One positive to come out of 2020 is that with more time on our hands, many people are rediscovering or uncovering what they are passionate about. With the employment landscape changing beyond recognition we’ve noticed an interesting trend...the emergence of the side hustle.
Our very own Kay Eriksson, TMS Talent Head of Operations tells us more about her own experience...
“It feels like everyone I know is starting a little side hustle this year” says Kay.
“From friends painting artwork, selling crystals, recording podcasts or just doing some freelance website building or graphic design work, there are loads of people filling their once full work schedules by following their passions, getting creative and doing something they love attempting to build a little revenue stream on the side. It's really interesting to see”. Kay comments
So what’s your side hustle?
“This year I've started baking and selling organic granola in addition to my day job! I personally love to cook and this was a way for me to get creative and do something I really enjoy. I’ve started selling it through local gift stores and direct via community social groups and local websites.
For me, it’s a hobby business. I still work my day job part-time for TMS Talent which I love, but with COVID disrupting our lives this year, starting Nourish by Kay has given me something cool to focus on and keep me extra busy which is how I love to be!.”
What benefits can you see coming out of this trend?
With more and more people working part-time and from home, starting a side hustle can help you develop new skills and help you stay positive by giving extra purpose to your life.
“For anyone who likes cooking you will know it’s an awesome way to chill out, almost a form of meditation. Then there’s the extra skills you pick up when running a home business like being an outstanding delivery driver… that’s a new experience for me!” Kay jokes
With many people in between jobs or struggling mentally, putting their energy into something they are passionate about brings new enthusiasm and creativity.
“The granola business lifts my spirits and while it's probably never going to pay the bills, it definitely brings a sense of achievement as I package the granola ready to go to my customers. It’s added a renewed sense of purpose that might otherwise be missing from life during COVID, which let’s face it can be pretty isolating at times.” Kay comments.
What advice would you give employers with employees who have a side hustle?
While no employer wants their staff side hustling on their time, “Ultimately, I think the best approach is to be supportive and flexible.” says Kay “Let's celebrate the fact your employees have initiative and a bit of entrepreneurial spirit. Try to harness that and utilise their new skills in their existing roles or at very least be encouraged by their optimism.” Kay advises “By empowering your team and supporting their passions you will end up with a more loyal and dedicated staff member who will be more willing to be flexible and nimble in their own work environment.”
Do you think it’s a trend that will continue?
“I firmly believe that small business is the backbone of our community. The support local, buy local movement is ever increasing, so I do think this is a trend that will continue as more and more of us support small businesses.”
The world is changing and if that means more of us are following our passions and side hustling then that’s great. Some of these tiny businesses could be huge successes and go on to support jobs as we work to build back our economy. Only time will tell!