I have been preaching the side gig as the new way to view careers to my Connecticut career counseling clients for years. Most Connecticut residents live in suburbs, particularly those with the resources to seek out career counseling. This has a big effect on how one views the jobs-career revolution that has occurred over the last decade. My career counseling clients from cities – those that Skype me from places outside Connecticut and those that see me from Stamford, New Haven, Hartford, and, to a lesser degree, New London and Norwich – have visible evidence of how income generation and career tracks have radically changed.
Those in Connecticut cities see that many people have side gigs, multiple streams of income, and/or work part time on entrepreneurial projects. The article link focuses on 20-30 somethings in career mode for good reason. They have been most effected by the changes. But the educational lessons contained in the article should be for all ages.
Here are some lessons:
1.) The percentage of people who will have 1 career has and will continue to drop. For that reason, you should affirmatively seek out building your next career and/or job prior to being forced to do so. My most calm career counseling clients have come to me while they have had a job and were not in danger (at least in their minds!) of losing the job soon. This requires having a different mindset and I suppose one of the reasons my work has been helpful to clients. I’m someone who did the switch (lawyer to education entrepreneur). So whether I say anything clever or not, my clients know that I actually accomplished what they hope to accomplish.
2.) The percentage of people who need/choose to have multiple streams of income has and will continue to increase. For all those that I provide help in building businesses and entrepreneurial projects, I urge the embrace of “multiple streams of income.” Again, simply because I lived it – I built The Learning Consultants, while teaching college classes and consulting to educational start-ups – I usually give the “how-to” for our clients who have the need to bring in come from more than one source.
3.) Embrace the thought that you could actually build your career. This is an odd one for most everyone who has been educated with the old world of work mindset of “I’m becoming a [current existing job/career title]. While there were a few tutoring companies as well as educational consultants and career counselors, I never met anyone from my generation who would have said: “I am going to create an educational consultancy focused on helping families help their children and then I’m going to build a career counseling company.” But I did so. You can do the same with whatever thoughts you have about your skills could lead to meeting the market.