really interesting to see that because I think just, you know, retail wide, so many things have moved online. And then you see really how people especially for a wellness product like CBD or kratom. They’re like, well, I kind of still want the information. So I’m gonna go store.
So it’s kind of been like, not necessarily opposite because I still see a lot of it sold online, we still have a good online presence. But I think back to that, you know, in-store experience, there’s kind of nothing like having that, you know, you kind of I always tell people who call us I’m like, you know what, just visit the store once and then you can order online. You definitely want to visit it so you know what you want and you just have more information to make a choice about what you’re purchasing at the store.
Sonia Gomez: I couldn’t agree more. You know, here’s what I know about people, especially in this industry, Cannabis, hemp, kratom all the same to me. It’s a relationship business. And at the same time, people always want to be the one to get it for a better price, right?
Dafna Revah: Yeah. Right.
Sonia Gomez: And they’re going to go out and they’re going to try and find like, get directly to the source or whatever. They feel like, you know, somebody who’s running a business, retailing or product is “ripping them off.” And here’s my thing is that, go for it. Do what I have done. Find who I have found, but I’ll see you in five years. Enjoy yourself.
Dafna Revah: I think you and I have this same mentality about that, you know, so we have those customers who price everything and sometimes I tell our employees we can’t just win that because I don’t want to sell something that I don’t think is a good product.
Sonia Gomez: Yes.
Dafna Revah: And that’s what I’ve run into. And I understand that you can see stuff on the internet for $10 for this 200 milligram CBD oil. And I’m like, it’s simply impossible. It’s very hard for me to believe that that’s good quality. So, that’s a great example of someone that you want everyone to be welcome and everyone is welcome to our store. But sometimes you can’t meet what someone is looking for. If they’re just there to get a good price and don’t care about the quality of the product. We’re probably not the right store for them because we only want to carry good quality products.
Sonia Gomez: Absolutely. I run into the same thing when I’m doing even services for marketing or whatever because I work in a supportive role to help companies get more exposure, generate online sales consistent [cross talk] so forth. And there’s always that one person who comes back and is like, well, somebody is offering it to me for this. And I’m like, go for it.
Dafna Revah: Yeah.
Sonia Gomez: Like I have no objection. As a matter of fact, I invite you to go.
Dafna Revah: [cross talk] Actually we made some of those mistakes. Yeah. Yeah, I really wish you’d gone with that other one.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah exactly.
Dafna Revah: I know how it goes. You got to sometimes you just got to learn from experience and it sucks. But sometimes you just got to be like next time I’ll know better. You know
Sonia Gomez: Exactly. And that’s everybody’s, I mean, I’ve gone through it myself. I’m super budget-conscious to like I like I’m a very fair business person. And at the same time, like, price is not going to be the reason why somebody comes to me. why somebody comes to me is because I have proven results working with a specific set of products in a specific industry.
And for those of you who are listening, that term that entrepreneurs will use for this is the riches are in the niches. We work really super hard to make sure that we understand what we’re selling and to whom we’re selling, and that the results we’re promising are actually delivered. And so that’s not true for everybody. And that’s okay. You know, so when somebody comes to us, and sounds like a very similar experience in your store, it’s going to be because they’re willing and more committed to getting the results than they are saving that extra $2 or $3.
Dafna Revah: Right. Exactly. Yeah. You have to learn it yourself. You know, no matter what someone tells you, you’re like, Okay, I just need to do it myself. And then you’ll know.
Sonia Gomez: Yep, absolutely. I see. I’ve definitely been watching the kratom craze. I’m super interested to see how it’s integrating with CBD. I’m curious to know, what are your criteria when you’re bringing products into the store? And do you offer many different brands? Or are they you’re telling me a little bit about that landscape and how you’re vetting products, bringing them into your store?
