Good Day all, well as of late most of my post are in the night should I change it to Good night all. Anyway today I was listening to the audio book by Jason Fried the founder of basecamp named Rework which focuses on how you can create and grow a business with techniques that are frowned upon or not acceptable by “real world” standards. I’m not quite done listening to it yet and since I was out on the road and in the grocery, I was distracted a lot. But the information that I did grasp from time to time, it was really something to consider, I plan to do an analysis on the audio book soon disc by disc. One of the funny things is he was mentioned by quote in the previous podcast and I didn’t even know that Rework was his work, so I’m glad I had something of his to listen to. Well back to the work at hand, this analysis will be based on 6 tips to find the Right side hustle which I implore that everyone should consider in life. In this modern time its hard to get by with just one source of income, it’s not like long ago when necessities were to a minimum. Now the need for more money for a variety of reasons arise each month, the cost of living has changed drastically and as time goes on more and more money will need to be spent. The lesson will be taught by Laura Staples an engineer turn retail store entrepreneur, owner of the site GoFireYourSelf where she helps encourage people to go follow their passion and make money with it.

Here’s The podcast –

Key Points Taken

The path that led laurel to leaving her Engineer Job and starting her own business – 2:33
She is a recovering engineer? She got her engineering degree in 2004 and started working for lexmark creating color laser printers. When she began working at lexmark, she quickly realized how hard it was compared to being in school, for example in school the more hard work she did the easier it was to pass exams, if she finished her papers early she had more free time whereas at work the more hard work she put in and good results she got the more work they piled up on her. With that experience she began working in the corporate world and planned her way out, so she set about it by implementing her ideas for creating a retail store through her lunch breaks and after work. The plans took about a year and a half till she quit at the 3rd year of preparation she went back to Nashville her home town to build her eco-friendly retail store.

The Cost of Overhead was too damn high – 5:58
Rent was 5000, then there are utilities, employees, inventory and music. On top of all of these costs she opened her doors around 2007 when the recession hit. She learn really quickly that being entrepreneur can be a costly venture even when you planned it out. Two years later she closed up shop and moved on to her next venture, one lesson learnt though is compared to going to school to learn about entrepreneurship which costs about 30 – 40 thousand dollars, it might be best if you just dive right in with that same money.

What’s next – 8:38
While working at Lexmark she had been prone to food allergies and had found ways to combat them, this was her new venture, being a Health Coach. A health coach is like a life coach but focuses on your health and fitness. She went to school to be certified as a health coach and applied her marketing skills that she picked up from having the retail store and started a health business. This turned out to be great because it was something that she was passionate about as well as the overcame the main issue from her first business low overhead.

How did she get clients – 10:19
She gained her clients by reaching out to people who she already knew, and i quote “Build that network before you need it.” So keeping good relationships with the people who you have met via different situations is very critical to growth as an individual especially if you have a business. Another way she got clients were through referral partners in town, she contacted personal trainers, massage therapists and yoga studios. Once you have made an ideal connection you don’t have to work hard to get people to refer customers to you, its essential to do quality work with each customer even if you failed to totally satisfy the customer be able to maintain integrity by apology, kindness, refunding etc. wear your humanity on your sleeve. Another point is this kind of cooperative networking works well in this example Laurel referred customers to the yoga, masseuse and personal trainers and vice versa, you scratch my back I scratch yours. So if you are looking for business try to link up with someone who meshes with what you offer as a product or service. “It’s always easier to rise to the top with other people than by yourself.”

Her photography business – 12:42
Most of her adventures from one business venture to another has taught her a lot, she says that from doing the health coaching she learned that she loved all that went into getting clients (the marketing, speaking, meeting with referral partners) but strange enough she didn’t like attaining the client. This is because now that she had the client her duties were to serve them and it deferred her from the process of marketing. With photography the experience was different she loved the marketing aspect as well as the working with the clients by taking the photos, editing them, sharing them etc. The referral technique applied in health coaching worked for her here as well, because in Nashville where the music industry is very big she got a lot of clients who were new up and coming bands who wanted cover shots.

Helping someone find what their side hustle should be – 15:00
Ask yourself three big questions
1) What are you passionate about? DUH!!! – What you like to talk to your friends about, what do you like to do, What do you like to read? Because what you decide upon is what you will be invested in for a very long time and if you are not passionate, you will burn out quickly. As you can see before in each one of Laurel’s start-ups she had a passion for them and when you are doing something you love, people you interact with can really feel it emanate from you.

2) What talents and what skills do you have? – 18:46
What do people in your life usually rely on you to do for them? Because you want to pick a side hustle that plays to your skills and talents, if it’s not in line with what you do best it will be challenge to get it off the ground. Even though you may be passionate about something and don’t have the skill or talent for it for example you are passionate about football but you can’t play it at all doesn’t mean all is lost you can write about it, video blog about it, build a business based on fantasy leagues etc.
Make a list of all your passions and all your talents and find a way to combine those two together to make something unique. Think about all the skills you have, you never know how well you can mesh two together and get something awesome out to create an impact in the world market.

Have an experimenters mindset – 22:30
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10000 ways that won’t work.” Diving in and actually doing something than standing on the outside looking in and wondering what could be. As you go on through the process you learn valuable tools even if you failed that can carry you on to a next project that can benefit from said tool. Success is the individual and all the time you are growing as a person.

3) What do you want your ideal day to look like if you quit your job? – 24:11
Take out a piece of paper and describe your ideal day, just write all the things you would love to do in an entire day. It gives you a perspective of where and how you prefer to be working from, for example. do you prefer to be hands on, or at home behind your computer, also am I a 9 – 5 person or a night worker. This will help you really fit your business around your life and not your life around your business.

What can I do to generate ideas – 27:45
First thing is what problems and issues have you struggled with at some point? This is how Laurel became a health coach from solving her issues with allergies through proper dieting, change in health routine etc. By learning that she was able to get into it as a way of not only a passion but income generator. Also frustration drives you towards doing something about issues in your life and society, so take a pen and paper or use your smart phone and take note of things that irk you. When you come up with a solution more than likely there will be other people who have that same problem and you can market your solution to them.

Set aside for Idea Time – 29:48
Invest some time each day or week or month to focus on developing new ideas through various mediums eg. reading magazines, watch ted talks, listen to podcasts, read blogs etc. There are always ideas waiting to be extracted from those sources and maybe you can apply what was suggested to creating something that can work for your passion.

Brainstorming with like-minded peers 31:41
Bouncing ideas between people who are into the same things that you are interested it for example fellow entrepreneurs, full-time business owners, side hustlers. Dont be afraid to share your ideas, its great to get feedback as well to know if you are on the right track also they can give you useful insight into how much better you can make it that you never thought about.

Number one tip – 33:43
“Fear is just a companion in your journey.” Just embrace it and let it be your driving force that keeps you working towards your goal and not the force that keeps you stuck right where you are. Harness your fears and start working with them instead of resisting them.

This was a podcast I thoroughly enjoyed from her stories about breaking away from the corporate world to her many start-ups which brought both success and failures. Most importantly lessons which as she moved ahead in life were well implemented to improving and seeing what she enjoyed. Her six tips for finding the right hustle were on point as well very informative and easy to tryout for yourself. From using questions to find out what are your skills and talents, what is it that you are passionate about, what you would like your ideal day to look like, having idea time , sensing what bothers you then attempting to solve it and brainstorming with peers. Well that’s my time, thanks for taking a read, until next time.