Managing a side hustle while working full-time is not easy, but we’ll teach you how this can be done.
For today’s post, I’ve invited Sermed Mezher – a medical doctor, YouTuber and Airbnb host – to share his tips on how to successfully juggle a side hustle and a full-time job at the same time.
How to balance a side hustle alongside a full-time job
As a medical doctor working through the pandemic, you may think that I’d be hibernating between shifts to conserve energy. If you’re talking about the Sermed Mezher of 4 years ago, you’d be right. However, the Sermed of today knows that “you have to know the darkness before you can appreciate the light” – Madeleine L’Engle. That’s how, in these busiest years of my career, I have expanded two side hustles: a YouTube channel and The Safari House.
In this article, I’ll share with you my top 3 ways to grow your side hustle while working full-time.
1. Think like a CEO, not a hobbyist
Your side hustle is a business, and it should be treated like one even if you’re also working full-time. That is because your business needs to fuel your life, not engulf it. You need a cash cow to produce maximal reward with minimal effort. That is true even if you want your business to remain as a side hustle producing passive income and nothing more.
In the long term, this cannot be achieved unless you have systems in place to automate the majority of the required work. That is because for any business/side hustle to grow it needs many working parts. That is marketing, finance and operations to name a few.
The E-myth Revisited by Michael Gerber states that most failed businesses are due to “technicians” struck with an “entrepreneurial seizure”. To overcome this and thrive in the 10% of businesses that are alive at 5 years, you have to learn what it means to be a leader and manager. This may sound ridiculous with no employees, but it’s one of the most powerful things that you can do.
The first thing you must do is create a Vision Statement and Mission Statement for your business. What do you want to achieve and how will you do that? How does that fit in with where you see your personal life going? Then you need a detailed business model. These will form the blueprint for every decision you take with your business/side hustle going forward. It also helps you transition into an organisation if you replace your income from your side hustle while working full-time.
2. Effective time management
For you to build a successful side hustle while working full time, you must manage your most valuable and limited asset: time. Dr Stephen Covey splits time into a 4-quadrant time management matrix, as you can see below.
Now all of us will spend time in each of these quadrants, but, you should be spending most in quadrant 2. This will stop important matters from becoming urgent – like a guest requesting check-in details or getting your car serviced. Quadrant 4 is the passive zone – mindless scrolling through social media and binge-watching Netflix will land you here. If, however, you’ve spent a long day working and you are simply relaxing after that, watching a movie is quadrant 2. That’s because if you burn yourself out then you’ll rapidly lose effectiveness.
Track yourself for a day – in what quadrant do you spend most of your free time? If it’s any other than quadrant 2, then continue daily tracking until you’re a time management master.
3. Network for net worth
Unfortunately, life is unfair. Part of that is that success ultimately comes from the culmination of both your effort and unfair advantages. Would Evan Spiegel have founded Snapchat if he wasn’t born into a family of millionaire lawyers? Almost certainly not. But, the majority of us do not have the luxury of being born into a family of financial elite. Fortunately for us, there are multiple examples of people who have leveraged connections they have made to their advantage.
That means for the majority of us, the path to success will involve others. This is something I have had to really work on as I have always worked as a “lone wolf”. I know now that working in this way puts me on the motorway to high workload with low reward. So, how do we meet people within our area of interest?
Firstly, you have to shout about what you are doing. Share your work and publicise it on social media, when talking to friends and meeting new people.
Secondly, attend networking events – these can be in person or online.
Finally, join Facebook groups created for your field. These usually have communities of likeminded people that can give you insights you hadn’t even thought of.
Building a successful side hustle while working full-time
Now it’s time to put all of this advice into action. Get out there, plan your business, master your time and make some powerful contacts. Doing this will take your side hustle while working full time to the next level.