How They’re Vetting Their Products
Dafna Revah: Yeah, so it’s a mixture. Well, for everything, actually, we have to see lab results. And then we also conduct our own lab results. So I think that’s a big thing as well, that you always want to do because you always want to be sure what you’re selling is good. And then we also have a really great buyer. And you kind of have to let them do their thing and go to as many trade shows and see what’s out there because since both industries and all this It’s so fast-moving, there’s so much that comes out.
I remember when CBD Water came out and not to knock it or anything but everyone talks about everyone wanted it and all this and we were like, what like, what what do we pick this and that and like, so we have one but it’s definitely not our best selling item. And that’s because people who shop with this are not the ones you know, jumping necessarily on the current CBD craze.
They’re the ones who are really sticking with it for the health benefits because it really helps them so for us, I think we always get a lot of solicitations for like the newest coolest product, which is really cool and sometimes really great and sometimes works really well in like a boutique shop. But for us, it doesn’t necessarily work well because we’re always we have a very strong customer base that is looking for quality products that they really see strong effects from the right.
so it’s You know, it wouldn’t be our number one suggestion to, to recommend someone to drink a CBD water every day, it’s just not going to be the smartest decision for them, you know, unless they have unlimited funds, you know, it’s not gonna work out well for them. So for us, it’s really important that we always when we’re buying products and sourcing all these products that we’re always remembering, okay, well, who is that customer? Because, you know, that maybe the coolest CBD product I’ve ever seen. But are our customers really going to buy it? The answer might be no, which has happened to us in the past.
So we have a mix of different brands. We’re always looking for good brands out there. You know, there’s like some main originals that we’ve had. You know, we have like one product from like, they’re the original brands who are carrying, you know, like four years ago still in the shop and that’s really cool. You know, we’ve also started to work straight with, like, processors and farmers because it kind of, we kind of outgrew a lot of our suppliers, which was really hard for us about like a year and a half ago that we were like, Hey, you know, we need to supply about 20 stores and they were like, well, we can ship you 50 of this item. And we’re like, we can’t take just 50 you know, we need 500. So that kind of just pushed us in the direction of meeting with people. And we worked through some of the major brands that we knew to find these people.
So our buyer really works with them now to source products and what’s the newest coolest thing? We’ve worked with some individuals like we’re working on some partnerships now that I’m really excited about that, you know, outside of like the cannabis or kratom industry and they’re an expert in their own industry and we’re working on you know, making a product together, just sourcing high-quality CBD. So that’s kind of the direction we’re going in now. And again, the biggest thing for us, you know, when we’re buying, I mean, we have a full-time buyer, you know, and he, you know, he needs an assistant now and all of this and he has a whole team and all that. So it definitely takes a lot. But the main thing for us is, is it good quality? And can we prove that? And then is it something that our customers want to buy?
Because I think it is like such this and it’s so great that it’s so mainstream now because it makes some things easier. But then when we’re looking at quality, the market has kind of flooded and we’re like, well, we can’t try every product. You know, we get things sent left in mind and I’m like, I can’t test every product and try every product. So we really got to go with Okay, what are customers looking for? So we always keep in touch with our staff to know what the customers are looking for. And really Just looking at what we sell the most like really that good quality. Things like lotions and oils are going to be our top sellers not necessarily the prettiest thing out there right now. So that was really interesting for us. I
Sonia Gomez: love that absolutely loves that. Would you would it be fair to say that you’re seeing the traditional topicals and tinctures still among the best sellers?
Dafna Revah: Yeah, for sure. I think that that’s what people feel comfortable trying also to remember like for a lot of people, they’re not like well versed in the cannabis industry and they don’t want something that feels off-putting to them in any way. So those are still by far our most popular items. And then, of course, you have things like hemp flower and edibles and those are so enticing and people love those, but really, you know, for our customers who use it you know daily things like that they’re often with you know topicals and oils they’re not going to necessarily want to do the CBD water every day.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah. Yeah, the fad products I totally
Dafna Revah: Yeah, exactly.
Sonia Gomez: I totally, you know, eventually this is just going to be another ingredient and I think that the industry is a little bit too immature to just turn it into an ingredient. I think, you know, for now, the educational focus is really to help people understand the efficacy of using plant medicines like cannabis Sativa, which is aka hemp or kratom or anything like that.
