Let us see a few aspects of starting a side-business while doing another job:

Legally Allowed?

It is extremely important to make sure that you are working on a side business legally and your current employer has no issues with it. In some countries like India, there are more restrictions on taking up any other job or doing a side business. Some countries allow it provided there is no conflict of interest in the current job and the business, or you are not competing with your employer. Some employers allow you to do a side business in the hours you are not in Office, and they also provide you a written consent for the same. So, as per your job type, employer and Country specific norms, make sure that you are not getting yourself into any legal issues by doing a side business.

The Type of Side-Business:

Once you are sure that there are no legal issues in starting a side-business, the next step is to select the right business. The type of business should be such that it is neither competing, not conflicting with your current full-time job. Your business may start as part of freelance jobs assigned on the internet.

It is also important to see that you should be able to do your business in off-job hours or during the weekly off for your job. If there is a need, you may take a few days off from the job and can focus on the side business but never try to do the job and business during office hours. You will neither focus on the job, nor on the business and can get yourself into problems also with your employer.

There are many jobs which can be done in the available time and doesn’t require you to be full time working on the tasks. Such businesses are software designing, graphical designing, content writing, tutoring/teaching, providing administrative or accounts assistance, software development, mobile app development, online stores and much more.

Learning Curve:

The learning curve is important while choosing a side business. It is a challenge for you to select specific skills which are non-competing with your current work as well as you have your expertise in the same. It may also mean that you will have to learn new skills or brush up on some old skills. You may always want to start a business, but you never did that, and your liking and skills required for the business are the ones you have to polish.

Selecting skills where you can have a quick learning curve are important as you don’t want to start with something like learning a new programming language from scratch where it will take several years for you to be an expert.

Where to Find the Work?

There are multiple freelance websites to provide work. The websites are aggregators, and both employers and employees are available to assign and perform the jobs. You will have to register yourself or your business and services over here and start bidding for the projects you can complete. It takes a while to start getting jobs from these websites, but once you built a good reputation with clients, you can get regular tasks.

Freelancing Work:

An important aspect of doing a part-time business is that you have to get habitual of freelancing. It applies to both, working and assigning the work. If you suddenly get a lot of work in your job, you may have to find freelancers and outsource some of the work, so your clients don’t have to wait a long. Similarly, you should be ready to work as a freelancer in someone else’s business if that’s the way you are getting work for your business.

Developing Strengths:

It is important to understand that the new skills and new strengths are required to develop your business. You may decide to jump into this side business as a full-time business if you see the right growth and potential.

Remember, the job skills may or may not be of direct use in your side business. For example, it is very difficult to use skills like big data or mainframe coding in your business as the infrastructure requirements to work on these type of projects are very high.

Apart from technical skills for your particular business, self-confidence, salesmanship, presentation skills, negotiation techniques are important. Managing people and setting up processes are also the strengths you need to develop.

More Savings:

One of the main criteria to start a side business will be definitely to earn more and save more. You may be doing this for some big plan later or for your retirement. Whatever is the reason, you have to see that you can save some of the earnings you are making out of your business and just don’t go on investing all the money you earn from a job into the business. It is a common mistake most entrepreneurs will do and then again look for more money to manage their daily expenses. It is always good to invest into the business from the savings made through business and not to mix the job and business together.

Realistic Goals Before You Quit the Job:

As part-time business or side-business is the first step towards your entrepreneurship, you can take it seriously and work hard to make it successful. As per the workload, availability and the projects you are getting for your business, take the next steps.

You should set some realistic goals for yourself before quitting the job. You may be happy doing the business in spare time and continue to do so, or at a particular stage, where it’s not possible to continue with the job, you can take that call. The business is always more demanding, and employers are also! It means you will have to struggle a lot on both fronts, forget weekends, wake early and make a lot of sacrifice to personal life. If you are good with all of these pros and cons, you can start your side business while doing a job.

Kitty Gupta