What To Do When Your Job Isn’t Paying You Enough

Over the last seven years, the median American income has been on a slow decline from $56,436 to $51,939. While the average yearly raise of 3% may be compelling to some, others are scrambling for ways to to drastically increase their income.  The average American debt is increasing greatly while income is decreasing. That means, more Americans are looking for creative alternatives for additional income. In today’s economy, it’s not enough to simply work hard and hope for better wages. It is imperative to leverage your skills and talents in creative ways to make extra money. I call this being an employeepreneur.

Employeepreneurs are able to use their existing skills and find other outlets to gain extra income. Most people are supporting a full-time life using less than 5% of their skill set.  Consider the accountant who makes six figures or more analyzing data and crunching numbers. Though those are  small aspects of their skill set, the don’t represent everything they are capable of accomplishing.  Or consider the engineer who uses critical thinking, computer  software, and problem solving skills to design parts for offshore oil rigs.  These are critical skills to have, but don’t represent the other facets of the individual that may include administration, negotiation, or other skills. These other skills, if honed and marketed correctly, can prove to be  powerful assets to make well above the annual 3% raise that some employees have become accustomed to. A modern day employee must use their additional skills to maximize there income earning potential. Here are my suggestions for proven ways to do just that.

Blogging

Blogging has gone from a niche hobby to a multimillion dollar industry. It has catipulted former CEOs, college students and moms into full-time entrepreneurs. If launched and developed correctly, your expertise can be used to position yourself as an expert voice in the marketplace. Blogging gives you the flexibility to make money on your time, create an incredible following, and maximize the potential for passive income. If you have a particular subject that you are passionate about, consider creating a niche blog to articulate your thoughts about it.

How to Make Money

Blogging is for building a following and products are what will make you the real money. Unless you have hundreds of thousands of people coming to your blog every month, advertising traffic alone won’t be enough to generate a significant income. The products you develop and sale based on your personal expertise is where the real value of blogging comes in handy. By developing a consistent following, they will see you as an expert and consider buying the products you have for sale. Other ways you can make money blogging include sponsorships, affiliate links,  and product reviews (if you get paid to do them).

Consulting

Growing up, I never knew what a consultant actually did, it just sounded really cool to me. As I got older, I learned that consulting in niche industries could actually be big business. Consulting is simply getting paid to give expert advice on just about anything.  Technically, anyone could become a consultant if there is a need for the advice. Consulting gives you the perfect opportunity to take the skills you have developed for years and find people who are willing to pay you to advise them.  If you can find a problem that a group of people desperately need help fixing and you have the skills to do it, it could be a perfect opportunity for you to consult. Just make sure what you are consulting about  doesn’t compete with the company products and services you are working for.

How to Make Money

Consultants typically get paid per hour or with a monthly fee depending on how extensive the consulting is. They usually send a proposal of what they will do based on what the client needs and then perform those services while checking with the client throughout the process. The most common fear I hear from people about consulting is that they don’t know enough about anything to get paid to consult. We are all experts at something. We simply have to discover what people are willing to pay for. One thing I recommend is to keep a list of problems you solve everyday for someone else. At work, is there something that everyone in the office always depend on YOU to know how to do? Is there a topic that friends and family always ask your advice on?  Does something come easier for you that you noticed is very difficult for others around you? These could all be things that, with development, bring in income through consulting.

Writing

Whether it’s writing a book or an article for a publication , writing can be a really great way to make money. Don’t just think traditional writing however. You can get paid to write business plans, proposals,  financial statements and so much more. Anything that you have gotten paid to write on a regular basis could potentially be something someone would pay you to write for them. Did you write a winning grant proposal for a non-profit you formerly worked at? Your experience could be used in writing another one for a new organization. Do you get trade publications about your industry sent to your office? Perhaps you can submit an article to them detailing something that hasn’t been featured. Writing, like blogging positions you as an expert and positions you to be compensated you for what you have learned over the years.

How to Make Money

The first place to start making money writing is to review things you have already been paid to write. If there are documents you have written that have led a present or former company to generating income or landing a deal, those same skills could be used to do it for another company. Maybe you can consider writing proposals for smaller companies outside of your current employers competition. Again, make sure to review your company guidelines to ensure you aren’t doing anything that could endanger your employment. Websites like Fiverr  andTimeetc give you the advantage of writing and editing from home and they  help bring the clients to you. Freelancewriting.com has a great compilation of other freelance sites you can use to apply for paid gigs. Last, if you are looking to write a book, the best place to get it published for free is Createspace. You only get charged a percentage of every book sold.

The beautiful thing about being an employeepreneur is that you get to control how much or how little you make on the side. Unlike a regular job, you can grow your business as large as you like without any limits. Employees are increasingly looking for creative ways to use their skills to increase their income. These suggestions hopefully will give you the jumpstart you need to build a life of financial freedom.

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Posted in Career, Entrepreneurship.

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