And I think in maybe two years we’ll start to see the craze or ingredient movement happen but right now, mainstream science is just starting to unearth, all of these different incredible uses for plants and we got to give the consumer some time to catch up with what we are discovering as business owners.
Share with me for the people who are listening, what are some of the key challenges, I mean, you’re doing two things right now. You’re running a brick and mortar business and you’re running an online store.
Challenges of Online and a Brick and Mortar Businesses
Dafna Revah: Yes.
Sonia Gomez: Each comes with its own set of challenges. This whole compliance thing certain is certainly presented, it is new, you know, reared a new dragon’s head. But in general, what were some of the challenges that you did face or are facing right now as an e-commerce and physical location store?
Dafna Revah: Right. So I think the same almost as every industry, there’s always the talk that like, why are you doing retail? What’s the point of this? And why aren’t you just doing online? And everyone can do online, right. So, I think the idea of why we did both brick and mortar and online is because we didn’t want to limit ourselves.
With brick and mortar, you have a ton of problems just by having a store, you know anything, you have to do a whole lease, you have a whole landlord, every landlord is different. Every lease is different. You know, you have to take care of this space, you have to pay for everything around it. You know, so that I think just by having a store, you have all of those issues that can happen
Sonia Gomez: That is capital intensive.
Dafna Revah: Yeah. So I think that’s what’s hard with brick and mortar, which is why I see everyone going online. And then what you lose online is that Yeah, pretty much everyone can make an online website. And I think that you know, up until now, you couldn’t really advertise CBD or kratom. So how are you going to advertise your website? If you didn’t have any stores feeding into the website?
So I think you have you know, for anyone thinking of like, Do I want stores do I want a website? You almost have to think like, well, what are you trying to do? You know, we were trying to reach people and to reach people outside of, you know, the traditional hedge shop and be like, these are products that we believe would benefit you and that you’re probably looking for, but literally don’t know where to go or have nowhere to go.
So that’s what we tried to do. And I think for a lot of our people, it is easier to shop online. And then we have people who have ailments and we have people who, you know, do use things to CES to walk things like that. So it’s just easier to order from home if they know what they want. And that’s why we do work on everyone. You know, having phone etiquette and getting back, you know, to people’s questions, things like that. So I think you just outside of like the cannabis industry, you have all the issues of a regular website of a regular brick and mortar. But being inside the cannabis industry you also have the problems that compliance is crazy. Some people say it’s this Some people say it’s that some people are doing this because they believe in five years gonna be that and then the other half is doing this other thing and no one can really tell you an answer. And you just have to make your own decision.
So I think that’s kind of like the hardest part is a lot of times, you have so many conflicting things going on, and people telling you one thing, and then the next person telling you the other thing. So I think it’s always important to listen to what these people say but then to continue doing what works like it worked for us to open stores, and I’m sure if I would have pulled 100 people 50 would have said, Don’t open more stores, retail is dying. And I’m sure the other 50 would have been like that’s a great idea. You should open more stores.
I think it's always important to listen to what these people say but then to continue doing what works. - Dafna Revah Click To Tweet
And I think that by being in any business, you always have to be like okay, well what’s my Working What’s going on? So like, if our website wasn’t doing well, I would be like, we got to figure out something, you know. So I think that’s what you always have to be doing. You have to always be looking and be like, well, what’s working and what’s not working and why and how can we fix it because regardless of what industry you’re in, that will always happen. And I mean, just being in the cannabis industry, it’s so confusing. I mean, you can get just totally different advice, probably from the same person one week and the next week. So, you know, it’s just like, you have to really look at what’s working and honestly, like, for us the CBD and kratom thing, like, it was really like, well, what is the public want? Like, maybe, you know, they’re saying that about, you know, hemp, but like, it’s the public, you know, really supports it. I mean, are we doing this for the public?
