It's likely that you had to do some ground work before launching your side hustle, says Grant Sabatier, creator of Millennial Money, an online personal finance community, and that you had to work hard to become successful. Maybe you had to learn to build a website, or get better at copy writing, or figure out a digital and social media marketing strategy.
That experience can benefit you at your day job, says Sabatier: "It's a powerful combination: Make extra money doing something you enjoy and building new skills."
Here's how experts say your side hustle can help you at work.
"Not everything is quantifiable, but if you can bring those outside skills inside the office and demonstrate how you're adding value, you'd be a good candidate for a bonus, raise, or making a pivot within your company," says Sabatier.
For example, if you learned how to build a website for your side gig and your employer is looking to launch a new website, you can raise your hand and offer expertise "using the skills you developed outside your full-time job," he adds.
Now let's say you enjoy working on web development more than your current role. You'd be in a good position to ask for a raise, Sabatier points out, or to pivot within your company if you demonstrate success outside your role.
If you're interested in finding a new job or even pivoting careers, it will take more than a run-of-the-mill resume to stand out to a potential employer, says Claire Bissot, managing director at CBIZ HR Services.
Let's say you're applying for your dream job, but you only have four of the seven skills listed on the job description. Taking on a side hustle might be a way to develop those missing skills, and in turn strengthen your resume, making yourself a more attractive candidate.
Bissot says that prospective employers are looking for examples of resilience, motivation, self awareness, personal development, and other soft skills as well. Because side hustlers, by nature, have an entrepreneurial mindset and have proven their ability to execute their ideas, they tend to possess these kinds of traits.
Bissot recommends highlighting projects that have challenged you to grow as an individual, regardless of your material success. In fact, talking about any failures you've experienced with your side hustle, and how you've recovered and learned from them, can reveal your potential as an employee.
"Your strengths are your strengths, and yes, they grow over time, but I want to know your weaknesses and if there is an opportunity there to make [them] into a strength," she says. "More often than not, we learn from our failures more significantly than we do from our successes."
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