5 Ways a Side Hustle Can Further Your Career

By Carrie Smith on 24 April 2015 0 comments

Do you feel stuck in a career rut but not sure what needs to change? Your job likely pays the bills and quitting a steady paycheck just because you're bored or unchallenged doesn't seem like a smart option. You still have to pay the rent, after all.

This is where a side hustle can be both financially rewarding and creatively stimulating. But balancing a full time job and a side hustle is not always easy.

Here are five ways a side hustle can expand your career and give you more options.

1. Learn New Career Skills

One of the main benefits to starting a side hustle is that you can expand your knowledge by acquiring new skills. This can include learning how to start a website, optimizing social media channels, seeking out new clients, and even taking courses on copywriting, SEO, bookkeeping, and the like.

You always have the opportunity to learn something new. Even after four years of having a side-hustle turned full-time gig, I still find new programs, books, and courses that help me learn new skills and increase my knowledge about certain subjects.

2. Manage Multiple Projects

When you work as a traditional employee, you generally only have a certain amount of tasks each day, and you're often doing the same things each month. But when you have a side hustle, things are lot less consistent. You're not only an employee but also the boss, the bookkeeper, the receptionist, the manager — and everybody else.

As a side hustler, you wear a lot more hats and are able to balance many types of projects. Not only are you working for clients, but you're also managing multiple deadlines, and perhaps even outsourcing to other contractors. All of these things will help you learn to balance lots of priorities while still getting things done on time.

3. Streamline Your Workflow

If you don't have a side hustle yet, you may not understand the importance of managing your time wisely. When you have a full time job, family, household chores, errands, and a side hustle, you have to be very efficient with where you spend your time and energy.

When I started my side hustle alongside my day job, I began noticing holes in my workday productivity routine. I was able to streamline the processes at my job, in order to get more done in less time.

This allowed me to reduce my workload overall, so I could make room for other personal and professional tasks. My employer appreciated this too, as I helped them save money and increase productivity in the office.

4. Diversify Your Income and Career Path

Your career and income are tightly woven together and we all need to make a living to support our families. So what happens when your boss needs to cut costs, or you're handed a pink slip? A side hustle alleviates some of this risk by diversifying the types of income streams you have.

Finding another job can take a lot of time and effort, not to mention the additional time it takes to get paid from when you were first hired. This period of stress can be eased by having some money coming in from your side hustle, and a side gig can be a viable second career option, should you need it. It can also take off the pressure while giving you the chance to take your time in pursuing the best opportunity.

5. Broaden Your Network

Working in a traditional office setting means you see the same people day in and day out, which doesn't leave much room for expanding your network. With a side hustle though, specifically one that's online based, you're able to broaden your network everyday.

Whether it's meeting up at a local coffee shop, or connecting with new people at an industry conference, a side hustle offers the chance for you to broaden your list of contacts and like-minded individuals. This list of contacts could come in very handy in the future if you get laid off, need to switch jobs, or even take your side hustle full-time.

Do you have a side hustle? How has it helped expand your career?

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Guest's picture

"Learn New Career Skills"

^ This.

My query though is, given the time restraints that working family members have, where can they learn how to start a side hustle while being efficient with their time?

I know people who have been side hustling, and not getting anywhere for years and it's more like side wheel spinning than anything.