So, for us, it’s a lot of it’s been A lot of like, Okay, well, what do people want? What are they supporting, because I’m not going to do something that no one wants, that’s not going to be a good business model for me? But to really like, follow that instead of the experts, because sometimes they can, like I said, Give you conflicting information, but you want to find like the experts that are really like, Okay, well, this is your situation. And this is what I suggest for you. And I think, you know, having those few good experts is really important. And then also staying really up to date on what’s going on. Because, you know, you almost know your business the best. And I think always, you know, a lot of times I hear like, Well, you know, they said that and I’m like well, did you tell them about this? And so it’s like always, you know if you’re going to get advice, which I think is totally helpful. Make sure they have the full story. So you’re not, you know, just beating them the answer you want because I think it’s really an important to be like, Okay, well, this is what’s happening. This is what’s working. And even though I might love this pet project, we can’t keep doing it because it’s not going to be sustainable and no one wants it. Yeah. So,
Sonia Gomez: you know, I say this all the time. The hardest part of being an entrepreneur is having the courage to make a decision. Yeah. That’s the hardest part. I mean, people are so indecisive. They can’t just like to make a decision and run in that direction and deal with the consequences. We just want it to be the right choice every time and that’s just unrealistic.
So a lot of being an entrepreneur, especially in this space is your ability to pivot on a dime. Change directions. No matter how fast and hard you’ve been running in one direction, you have to be ready to move.
Dafna Revah: Yeah.
Sonia Gomez: I mean, we’ve seen it over and over again, but it’s just about having the courage to make the decision. Be willing to fail forward because every choice that you make is getting you one step closer to where you want to be, whether it’s the right choice or not. Timing is a huge piece of it, too is like, when do you make the choice? To move or not to move [crosstalk]
Be willing to fail forward because every choice that you make is getting you one step closer to where you want to be, whether it's the right choice or not. - Sonia Gomez Click To Tweet
Dafna Revah: Right. Exactly. Timing is everything. And you know, my husband, and I always talk about that. And I’m always like, you know, what if I didn’t leave my job, and we decided to do this full time and open up CBD Kratom and all this, like, could we have done that now, in 2019, I think it would have been a lot harder for us.
So I think a lot of the time is like knowing when to act like this is the time now to do this. And I think that’s really important, oftentimes, very hard to figure out, you know, and sometimes the timing just doesn’t work out for whatever reason, it could be a fabulous idea and the timings not working out. So you’re like, we’re going to do this next year when it will be better, something like that. So I think that’s, that was a great point. You know, timing is often Everything.
Sonia Gomez: No, it really is Warren Buffett who built his entire fortune and reputation based off of timing. He Yeah, information, watches, what everything and everyone is doing selects the marketplaces that he wants to move in because he has full competency. And that gives me confidence that he watches the timing of things and makes us move then. I mean, the guy could literally buy the planet earth if he wanted to, but he doesn’t. He just makes very strategic moves at the right time. And that’s how he makes it builds his business, whereas Oprah built her entire business off of who she knows, and how she can tell that story.
It’s just there’s different paths for different entrepreneurs, but timing will be the thing that grounds your business, [cross talk] to the road, and forces you to make the choice to either move or stay. Right. I think the timing is impeccable.
Dafna Revah: Yes
Sonia Gomez: We had a really similar time. And what we did with our, with our online space and because we hit it at a time where the industry was just starting to evolve and become a mainstream conversation, we grew from zero to a million followers inside of months, and have impacted hundreds of millions around the world. So Timing is everything. And just making the choice to do it before you even know what it is like let it just organically evolve. And here you are celebrating your incredible growth.
What would you in this day, they always say If you only knew what you if you only back then knew what you know now how your decisions differently and we have a lot of budding entrepreneurs listen to our show, who are trying to navigate their way through and figure out how they can capitalize from the green rush. Everybody has a different set of assets or skill sets what you tell yourself, you know, five years ago, seven years ago, somebody in your situation who was looking at this question Opportunity wanted to make a move, but wasn’t sure what the best steps to take what would be two or three things that you could share with them in our segment of words of wisdom.
