The living standards keep going up, while your paycheck stays the same. It’s hard enough living from paycheck to paycheck, if the situation doesn’t get better soon, you might find yourself in debt. You can sit pretty and wait for the condition to get better, or you can take matters into your hands and control your financial future. I’m not trying to advise you to ditch your job in search of the elusive greener pastures. On the contrary, my advice leaves your 8 to 5 intact, all the while putting extra coins in your pocket.
Side hustles are small but profitable businesses that can go from supplementing your income to sustaining your lifestyle. More often than not you have had an idea that could make you some extra cash on the side, but like many businesses, starting out is is a hurdle. Here are a few steps that should give you a more definitive direction on starting and running a successful side hustle.
- What do you want to gain?
The motives behind starting a side hustle differ from one person to another. You need to have an objective and somewhat of a goal. In this case, starting it for the money is a relatively common idea, however, try to be specific with your objective ie, do you want a side hustle to pay your rent or buy a car? When you have a goal to work towards, you will be more committed to initiating and sustaining the side hustle. Starting a side hustle just because your friend started one is not a goal, your commitment is pegged on another variable. While answering what you want from the side hustle, try to be as objective and truthful as can be.
- Don’t get too caught up in the details
As we have established, starting off is the hardest part. Many times, people have the idea of their side hustle, but they get too caught up in the details. Remember, you already have an 8 to 5, don’t pour over the stress from there to your side hustle. Another significant occurrence in the topic is when people get stuck looking for the ‘perfect side hustle’ opportunity. Being that this is a side hustle –at least for the moment, you have time to experiment and do what you love doing. If you love baking but you work all day, you can try baking when you get off work or during the weekends and sell to your friends and family. You get to kill two birds with one stone, enjoying yourself and making money.
- Due diligence
Not to throw a spanner in the works, but you need to research your side hustle. Our market is unique and innovative; it is also replicated fast. Before you start out your side hustle, you should research on similar businesses, location, initial capital required, risks involved, regulations, profitability, and sustainability. If you jump on an opportunity without having all the facts, you could end up burning time, money and other resources.
- Utilize already existing resources
To start and run a side hustle, you have to be fairly resourceful. You need to utilize every available resource around you. Marketing for instance; you don’t have the money to erect a billboard sign, then why not start by word of mouth to friends and family? Have you ever bought something your friend or family had made? It almost feels obligatory to support them. You could also use the same to further your business. As you grow, you will have to improvise on the resources as you can’t live off your family and friend’s support.
- Keep it to yourself
You’ve probably heard of people complaining about how they had an idea, and they told another party who then went ahead and implemented the idea. You need to be cautious about who you allow into your entrepreneurial circle in the ideation and inception stages. Novice side hustlers often get carried away with the beauty of the idea that they start sharing with everyone, remember, when it comes to business, everyone has to earn your trust.
Side hustles can morph into grand businesses given time and space to grow. You have that idea you’ve always wanted to try out, start now; there’s never a better time like the present.
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