On Wednesday night, Cash Flow Club hosted a panel in the Chiles Hall of Fame room on perfecting the “side hustle.” A side hustle is a business or skill someone works on in addition to their main job or schooling that brings in extra cash. A crowd of roughly 20 people was in attendance to hear from Portland Gear CEO and founder Marcus Harvey and UP students who have perfected the side hustle. Other members of the panel included students Lily D’Amico, Michael Williamson, Hunter Crawford, Chris Fernandez, Chastin Kekahuna and John Stone.
The panel highlighted five main ideas to take away from the night:
Don’t be afraid to start your own business/side hustle
The reason that many students don’t start their businesses is because of the amount of hard work that it takes to get a business going. The panelists stressed that no fear when starting your business venture is key in having a successful side hustle business.
“Everything's a challenge when you're starting out,” Crawford, a senior accounting major, said.
Crawford's side hustle is researching hot-selling products and shipping them from China, then selling them on his own ecommerce site, on Ebay and on Amazon.
Don’t be afraid to fail
One thing many student entrepreneurs forget is that failure happens to everyone. It is important to not get discouraged if you run into an obstacle while you are working towards your goal. Mistakes happen to everyone, and determination is necessary in learning from them and moving past them.
“Just start something,” D’Amico, a senior economics major, said. “Make something. Fail hard.”
D'Amico's side hustle is starting a backpack equipment company, called Pac Back. The company's first product, the Trio, will be coming out this Thursday on Kickstarter.
Use an .edu email address
If you are looking for a quick response to emails, use your UP email address. Whether it be getting through to companies, organizations or professionals, people are more likely to help you out quickly if they see that you are a student.
“If you want to do something fast, use your .edu email and you’ll get a response,” Stone, a senior entrepreneurship and innovation management major, said.
Utilize social media
To make your side hustle thrive, use of social media is necessary. The vast majority of young people have some form of social media. Whether it’s Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, having a social media presence can help market your business.
Go after your passion
The most significant factor in starting a side hustle business is personal passion. The more you care about the product or service you provide, the better it is going to be. Kekahuna, a senior operations and technology management major, is passionate about web design and found ways to do web design for clients.
“It’s all about how much you want to do it and how much you want to put into it,” Kekahuna said.