Words of Wisdom
Dafna Revah: I think it’s going back to kind of what you just hit on if I had to tell myself like, five, seven years ago, what to do, especially in this green rush, it would be to just jump in and try something. I mean, you’re talking about timing. So, you know, maybe now is the time but maybe someone doesn’t necessarily know what they want to do in the industry yet. My suggestion would be just try something because even if you make that choice now you can always change it, you’re not going to be stuck doing that one thing you can always change it.
And I think that you know, for myself, you know, I took some jobs and I was like is this really for me, but every single position I’ve had, I’ve learned so much in even if it wasn’t necessarily what I wanted to do or what I really believed in like, I personally believe in CBD and kratom, I’ve seen it help thousands of people. So I really believe in it. I can’t say I felt that passionate about everything else. But I think by having other positions, I just learned so much. I mean, you just, you learn so much from everything that if you’re interested in getting in this industry, I would be I would suggest taking any job.
I mean, obviously not something that you’re really going to dislike and waste your time but I think there is a learning opportunity in anything and if you like this industry, if or if you like a specific company, but they don’t have you know, that buyer position open and you really want that but they have something else open like maybe social media and you know how to do that you can take it because you can always move to do something else but you shouldn’t ever lose out on learning from any opportunity.
If you think that there’s something valuable in that company or that position or Just the industry as a whole, you should jump in and do it because I think a lot of people, like you, said that, or I don’t know if he said, but he kind of alluded to that, you know, there was waiting for the right time or the right thing to do. And like, that almost never happens. Nothing ever perfectly aligns, you kind of have to push it yourself. So if you know you want to be somewhere in 5, 10 years, you might not have the straight pathway there because that doesn’t exist. It’s never easy, and it’s never straight. So, you know, I really think for anyone, especially in this industry, like now is a great time to just take any position and learn about it. And if you have a specific company you like to take a position there and it could be anything. It could be a store associate and if you want to do better there and you know you have this drive, you know I think you can do it. I think a lot of it depends on someone deciding to make that choice to do it. And I think a lot of people are always hesitant. And I think that’s, that’s the struggle. I mean, I know for sure I’ve missed out on stuff by just like not making a decision. I’m sure. So I think now, I would say is the time and, you know, I think if someone is really interested, they should just do it.
Sonia Gomez: I couldn’t have said it better myself when I’m over here like taking notes, saying like, how am I, I want to, you know, I always had my little words of wisdom here at the end, so you could not have left it on a better train because my contribution today is the episode of words of wisdom. And you guys, if you’re listening, make sure you take notes because she just dropped some heat on y’all.
But I’m going to pick it up where you left off in the Just do it. The idea of just doing it, everybody that I know who’s asking me, Sonia, how Can I get in? Sonia, what you know, where are the opportunities? What should I do I have this, what can I do? The thing is, is that you just got to do it. Analysis paralysis is your biggest enemy when doing anything. If you try and figure out if the sky is going to be blue or green tomorrow, you’re going to miss out. If you’re paying attention to whether that’s a sun or a moon in the sky, you’re going to miss the opportunity. If you’re trying to decide if a bumblebee can be an ant. You are going to miss the opportunity.
The details are not the decision. The opportunity that you are looking for is right in front of you. It’s unfolding in multiple ways and the thing that you should leverage to help you decide what your entry point is is your unique skill sets and your unique passion. This is so the idea of just doing it is like a search for the opportunities that you feel like would make you most excited and go for them, there’s probably 10 of them right now.
Go down the line and find your position and how you can bring value to an existing company. If you don’t have a business yourself. There are tons and tons of ways for you to develop the necessary skill sets you need to thrive in this organization, or in this industry as a whole. And chances are if you are a working adult who’s held the job or managed a family, your skill sets are going to be useful for this infant industry.
