Starting a side hustle is a personal journey with the potential to change one’s life completely. There’s something very empowering about increasing your income outside of your regular 9-5.
Some people use it to supplement their income, while others view it as a path to exploring new interests or hobbies. The goal of a side hustle may differ from one person to another, but the universal theme is the need for MORE.
Below, we have compiled five things to prioritise as you begin a side hustle.
A freelance creative and a part-time food vendor require different levels of investment in time, skill and capital. Because side hustles differ, deciding the best one for you is a gift only research can give.
Through research, you learn about earning potential, scheduling that works with your full-time role, growth projection of your hustle and the cost of starting. To be armed with information is to increase your chances of success.
2. Starting small
Many businesses fail because they start too big. Because running a business is time- and energy-consuming, you’ll want to conserve your strength for when things get rough (and they will).
You don’t want to commit to the part-time food-vendor life and realise two months in that you didn’t need that high-powered electric stove-oven that cost a fortune to set up. Small actionable steps also allow you to carry out tasks in a way your brain won’t read as overwhelming.
There is no shame in outsourcing tasks you can’t do. When starting a side hustle, juggling multiple responsibilities isn’t sustainable. If you had to plan meals, buy ingredients, cook, engage with customers and make deliveries without any assistance, it’s only a matter of time before you burn out. Don’t forget you have a full-time job, and this is just a way to supplement your income. Know your limits and delegate.
Unless you are water, you have competition. Don’t fret, this is good news. To know your competition is to understand your business. A study of similar businesses in your area will show you what to prioritise as a selling point. It allows you to leverage your competition’s weaknesses and provide a product or service that solves the problems they can’t. Think of your favourite toothpaste brand and why. If you were to switch brands, what does the competition need to get your attention? These are the types of questions you need to answer when deciding your side hustle.
You cannot create in isolation. You can, but unless the output is strictly for you, you need feedback. Businesses benefit from listening to what their customers say and adjusting accordingly. Not all feedback will be positive, and that’s okay. The important thing is to treat feedback as a love language.
Imagine, for example, that your customers don’t tell you the food you deliver is too spicy for them, but they stop ordering from you. That’s a loss. Word spreads that your food sucks, and now you are running a business nobody wants to patronise. Because customers may be reluctant to give feedback, you need to check in with them regularly and ask questions.