I have discovered the importance of an income on the side. Something to fill the gaps while I focus on making my business work.
Sometimes one just needs that extra boost during a dry spell in your business. Something to keep you afloat till the other invoices gets paid. But before I think of a side hustle, I must weigh out the options.
The question to ask is, does it make business sense? For example, if I go and work for someone full time again I will only have time to focus on my business after hours and on weekends. Will I be doing justice to it!? How will it move forward with such little time and attention paid to it? Which of my customers do business in the evenings or on weekends? If a company hires me again what kind of work could I do according to my age and experience. What about the competition? Based on so many candidates looking for work in today’s economic climate how will my CV compare?
Employers are spoiled for choice. Let’s say they could pay me R12000 a month. This means I will have to work a whole month to wait for that kind of money. Money I’ve sacrificed my business time for. So I really need to be careful in selecting a part-time side hustle.
But if we are entrepreneurs, why not start another business? A side hustle to your main hustle. Your time and effort could be better spent because you will still be working on your own ideas. It makes more business sense to try and sell products or services, even resell someone else’s and get the money instantly but still coming to your own pocket in full.
Money that can be made quicker and within a shorter turnaround time than going back to work for someone for a whole month earning less than what you can make in your own business within a day. Depending on your services your bill to a customer can be up to R1000 on a bad day, most businesses make much more than that within a day! This makes business sense.
My side hustle ideas:
- Independent sales agent
- Food sales
- Resell products online
- Door to door veg basket sales
- House sitting
- Dog walking
- Makeup artistry
- Uber driver
- Logo design, web design etc.
- Home bakery
- Travelling eco car wash
I think it would be smarter to challenge yourself to think of another way to produce another income for yourself than to go back to a job where you’d be settling for less. If you need to make more money, go sell something. I think it will also be more honest. I’m reminded of a time when I started a business in secret and worked at my job trying to fund my business, a real definition of a side hustle. I felt guilty and dishonest all the time. It felt like I was using someone. Well, that job didn’t work out because there was always a disconnect.
Until I decided that I will be honest about my interests and how it can be of benefit to the right employer. I had a job where I could partner with my employer and sell some of my products through their business, this was an amazing experience, something I wish happened more often in businesses. Eventually, I decided it was time to go out on my own and so here I am.
But is it fair?
A lot of people recommend building a business while still working for an employer, I think it’s best to be open about this to that person, especially if it will affect productivity in their business or keep your mind distracted from it. Showcase how you can enrich their business with your products or services if it relates in some way, or even the skills you’ve acquired. Don’t use others as a springboard, it often backfires. Worse still someone could do it to you in your business one day.
Otherwise, get creative about selling something part-time. When you decide to have downtime in your main business. Or introduce a new product or service to existing offerings to impulse a quicker sale. Start a promo, that is limited time offer etc. These are some ways to get short term income to add to operating capital.
As an entrepreneur, being creative in this way is very important. It’s often when the pressure is on that I get my best ideas. In this way, I’m actually expanding my business instead of going back and forth from employer to self-employed and having to stop-start on my business because of time constraints. What I put in is what I get out when focusing on my business.
In someone else’s business what I put in I only get out much later depending on the job and the pay. Sometimes I must put in much more for very little pay because that’s the state of the economy. So why do this to myself? If I take some time to think creatively, come up with a targeted product or service, put together a clever marketing strategy, I can make some more money part-time, and it’s still my business. I still work for me and I can pay myself (and my bills) much quicker. This makes business sense!
Working for someone is you putting in maximum effort for minimum pay, and you keep chasing that increase plus benefits carrot each time. In your own business, you could probably invoice a client for your whole salary within a day, because they bought so many products from you because you put in the effort this week to work on your business. #justsaying
Until tomorrow, dear Diary.