Nothing like a little Covid disruption to get you started thinking about a new gig, or perhaps just making more of a go of it on something that used to be a hobby. Now more than ever it’s easy to get a side hustle going. Here are a few pointers to get you started.
- Think Business Structure. This doesn’t have to be complicated. Most people start as sole proprietors or if another person is involved, then it’s a partnership. B
- ut either entity could be rolled into a Limited Liability Company or LLC. This is just like it sounds – an entity that automatically limits your liability under the law. Why wouldn’t you want this? Who knows what could go wrong. Yes, you’ll want to keep appropriate insurance in addition to forming your LLC. But forming an LLC demonstrates that you’re serious and you know something about what you’re doing. You can form an LLC online for a few bucks at wdfi.org.
- Think Financial Separation. Hopefully your new business is going to generate lots of revenue. For sure it’s going to generate expense and those expenses may be tax deductible. Your tax reporting will be a lot easier if you have separate accounts for your business. So get a business checking account and perhaps a business credit card as well.
- Think Bookkeeping. Not exciting, I know. But having accurate records is crucial to any business. How do you know if you’re making any money or not? Besides engaging in the financial separation described above, you’ll want to take record keeping to the next level by using an accounting software package. There’s lots of good, inexpensive software out there and they’re not hard to learn. Pick one and keep good records.
- Think Network. Somebody else has already cracked the nut on how to be super successful doing just what you’re doing or something very similar. Forget what you were taught in school and copy them! The marketplace isn’t going to reward you for figuring out on your own stuff that is already commonly know in your industry. So make friends and pick their brains.
- Think Sales. Every business is going to need someone to hustle the product or service and that someone is you. Learn how to sell and you’ll never be hungry or broke. There are plenty of books on this topic for free at the library.
Now get going!