We had the good fortune of connecting with Jenny Germano and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jenny, how do you think about risk?
Without risks I would not be where I am today. It has played a major role in my life and career. As I have matured and moved from being an entry level employee to a business owner, one of the most important pieces I have learned along the way is, life begins outside my comfort zone. This concept has been my rock in everything I do in my personal and professional life. When I started my business in 2015, I had gained a lot of experience working in a new industry as an employee but I had zero experience in owning or running a business. The biggest risk I took was leaving a steady paycheck and jumping off the cliff into the unknown – aka starting a new business – a completely new arena for me. I fell down a lot, made mistakes, I struggled, I experienced challenges and doubted myself all the time. I found my way to believing in myself through self commitment and resilience. Getting back on the horse again over and over really helped me build the muscle to face the challenges and it fostered the drive to keep pushing myself, even in the face of failing. Taking risks in a healthy way have been a key ingredient for me in having a successful career and amazing opportunities that would have been unimaginable to me a decade ago.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I spent most of my life as a gig worker and working in commercial kitchens/food service industry. Early on, I had multiple jobs and different things I could do such as a landscaper, a photographer, line cook, a catering field chef, a server and bartender. In 2008 it was getting hard to find work due to the recession, and Cannabis Dispensaries were beginning to pop up around the Denver area. I decided to take a leap, look for a job in a new industry I knew nothing about. My first job was as a receptionist in a boutique Medical Dispensary – which I had never done before. I spent the next 6 years gaining experience as an employee in the Cannabis industry working in Dispensaries as a manager. By the time I had reached 2011 working in the Cannabis industry, I knew I wanted to go into consulting and worked towards that goal. Amendment 64 (Adult Use Cannabis) had passed in 2012, and I knew at that point gaining the experience of operating a recreational dispensary would be the perfect steppingstone and exposure for what I really wanted for myself. In 2015 I founded ICS Consulting Service and left the world of being an employee, embarking on a completely different experience – being a business owner. For someone who had never worked for myself, other than gig working – I would say it was not an easy path. I soon realized in my process of falling down a lot, that working towards being successful is taking the harder way. I experienced what the industry was lacking at the time, while I was managing Dispensaries. I was able to see the gaps between owners and employees. My personal experience of being an employee in the early days of the industry, that is what inspired me to create solutions for operators. It also has fueled my passion for Cannabis policy, how current and new regulations affect the workforce and owners in the industry. ICS Consulting Service provides compliance support for licensed operators and new emerging states in the Cannabis Industry. Specializing in compliance based services, such as third-party State Regulatory audits, State and local license application support, technical and specification writing, standard operating procedures development, compliance operations training, employee retention solutions, employee onboarding, manufacturer food and product safety certifications/ServSafe® Instructor, OSHA certified, licensed facility build-out support, HR compliance, operational compliance readiness support and policy work.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take them to some of my favorite Paddle Boarding spots just outside the city. I am more adventurous/ outdoorsy than I am a city dweller. However, I am always down for some good old fashioned scooter riding through the Rino District and hanging on the patio enjoying a beer flight at a brewery.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
It’s been a multitude of people and influences along the way. I really do not have any books, groups or one specific person to share about. I just had some great mentors, coaches over the last 13 years, and all the different jobs, bosses, co-workers from who I learned a lot about myself. I would say the biggest gift has been watching my mentors living their own words – them leading by example gave me the context to want more for myself.
Other: Clubhouse: Jenny Germano @ Cannabiscomply