And then the final thing I will give you and this is probably the most important piece of anything that I can say to you. Don’t give yourself another job for the sake of having a job and getting a paycheck. You can do that in any corporate setting in the country in the world right now. If you want to. There’s plenty of jobs available plenty of competition. in this industry, though, you have a unique opportunity while you’re making the corporate to cannabis jump, you have a unique opportunity to really create a lifestyle by design. Look at the different holes that are in the industry right now.
If you’re a lawyer, there’s an opportunity for you to tail your current skill sets to come into manage compliance for companies. If you’re an accountant, Lord knows we go through the audit, we need your help. If you’re a bookkeeper, we need you in the house. If you are a nurse, we need your medical background. If you’re a doctor, we need you helping our patients understand how to use products just like this to transform our lives.
No matter what you have done, customer service, HR or just worked as a supporting role in a restaurant, you have a necessary set of skills and you should really think about what kind of life you want to be living and what kind of value you can bring into this marketplace with the most amount of leverage that you can get that law of reciprocation.
The Law of Reciprocity says that the value you bring in will be what is returned to you. So think about how you want to live, how often you want to work, what kind of life you want to provide for your family, and select the entry point based off of that.
This is your opportunity to transform the way that you feel and function, but also contribute to the way that the next generation is going to see and experience this incredible life. So take responsibility. And at the end of the day, it’s time to make a decision, just jump. just to do it.
So those are my words of wisdom, the final thought that I want to brush on and I think it’s a really important subject to talk about minorities are missing in this industry. And there are, for me, not enough women who take ownership of their power, the role that they play in this space. You’re a CEO, co-founder of and you know, very successful business. I want to hear a little bit about what that’s like for you as a woman entrepreneur in this industry. What do you feel like you have a certain responsibility to uphold, or a certain set of goals to lay a path for other women or girls that want to come into this space?
Dafna’s Challenges as a Woman in Position
Dafna Revah: Definitely, I think that those always added pressure almost, when I go into meeting people are always, you know, surprised to see a woman in a position that I am I think it’s just something that, you know, is you just always expect it to be this, you know, guys sitting up there so, I think I feel it almost every day and sometimes it’s a great experience that you meet other you know, business owners who are women and you know, you share stories, things like that. Then I go into a meeting and I feel like I’m underestimated or I feel like I need to, you know really overcompensate because I am a woman.
So I think that for me, I’ve always tried to with my husband, we’ve always tried to split up responsibilities, but also let each other speak in every meeting so that people know, you know, it is we are co-owners, we make decisions together. And so I think that’s something really important too. Because I think a lot of times, you know, I’ve always been like, I want to run the world and do it all myself. And, you know, I can’t do that. I can’t do everything myself and be Wonder Woman and all of that, you know, it’s simply impossible. So I think that it’s really important. I really want people to see, you know, me as a woman in a high position, but also know that you can get support too. I feel like I always hear people and they’re always like, oh, like, how do you do it all and stuff. And I’m like, I have support. There’s no way I could do this on my own. That’s simply impossible.
So I think that’s one of the biggest things I’ve also seen. From like, a lot of my good friends, you know, they’re always like, I gotta do this. And, you know, I have a lot of determined friends and you know, that we’re 24/7 and all of this and I’m always like, man, we don’t have to meet these, like, insane goals that we give ourselves.
I almost want to, you know, go back to like myself, like, you’re talking about five, seven years ago that, you know, I wish I was, like, let’s get some, you know, some great goals that I can meet, you know, a lot of times I’m like, I want to do that, and I want to be on this board or that board and I want people to see me and, you know, I want to be on you know, most influential businesswomen and things like that. And it’s all fine and dandy, but it’s a lot of work.
So, I think that it’s really important for me to know that people see me and that they know that they can get here as well and they can be business owners and have, you know, big companies and things like that but also know that they can do that with support, and it doesn’t make it any less special. because no one’s done it on their own. That’s simply just not true that someone did on their own, regardless of their gender, anything, it’s just it, you always need a good team around you.
