Q – Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business. Please include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/ cities.

Mark Anthony Jones:
Wagon Hill Medical Warehouse is a full service medical cannabis dispensary licensed by the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority. Our companies are family owned and operated and we are conveniently located west of the Choctaw Casino and the Arkansas border and east of the Poteau River just off Interstate 540 in Pocola, Oklahoma. We are located exactly ¼ mile east of the Oklahoma-Arkansas border.

Q – Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).

Mark Anthony Jones:
My name is Mark Anthony Jones. I have a couple of bachelor degrees is Religious Education and Humanities with a focus on Music. I started a Kansas City talent agency with my partner on 1996, and we have been full time in that industry for almost 25 years. We have placed models and actors with agents and managers around the world. We started the careers of Ashley Graham, Derek Ray, Lindsey Shaw, Maggie Jablonski and Gil Perez-Abraham, among others.

In 2007 I became active in the Republican Party to bring the party back to constitutional principles put forward by Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul. I was a delegate to Tampa for Ron Paul at the 2012 Republican National Convention and a delegate for Donald Trump in Cleveland at the 2016 Republican National Convention. I was elected Chairman of the largest county Republican Committee in Missouri. Yes, an openly gay man was elected, TWICE, as Republican Party Chairman in Missouri and served two full two-year terms! I am currently serving my third term on the Missouri Republican State Committee.

Q – What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?

Mark Anthony Jones:
For the past 15 years, I have been dealing with a C5-C6 disc deterioration in my neck. The past 6 years I have had a medical card in the State of Colorado where I was attempting to lower my pain level if not alleviate it altogether. I managed to learn enough from my Colorado doctor to not only alleviate my pain, but to get me off of a 40 mg/day opioid habit.

When Oklahoma voted yes on SQ788, the old café on Wagon Hill that was at that point unrented, became an option for a dispensary. Both of my sisters were all in to open a dispensary and grow. So we operate the ventures together.

Q – What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?

Mark Anthony Jones:
1) Know going in that everyone you care about will not care near as much as you do about your venture. Guard your heart and most information from people who are not ALL-IN with your business ideas. They may not actively try to talk you out of it, but their luke-warmedness will affect you if you let them hang around.
2) Develop an appetite for risk. If you don’t, you will hesitate on a decision that could kill you. Risk is your friend and it will pay you in dividends if you are ready to move when the iron is hot. Otherwise you will develop a habit of being late and seeing the opportunity AFTER it has passed.

Q – What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?

Mark Anthony Jones:
1) The skill of managing people is essential. As an entrepreneur you need great people around you that grasp what the goals are and what you are trying to accomplish.
2) The skill of selling your own ideas sure comes in handy at times. Not only to your own people, but your political folks.
3) Depending on the kind of industry, but networking is an important skill in certain industries.

Q – How many hours do you work a day on average?

Mark Anthony Jones:
10-12 hours per day

Q – To what do you most attribute your success?

Mark Anthony Jones:
Hard work and the ability to attract good people and get them excited about issues or products.
How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
The most successful form of marketing has been word of mouth for our doctor recommendation clinics.

Q – Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?

Mark Anthony Jones:
So far we have not had to borrow other than putting a few things on a credit card.

Q – What is the best way to achieve long-term success?

Mark Anthony Jones:
The best thing to do to achieve long term success is have a plan and stick to it.

Q – Where you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?

Mark Anthony Jones:
We will develop the dispensary and grow and sell it off to a younger set of folks in about 10 years.

Q – Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?

Mark Anthony Jones:
Incredibles – Bob Eschino

Q – How important have good employees been to your success?

Mark Anthony Jones:
Your business is only as good as the employees.

Q – How long do you stick with an idea before giving up?

Mark Anthony Jones:
Well I have an issue here. I will stick with an idea until it threatens to kill me.

Q – What motivates you?

Mark Anthony Jones:
Two things – Helping people alleviate their suffering and making enough money to live on comfortably.

Q – What are your ideals?

Mark Anthony Jones:
To live humbly, walk confidently and always upstanding in whichever community I pass through.

Q – How do you generate new ideas?

Mark Anthony Jones:
That’s a process.

Q – How do you build a successful customer base?

Mark Anthony Jones:
The best way to build a customer base is to have a regular doctor with set ours every week in your dispensary.

Q – What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

Mark Anthony Jones:
I think my most favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur is the level of personal freedom.

Q – What has been your most satisfying moment in business?

Mark Anthony Jones:
Helping people is the most satisfying part of the business. When you help a lady who can barely stand for all of the tremors and the pain and send out the door with THC products and she comes back a week later and you aren’t sure it’s the same lady. The tremors were gone and she was walking pain free.

Q – What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?

Mark Anthony Jones:
Absolutely! There is no question that we think differently. Some people hustle and some people just get along.

Q – What kind of culture exists in your organization? How did you establish this tone and why did you institute this particular type of culture?

Mark Anthony Jones:
Our dispensary is medical. Our patient base is 90% over the age of 50 years old. We have established our company as a medical assistance company to help patients find relief with THC/CBD, not just to “get high”.

Q – In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur.

Mark Anthony Jones:
Active.