LOS ANGELES — Katie Hunt’s face lights up just thinking about taking a trip to her favorite dispensary.
“It kind of feels like a kid getting ready to go to the candy shop,” she said.
But these days, Hunt’s visits to Zen, a cannabis shop in the heart of West Hollywood, come with an added benefit: she can pick out almost anything she wants and her boss foots the bill.
“Getting to do it without having to pay for it is like a dream,” she said.
At 24 years old, Hunt works as a social media director for a cannabis wellness app called Jointly, which helps users track their pot consumption. As part of her benefit package, Hunt gets a $150 monthly allowance specifically for cannabis. And her friends are green with envy.
“I’m like the popular friend now because I have free weed,” she said, laughing. “It definitely doesn’t get cooler than that.”
As employees leave their jobs in droves, the phenomenon known as The Great Resignation is forcing companies to think outside the box.
Jointly CEO and Co-founder David Kooi believes cannabis reimbursement could help the company hire about 20 employees by the end of the year. He said the rebate is not just good for his team, it’s good business.
“When someone is in that kind of headspace where they’re feeling good about things and feeling good about their life and their employer, that’s probably when they do their best work,” he said.
The company said it’s even OK with people consuming cannabis during work hours, as long as it doesn’t affect their performance.
“In the same way that we all accept caffeine as something that helps make our lives better every now and then,” Kooi said, “cannabis, when used purposefully, can accomplish the same thing.”
Hunt said the perk was not the deciding factor in taking the job, but it sure didn’t hurt.
“It made me really excited to find out more about the company,” she said.