There’s a story about a bank robber who was asked why he robbed banks.
His answer: “That’s where the money is.”
Now, meet a Girl Scout who put that lesson to work–selling Girl Scout cookies outside a marijuana dispensary in California.
We don’t know her name, but her father told a California television station she sold more than 300 boxes within six hours.
On the one hand, this is just a fun story about a smart young woman (not the only one however; other Girl Scouts have already picked up on the idea).
Given the scout’s apparent age, I will assume (and hope) has never smoked marijuana. But she was clever enough to realize that people who do, often get the munchies.
But it’s also an easy, inspirational message that I hope will make its way into lessons about entrepreneurship everywhere:
“Don’t fall in love with your product; find a way to fall in love with your customers. Then show it by solving their problems.”
With marijuana legalization on the rise around the U.S. (29 states now allow it in at least some form), the Girl Scouts have had to grapple with how it, and their response has changed significantly in even in the past few years. Each state’s Girl Scouts set their own policy.
“We don’t allow our Girl Scouts to sell cookies in front of marijuana shops or liquor stores/bars,” the organization’s Colorado chapter, which said in a 2014 tweet, after a photo of Girl Scouts outside a pot store went viral. (It looks like the photo was a hoax, however.)
They’ve since changed the policy, a spokesperson told the New York Times.
“Back then it was a blanket: ‘No, you may not,'” the Colorado spokesperson said in an interview. “Now, it’s more of: ‘Come to us, tell us where you want to be and what you want to do,’ making sure we’re checking off all of the safety guidelines.”
California, on the other hand, has apparently been cool with the idea for a while.
“We’re not telling people where they can and can’t go if it’s a legitimate business,” the California Girl Scouts said in 2014, when a Girl Scout set up shop outside a medical marijuana clinic in San Francisco.
Interestingly, and a lesson for entrepreneurs of all ages–the Girl Scouts makes a distinction between selling cookies from a wagon and setting up a booth.
Wagons are much less regulated–as long as the Girl Scout has a parent or guardian with her, they’re pretty much allowed to sell anywhere.
“So if that’s what they say they were doing… then they were right within the rules,” Alison Bushan, of the Girl Scouts in San Diego told ABC 10.
The 2018 story was first publicized by the marijuana dispensary itself, which posted her photo on Instagram, suggesting that customers should get some “Girl Scout Cookies with your GSC.”
GSC, in case you don’t know, is a marijuana strain that supposedly tastes like Thin Mints, according to Thrillist, and that is “currently one of the most prolific and highly coveted varieties on dispensary shelves nationwide.”
The employee who put it up said that by the time she came back there were already television news crews setting up.
“The funny thing is, after the news story ran, we had more Girl Scouts show up over the weekend,” she told Mashable.