Humiston used the revenue from filling the jobs at Canna Advisors to make her first real hire. In 2016, as the company started to fill more senior-level positions, she changed its name from Gradujuana to Vangst Talent Network.
"Vangst means 'catch' in Dutch," says Humiston, who now has 25 employees. "I'm part Dutch, and the idea was we were catching the top talent, and it wasn't just interns and recent grads."
Canna Advisors is still a client of Humiston's today, and Vangst has placed eight or nine employees with the small firm, including a VP of business development.
"I've used a combination of internal HR people and recruiting agencies, and I just find that Karson's staff are really great hunters and good at reaching out and finding talent who might not be looking," says co-founder Diane Czarkowski.
On the success of Vangst Talent Network, Humiston held a cannabis career summit in Denver in 2016, and launched online platform Vangsters in August 2017.
There are 12,000 candidates, 53 companies and roughly 200 job openings on the platform so far, but Humiston says one of her biggest challenges is still helping companies overcome the stereotypes associated with the industry.
She recalls helping a client in San Francisco pull talent from a luxury brand to work as a retail store manager at their company.
"Convincing people to leave being a manager at Neiman Marcus or Chanel to manage a dispensary is a transition, and people aren't exactly comfortable with the industry yet," says Humiston. "So as a company, we have an obligation to educate our candidates on the industry, on where the industry is going and where the opportunities are."
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