Earlier this month Entreprov had a guest speaker Steve Wald share his best practices on developing a sales trend analysis for the Cannabis industry. In this blog post, I want to highlight some of the main points Steve presented during his presentation.

Identifying The Business Problem

One of the biggest parts of being an effective data scientist is clearly identifying the business problem you’re trying to solve. During Steve’s presentation, he describes his approach to performing an effective analysis of sales trends. One of the challenges he faced was correctly identifying the most successful Cannabis strands. This involved further evaluating the actual sales generated compared with sales growth per week for each strand. He discovered that some strands produced high numbers of sales but also were slowly declining in performance.

Making Sense of The data

After you have successfully identified the business problem, your next objective is to make sense of the data. As Steve continued to run more analysis, he discovers that certain smaller brands such as Gorilla Glue 4 show a higher weekly growth rate than larger brands. As Steve gains these insights, he’s able to take notes and make educated assumptions. Ultimately this uncovers the fact that some smaller brands are outperforming larger brands over an extended period of time.

The Big Picture

After rigorous testing against the set of initial assumptions, he’s able to develop actionable items for the client. Identifying the business problem was the first major challenge which involved understanding the business and asking the right questions. As Steve developed a better understanding of the business, he was able to develop a hypothesis. Once he developed a hypothesis, then his analysis process would prove the hypothesis to be true or false. The ultimate goal is to have enough information to provide business recommendations to the owner.


Steve’s case study provides another example of how data science professionals can operate within different industries. Learn more about Steve’s background and professional development from his Linkedin page.


Alex Brooks is the founder and CEO of AE Brooks, LLC (d/b/a, Entreprov), a Seattle-based firm that builds custom predictive analytics and automation tools to enhance a company’s performance and decision making.