My current career was a side-hustle just a few years ago and because I had something to fall back on or go into, it was so much less stressful when people started talking about our company downsizing. In fact, if it wasn't for the voluntary severance packages I would probably be in that "safe" corporate job today...
But consider this, there really are no more "safe" jobs, not in any segment of the workplace, as most global economies are severely depressed, corporate's are all about profit and let's face it, bonuses, increases and benefits are not what they used to be. The world has changed but the narrative has not. Go to college, get a "good" job and retire... we need to rethink how we earn a living and how we can impact our communities. Also what we teach children about work!
Now, I am not advocating that everyone downs their tools and becomes an entrepreneur, but I am strongly urging you all to have another income stream to fall back on. This fills the gaps left by your salary not keeping up with the cost of living and gives you much more financial security and freedom.
Social media has made buying, selling and marketing so much easier. You no longer need a shop front or an office to ply your trade from, it can be done from your couch on your mobile phone. The other major advantage is that you can reach your niche market, so you can create or resell stuff you like (generic products to reach a mass market is so over). You can self publish, host a radio show, make videos...the platform is there!
Also the mere scale of your potential marketplace if we consider that Facebook alone has more than 2 billion users, this is a massive community for you to tap into. The opportunities are immense, available and not complicated to plug into.
So how do you identify a side-hustle? Here are a few thing to consider:
1. What talents do you have?
2. What problems can you see and solve?
3. What can you make?
4. Do I have a hobby that can become a business?
5. What would I do for free? What do I really love?
6. What services could I provide?
7. What do friends and family reach out to me for?
8. What do you do in your current job that can be re-purposed as a side project?
These questions will stimulate your thought process and observations. I also want to encourage you to get into the routine of trying to generate at least 5 new business ideas a week. Some will be rubbish but it will discipline your mind to look for opportunities and at some stage you will strike gold.
Here are the 7 kinds of income streams
1. Earned Income - this is your job
2. Profit Income - buying and selling
3. Interest Income - lending out money
4. Dividend Income - owning stocks
5. Rental Income - rent property out
6. Capital Gains - assets increase in value
7. Royalties - income from others using your work (an e-book, online video etc.)
Please remember that a successful side-hustle will take time and commitment. You will work while others relax, you will need to make this commitment to yourself and also set better boundaries at work to make this a success. Unpaid overtime, is time you could have invested in your side business. You also need to be very careful about any conflicts of interest or overlaps with your current employment. Follow your company policies in the case that you need to declare your side business. Also do not use company time or resources. There needs to be a VERY clear separation of interests and time for both.
We also need to spend our money more consciously. Support your local grocer, restaurant, makers or small business owners because this helps your neighborhood thrive in the long term.
Find your service/craft, build collaborations, plug into local networks, buy from your friends and support each other. This is good for all of us!
Long live the #sidehustle!
We all know them, the special wishes of our dear managers. And by that I don't mean the favourite type of chocolate that you have hidden at your desk for your executive. No, I mean the requests that come out of nowhere. The wishes and requirements that we receive from time to time and usually don't expect. Because they come in special situations, namely when you do not expect them.
Here is an example, which I once experienced myself a few years ago. One morning a former boss called me at the office asking me to stop Lufthansa flight 132 from Berlin to Munich, he was still in the lounge and was just leaving. Oh boy, I thought to myself. If I could actually do something like that, I probably wouldn't be working here anymore. Of course, I did everything in my power to stop this plane, but in the end it didn't help. The flight was gone and my executive mad.
I'm sure you also have an anecdote or two at hand when you think of these almost impossible requests from our managers. Some are hilarious, some just cheeky. I still laugh loudly at the wonderful scene of the movie "The devil wears Prada". A movie that every assistant in the world has surely seen several times. Do you remember the sequence where boss Miranda, played by Meryl Streep, is stuck in Miami because the weather has changed? She called it a "little breeze", but in reality, there was a hurricane level 5 in the background and assistant Andy should now bring her boss back to New York. No planes available, airports were closed. Wonderful! Many of you know these and similar situations. And it happens quite often that our managers believe that we have such a good connection to everybody that we can just turn the sun on and off.
But how do you feel about such requests? Do you feel challenged or humiliated?
I have always set limits, right from the start. I allowed a few requests and declined others. My bosses quickly noticed that, and I was really blessed to have managers who did not take advantage in this respect. And I appreciated that very much.
In the end, of course, everyone decides for themselves what to do and what not to do and how to deal with such situations.
And the next time you have such an unpleasant task in front of you, think of the Prada movie, smile and stand above things with confidence. This will work for sure.