Suggestion 39: Lessons from side hustler interview at ESI Money

Below are highlights of an ESI Money interview with side hustler Brian from the Ride Your Money Wave podcast.


I had two Economics degrees and no economic/business experience. I almost felt like a fraud. I decided to start the photography business to a.) prove it to myself that I could run a business, b.) put my degrees to use, and c.) pay off the camera.

Advice and Lessons: 
Four key questions:
“What skill set do I have that I can market?”
“What am I so passionate about or interested in that I wouldn’t mind pursuing this interest the rest of my life regardless if I got paid?”
“With this skill, what problem can I solve?”
“How can I add value to my customer beyond what others are doing?”

Turning point:
My first solo wedding once I started the business, I charged $2100, which was almost how much I was making in three weeks. If I could make three weeks worth of income in a weekend, I knew something was there.

Lesson: Volunteering introduces you to great people and supports great causes.

Lesson: Seek information and feedback from veterans in your industry.

As I get older, I value and am protective of my sleep. As soon as I feel my productivity slowing, I shut down for the night and go to bed. No Netflix, no Instagram, just bed.

The Golden Rule is really the only rule you need in business, “Treat others the way you want to be treated.” Be kind. Delight your customers. Listen with intention.

What could have gone better?
Marketing. Sometimes, your competition will be marketing or branding experts even though their product or service is sub-par. Doesn’t matter. Something they are doing in their marketing resonates with the customer.

Readers: I hope this helped.

My Manifesto

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Check in here with feedback and requests.

Circling back to a side hustler interview

Let’s revisit–in more detail–resources I’ve suggested in previous posts.

Today, I’ll condense the first ESI Money interview suggested in this post.
Lots of valuable information in the interviews, but I can’t very well copy/paste acres of the content, so I’ve provided a short background followed by advice and lessons learned.

Erik from The Mastermind Within is the guest.

Background: At the time of the interview [May, 2019], three main side hustles—house hacking, consulting and freelance web design—made up the majority of his side income.

1. Creation of something new seems to be a lot harder than stepping into a role which already exists.
2. Focus is incredibly important in life. I was trying to do too much, and when I started, I didn’t have the time to fully dive in and give it my all.
3. Luck doesn’t happen unless you put yourself in those situations where you can “get” lucky.
4. For my subscription box, which I started in 2017 and have since closed down, I ended up closing out with a loss of roughly $20,000. I did make roughly $15,000 in revenue, but I wasn’t passionate about it.
5. Think about this for a second: in 5 years, you’ll be on this Earth for 43,800 hours. How many hours does it take to implement your idea? 100?

Readers: I hope this helped.

My Manifesto

Thanks for visiting.

Check in here with feedback and requests.