As a strategic visionary and CEO, Charles Jones excels at inspiring teams to commercialize pioneering research and technology. Throughout his career, Charles has leveraged prescient insights into where an industry is going to launch successful enterprises.  Under his leadership, LucidMood creates and delivers THC and CBD products precisely formulated to deliver specific moods while allowing consumers to retain control and clarity of thought.  Charles has a well-deserved reputation as an intelligent, collaborative, calm, playful, trustworthy and decisive leader who is easy to work with and inspires peak performance from employees. His strengths encompass finding creative solutions to complex problems and pivoting in response to rapidly evolving market conditions.
His background includes leading internet start-up and driving breakthrough projects at IBM. As the principal of the Institute for Adaptive Mastery, he coached senior executives on emotional intelligence (EI) to be better leaders. With Jim Knickerbocker, Ph.D., he authored “Making Peace with your Emotions: Turning Emotional Pain into Performance Gain” providing practical tools and methodology for raising EI based on Charles’ original research in cognitive science.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you share with us the story about what brought you to this specific career path?
I was researching the long-term consequences of cannabis use when I stumbled upon peer-reviewed studies suggesting that some of the less desirable effects of THC (such as anxiety, memory impairment, and lethargy) could be mitigated by controlling the ratio of CBD to THC. Digging further, I learned that the mood-altering properties of cannabis were a function of the terpene profile and the idea of combining cannabinoids and terpenes in precise ratios to create “designer highs” was born.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company?
The evolution of our product has been most fascinating to me, at every step. When I started LucidMood I knew I wanted a consistent, mood-based product. Our first round of consumption method was multi-step, and left a lot to be desired. Since then, moving into the vape category and watching that category develop across the nation has been extremely interesting.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
OMG! It didn’t feel funny at the time but it sure feels funny now.  To speed the pace at which we could try out new formulas, we would infuse hemp pucks with individual cannabinoids and terpenes and then use a dry-flower vaporizer to imbibe a stack of these pucks. This worked so well as an R&D platform, we deluded ourselves into thinking that consumers would enjoy the flexibility as much as we did. Well, we launched with “pucks” and it was an instant failure. So, we pivoted to vape pens and it was an instant success.
Growing a Cannabis Business - CBD - Charles Jones, LucidMood
Are you working on any exciting projects now? 
We are! About a year ago, we began working on a novel encapsulation technology that will allow us to create “mood cubes” which, once placed in the mouth will deliver the same experience as our vape pens in as little as 10 minutes. We expect these to be a huge hit with existing users who want a way to consume in places where vaping isn’t permitted as well as new users who would rather avoid the use of a vaporizer.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
Keith Levy, a former Chief Marketing Officer of Anheuser Busch, was an early investor in the company and has lent his business and marketing acumen to our efforts ever since. He has a way of asking just the right question at just the right time to bring out our best thinking.

This industry is young dynamic and creative. Do you use any clever and innovative marketing strategies that you think large legacy companies should consider adopting?
We focus on marketing strategies that leverage the innovations we’ve incorporated into our products. This ensures that legacy brands CANNOT copy.

Can you share 3 things that most excited you about the Cannabis industry? Can you share 3 things that most concern you?

  • The high rate of innovation in the legal cannabis industry.
  • The influx of professionals coming into the cannabis industry from adjacent industries.
  • Growing consumer acceptance of the mood-enhancing benefits of cannabis.


  • There are a number of brands that claim to dial in a desired effect but don’t. I worry that these brands will turn consumers off from brands like ours that do deliver the promised effect.
  • The black market, particularly in California, is alive and well. I worry that this will delay the day in which consumers can rest assured that the products they buy are safe and consistent.
  • Reputation networks in the cannabis industry are still rather relatively immature. This can make it difficult to identify trustworthy partners and vendors.

Growing a Cannabis Business - CBD - Charles Jones, LucidMood
Can you share your “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started Leading a Cannabis Business”? Please share a story or example for each. 

  • Raising capital, particularly in the early stages, will be far more difficult than in other industries. We scraped by with friends, family and angel financing until we had $1 million in annualized revenue and distribution in 3 states.
  • Banking will be a huge headache. Despite the fact that we are an ancillary business that does not touch the plant, we’ve lost five bank accounts.
  • Not everyone you meet will be reputable. Several players proved to be other than they represented.
  • There will be major hiccups along the way. The recent vape health scare is but one of several unexpected setbacks and hurdles that we’ve weathered.
  • This will be the most fun you’ve ever had in your career.

What advice would you give to other CEOs or founders to help their employees to thrive?
Lead, don’t manage. Set an inspiring vision, give each report an area that they are responsible for, and let them set their own stretch goal. It’s amazing what competent ambitious people can accomplish when you believe in them.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement  that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
We’re on a mission to show the world that they can brighten their mood and live a more enjoyable life through the judicious use of cannabis.

What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?
Instagram – @lucidmood
We have pages on Facebook and LinkedIn as well

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!