And, you know, I think as, as a woman, it’s always really nice for me to know, like, I love when we have like our training managers or management meetings, and people come in, and you always see a variety of genders in the room. And I think that’s, that’s just really important because, for us, you always want to be comfortable. You know, like, you don’t want to go to a place that you’re not comfortable.
And I think if you don’t have diversity, then you miss out on a lot of talent because someone just might not feel comfortable working there. So that’s actually something that we really strive to do, though. We make sure we have diversity so that we can have the best of the best because I don’t want to just be one thing and you Nothing else because that it’s kind of ridiculous. I want us to be known as being diverse and having the best people together to make these decisions and have the best CBD and Kratom shops out there.
So, you know, I think that that’s the biggest thing for me. I think that I want people to know that as a woman you can get to be the CEO. And you should definitely if you have the talent and the drive to do so. But don’t do it on your own. Because it’s just impossible and it’s too hard and there’s no reason for it. There should be people that support you.
And I fully believe that I think that your support team is everything and that you should surround yourself with people that want what’s best for you or best for your company, whatever. Whatever your relationship is with them. You should be working for the betterment of something else rather than obviously just yourself because I don’t think you’ll get very far.
Your support team is everything and that you should surround yourself with people that want what's best for you or best for your company. - Dafna Revah Click To Tweet
Sonia Gomez: Can’t be the CEO of your own damn site.
Dafna Revah: I mean, I think you can, but it’s not gonna work long term.
Sonia Gomez: So the chief operating officer of own, you know, like the chief executive officer of my own damn self, like, you have to have a board and your board support [laughter] I love it. What a great I mean, for me, that’s the woman’s wisdom is knowing that our biggest strength is in our support system. And there’s nothing ego about it. You know, it’s just very much recognizing that having a solid team gives you the leverage that you need to bring the most value into the marketplace that you serve.
And I’m so honored and just really excited to meet you. I for one thing that you’ll definitely make it two goals like the most influential woman and all of that stuff. I think we’re going to see a new kind of person featured in roles like that. So I got really exciting and I can’t wait to continue our friendship and continue to share your guys’ journey. Where can people find you if they want more information about your stores or products
Dafna Revah: so they can find us at CBDkratom and kratom is K-R-A-T-O-M shops.com. That is our website. Also, anyone who lives in St. Louis, Dallas, Houston, or Chicago, please visit one of our stores. I think that is the best example of who we are. I think it’s a great experience. Just make sure you have about a half-hour to browse around and talk to the associates because I think that really can give you a good experience that you won’t find somewhere else. And you know, we always reach out to emails as well. So if you want to email us a question, you can email us at [email protected]
Sonia Gomez: Amazing. All of the social handles and websites will be listed right here inside of this blog along with show highlights and show notes from today’s interview, we are super excited to be able to just share your story and talk a little bit about what’s happening behind the scenes in this incredible industry. Dafna, is there any final words before we finish today’s interview.
Dafna Revah: just want to thank you this was definitely more enjoyable and definitely not as stressful as I thought it was gonna be. So I’m not always good at, you know, public speaking and all that. So if I said anything crazy, please forgive me. But it was definitely very enjoyable. And thank you for inviting me on the show.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah, absolutely. It was my pleasure. Hey, guys, thanks so much for being a part of this incredible community. We live to serve you and helping you understand the truth about cannabis and hemp and other natural remedies that you can use to transform the way that you feel and function on a daily basis.
And also to help inspire how you’re going to care for the people that you love yourselves, your family or friends, and the conditions that they may be suffering from. Or just taking care of that beautiful gift of life that you already have if you are healthy, and thriving. If you are a person looking for products that you can depend on to deliver the results you’re looking for, check us out on medicalsecrets.com and if you are a budding entrepreneur or established business and you are hitting any one of the roadblocks that we discussed today, go ahead and check us out at theemerald.com for the tools, tips, tricks, resources, and relationships that you need to grow and thrive in this incredible and yet challenging industry. I’m your host with the most Sonia Gomez. And I will see you guys on the next episode of The Hemp Revolution. Thank you
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