Should you find a part-time job? Does it make sense to fill up your spare time by working more hours? Is that extra money worth chasing after?
I was looking through my archive and I realized that I covered the topic of finding a part time job in the past. I wrote about the idea of a double income and looking at a second job.
What caught my eye was a comment on that post from reader Steve:
“I currently tutor as a second job. After this school year I will be done tutoring for the most part. I’m looking into a new part-time business opportunity that I just found out about. None of my friends work second jobs, so why do I?
At first I needed the money to save for a condo down payment. Now, the money is going towards retirement savings that were missed while I was building up the down payment.
A second job doesn’t force you to work 16 hour days. I work an extra 8 hours a week. I have no problem with someone working a couple extra hours a week in order to spend a little more money. You mention missing out on time spent having fun, but I can argue that with a little extra money to spend, you can have even more fun. There are pluses and minuses.
A few key points that are missing. What you make in your second job is extremely important. If you are compensated well enough, a second job is very worthwhile even if you don’t need the money for a specific immediate purpose. Also, the power of compound interest is greatly enhanced by investing early in your working career. Working a second job to be able to invest can lead to financial security at a much earlier age and even greater free time later in life.”
That’s an interesting take on working a side job.
Clair wrote in with:
“No matter what the second job pays, it’s the same as the first job – you make money based on how many hours you put in. Therefore, you’re limited to how many hours a week you can work.
If you’re going to have a second job, you might as well make it your own business, and make it something where you can leverage your time. For example, be a manager of others in your own enterprise, or create a product of your own. Neither of these return fixed dollars per hour worked.
It’s bad enough working to make money for someone else in your regular job. It seems to make sense that your second “job” would be working for yourself.”
As a young professional or an entrepreneur, is it worth finding a part-time job?
There are two scenarios here:
Scenario #1: You graduated from college, found a job in your field, and are working your way up the ranks. You save a little bit of money, but have to fork over far too much of your income towards paying back your student loans and basic living expenses. To be able to save some more money you start to contemplate finding a part-time job.
Scenario #2: You’re working on getting your own business off the ground. You’re making progress, but you’re not going to be surpassing Mark Zuckerberg’s income any time soon. You have expenses and want to invest more money into your business. You start to think about the idea of finding a part-time job to help you fund your business.
In both scenarios, is it worth finding a part-time job after you’ve already gone through the process of finding a job after college? Yes.
Why’s it worth finding a part-time job in your 20s?
You can make more money and beef up your savings account. As a 20-something you likely have bold financial goals for the next few years. You might want to save up for a mortgage down-payment or for that new car that you’ve had your eye on. On the other hand, you might be looking to crush your student debt and be debt-free for once and for all. Regardless of your financial goals, you can benefit from the additional income that a part-time gig would provide you with.
On top of saving up more money, you open up opportunities by working another job. By working at a new job you meet new people, expand your network, and increase your chances of running into people that can be helpful with your journey and vice versa.
For example, my friend found his current position with a credit union by serving coffee to the branch manager on a daily basis. He had a few minutes between the order of the coffee and making it to discuss financial topics with the manager. They eventually got into discussing his education and background. After a few months he was offered a job at the credit union. From there he moved up the ranks and he now works closely with that manager that he met while serving coffee at Starbucks.
As an ambitious 20-something, it never hurts to open up more doors for yourself. Why limit yourself? Sometimes you’re going to have to get off the couch and find another job to make more money.
A final benefit of a part-time job is that you create additional security for yourself. In a world where job security is rare it helps to plan for unforeseen circumstances.
Before we part ways today I really wanted to look at the flip side of working a side gig.
Are there negatives to finding a side gig?
You risk fatigue with working long hours. You could easily find a part-time job with benefits, but you always risk being tired and hurting your performance with your business or at your full-time career. My only advice here is to work within your limits because nobody knows yourself like you do. If you’re part-time job is ruining your sleep and hurting your performance, then it’s not worth it.
At the end of the day, I’ll always praise the idea of finding a part-time job. You have nothing to lose because you can always just quit if you feel overwhelmed. You also should have plenty of energy because you’re still youthful enough to run off a few hours of sleep.
Have you found yourself a part-time gig yet?