You might be getting a pay raise in the next half year, but probably not. Unless you have a consuming 9 to 5 (consider yourself very lucky) you ought to consider a second stream of cash-only income to augment your pitiful paycheck.
What to do? What to do?
First, consider every possible second job you could have. You might be a wannabe docent during the week, but why not pet-sit neurotic westies on the weekends while their owners travel? Breaking into new circles might have unforeseen networking benefits, too.
Look at the $ angle and be creative:
- If you aced your AP tests, consider teaching groups of kids (4?) for $80 an hour for 2 hours on Saturdays. That' a quick hundred and sixty bucks.
- Do you like home design/improvements? Offer to help your banker buddy pick a great room color and paint their space for a buck fifty and five beers. Room painting can be cathartic and the creative element of designing the space will be cool, too.
- Be a middleman. Help your artist buddies get their work out there. Talk to coffee shop and bar owners to see if they want sweet free art on display in their joints. Set up a profit-sharing agreements for art that gets sold off the wall and take a little of the top for yourself. Everybody wins.
- Offer to scan your buddy's mom's old family photos. Help her out by creating a super hi-res photo archive and then tuck them away in acid-free paper and seal them in plastic. That way the kiddies can still view and share great grandpa's baptism pics and the originals are safe. Look at the hours it takes and charge at least $15 an hour. See if her friends want the same thing done and become a personal archivist on weekends. You'll get better at it while your reputation grows and so does your hourly rate.
- Consider second jobs that might actually help you professionally. If you work in PR consider advising individuals and small growing firms with basic tips about their webites/events etc. If you work in accounting consider helping your entrepreneur buddies with some weekend lessons on cash flow analysis and exit strategies. If youwork in fashion, find some bored rich chicks and collaborate with a tailor to make them custom accessories and clothes. They can pay for you time/talent and help you build a resume.
- If you are totally type-A, consider being an organizing consultant (a growing field!) and help people manage their stuff by getting rid of excess and encouraging few strategic investments at The Container Store.
- Mainly, be useful. If you are artistic, design custom baby announcements and shoot the kid, too. New parents are too busy for that stuff.