By Adedoyin Jaiyesimi
I was at a strategy session some weeks ago and one of the people present at the session told us how she has her hands in different pies. She has a primary business but she has also been able to diversify into other areas just to be able to increase her streams of income. What caught my attention was that for some of the streams that bring in income for her, she does not directly execute the tasks involved. She has been able to find people who handle projects for her and she pays them a commission. She has several of them.
As she spoke, I thought about many of my friends who are handicapped by their 9-5 jobs simply because they haven’t opened their eyes to see ways they can make money even while they hold their full time jobs. I don’t believe everyone is meant to be an entrepreneur but I believe everyone can have multiple streams of income.
Having multiple streams of income in this economy is crucial. The way the price of regular food items keeps increasing is quite alarming and then, there is the news of the impending hike in fuel prices. Instead of sitting in a corner to lament, you need to ask yourself, “How can I make more money?”
To answer this question, you need to know the skills that you have. What do you love doing and how can you use it to add value? In what way can you create profitable streams of income from what you love doing? Some research is involved but if you take some time to do this research, you will find something you can do with the skills that you currently have.
I know a lady who worked as a customer service executive for many years and when things got difficult financially, she started offering customer service training to staff in small businesses. It all started when her friend complained that she was tired of her staff who had poor customer service skills and it was affecting her business negatively. This lady offered to help her friend in training her staff free of charge and the result of that training was exceptional.
Of course, her friend referred her to other people and that was how she started getting more calls and then more money. She still has her full time job but she does her training during the weekend. Now, she is expanding to offering consulting services and she is also looking to take her training online.
It all started with one thing she knows extremely well – customer service. There is something that you know how to do that you can bring you money without having to let go of your full time job. I love to write. Initially, all I used to do was write articles and create magazines. After a while, I decided to increase my skills by learning about social media. Once I did this, opportunities to manage social media accounts for different brands opened up to me. As I built my expertise, I started receiving invitations to speak at events. The first few were free but now I get paid to speak and to train people about social media. Now, I have created a platform where I coach people who want to learn how to write commercially and we offer various writing courses and training. That is another source of income. I have also collaborated with people on different projects and I earn something from the execution of those projects.
I could go on and on but the basic idea is to find what you’re good at or what you can learn and begin to build on it from there. Be sensitive to what people need and see how you can meet those needs by creating an outstanding service. Take note of the word ‘outstanding’. You also need to be collaborating with other people. I will write more about this in future articles.
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