A Day in the Life of BrainForest

  • , by Ann Gregg Gerstner
  • 7 min reading time
A Day in the Life of BrainForest

We are so lucky. Truly lucky.

Christine and I have an incredible way of working off of one another and talking to one another that we both agree just feels like magic. Do we have skirmishes and miscommunications and misunderstandings? Of course we do. But first, they’re few and far-between. And second, our 23-year history lends itself to nurturing the trust we have in one another, as well as our trust in the process. We’ve created a safe space to be ourselves, and that is a really special thing we both cherish as we figure out the cannabis industry, our customers’ needs, and our vision for BrainForest. After years of traumatic hardships in the professional world, we both have the support to process and move forward and out of old hurts and behaviors developed out of self-preservation. Again, we feel so lucky to be here today. To be here now.

So, now that you see some of the history we each bring with us, how do we use our skills and talents together to create one of our incredible and fun BrainForest Catalog, Merch Store, Grow Diary, News Blog, and PotLuck Recipe Hub? So many things!

A typical day in the BrainForest starts around 3 am when Christine wakes up and starts working on numbers, orders, and shipping agreements with our overseas suppliers. She is a pro at sales and business! Her mornings are full of back-and-forths regarding quantities of items, their dimensions, confirming designs, and making sure everything runs on time. She works diligently on the backend of the website, focusing on speed, user experience, and product development. You may have had the opportunity to chat with her via email because she is our front-facing customer care liaison extraordinaire. If you’ve ever had an issue with a shipment, Christine is there to respond and solve the problem quickly and seamlessly. Her care and commitment to each customer’s personal experience is unmatched. Her sincerity and compassion are apparent even in the briefest of exchanges.

I typically join the fray a bit later in the morning. Once I’ve dropped my two kids off at school, I hop online and usually start the day with a sales or marketing meeting, or at the very least, a daily check-in. Christine shares numbers and updates on all that’s happening. I share updates on design work, which comes in a number of different packages. Most often, I generate original designs and content for our social media accounts. When we run giveaways with influencers, I love to put together original looks for each campaign. One of my favorite elements of the job is when I have the opportunity to develop our packaging designs. Sometimes these are literally box or bag designs, but they also cover any print materials you find within one of our boxes. I love brainstorming ideas, and will often share initial thoughts that number anywhere from dozens to more than a hundred beginner ideas. 

When we have a design project in-development, Christine and I will talk through the strengths and weaknesses of our few favorites. I have found having a lot of ideas helps me to discern what I don’t want, so that’s often why the process includes so many pieces at the beginning. And speaking of our magic, it’s so funny, because in almost every design discussion, Christine and I land on the same favorites. I would think it would be impossible to sift down so quickly to our top picks, but no. We are often thinking the same thing right from the very beginning.

Once immediate design work is talked through, we shift over to our influencers and collaborators (who we love, by the by!). Each collaborator has such a unique, fresh voice all their own. We love seeing what they do next and often talk over posts, campaigns, and new videos as their work often sheds light on the choices and ideas we are working on week by week. What our audience doesn’t necessarily see are the wonderful conversations and connections we’ve made with these lovely people. Getting to know them, their lives, their interests, and their ideas is so much fun. Each person who has become part of #teambrainforest is truly someone special. They have such big hearts. They’re hard workers and always have a little mischievous twinkle in their eye. Our work with influencers has been one of our biggest surprises because Christine and I both find such joy and fun working with these amazing people. 

Once we’ve worked our way through our current items, we set priorities for the day. These are funny because no matter how organized and ready we are for this or that, something always bubbles up to the top and needs doing Right. Now. It never fails. With our priorities set in place, we jib ‘n jabber a bit. Lots of laughing. Then we sign off and set ourselves to work - Christine in northwest Minnesota and me in St. Paul. It’s a unique situation that works well for us. 

Throughout our workdays, I listen to true crime podcasts or the classical music station if I need to think about words (like this here blog), and Christine turns up the 90s grunge scene when she’s packing boxes or crunching numbers. We both have our animals who pay lots of visits throughout the day. Her dog Ace and two cats - Porkchop and Galileo - keep her company. While my three cats - Jupiter, Cupid, and Gus - join me as I work either on my lap or nearby. We’re right on-trend with the whole working-from-home movement and we both make it work for us. 

If we need anything as we work, we typically text one another. We’re not above memes, gifs, or just ridiculous, silly observations as we’re chugging along. There’s something special working with your best friend. The work doesn’t feel much like work. It’s fun. And the energy to move through a project almost creates itself because when Christine or I get excited about something, our enthusiasm spills over to the other person who then gets excited, and it’s this wonderful cyclical thing. We definitely feed off of one another in the best way. 

By the end of the day we’re pooped. (Fun fact, that phrase gained traction in the 1930s.) Christine will often find herself in her home-grown garden and I will often head out for a walk for some fresh air and sunshine. There’s a lovely satisfaction after a full day of getting things done, and it’s fun to percolate on tomorrow, because again, it’s so fun!

Thank you for being here with us and for supporting our small women-owned and -run business. I hope you’ve enjoyed sneaking a peek behind the curtain. Is there anything else you’d like to know about BrainForest? Drop us a line at brainforest420somewhere@gmail.com and let us know!

BrainForest's Heart & Leaf


Happy. Good.

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