Side Hustling in HR & Monetizing Your Skills…Without Cheating On Your Day Job! 

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by Alan Collins

If you ever decide to have an extramarital affair, there are some unspoken rules to abide by.

One, you sure as hell don’t want your partner to find out…unless you have a death wish.

Two, you’re probably going to have to fabricate stories about your whereabouts from time to time to cover up your liaisons.

And three, unless you’re a total scumbag, you’ll probably need to figure out how to cope with the emotional guilt of lying, being unfaithful and leading a double life.

Clearly, the decision to do this is going to complicate things for you at home.

And while I’ve never cheated myself, I’m guessing that making these kinds of personal changes just scare most people to death.

Interestingly, many HR people seem to feel the same way about doing side hustling in HR, while holding down their full time day job.

To them, it’s like cheating on their spouse.

They believe it requires them to lie, be disloyal to their organization and compromise their morals and ethics.

I don’t agree.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

A part-time side hustle or monetizing your HR skills on the side — like doing a few consulting projects, coaching clients or running a networking or job search group — can be a terrific step in your career.

It can:

  • Provide a welcome supplement to your income.
  • Build your skill in tackling different business challenges.
  • Enhance your career exposure, career visibility and marketability
  • Expand your network of contracts and advocates
  • Open the door to other potential HR job opportunities.
  • Help you test whether gradually transitioning into full-time HR consulting is a career move you should consider.

So there are tons of benefits.

Just so you know, this is my philosophy…

I’m a strong proponent of NOT doing anything
at all to jeopardize your HR day job if it’s currently
your main source of income.

And until the day arrives that you are ready to replace it,
it pays your bills and is your security net right now,
so you should never risk screwing it up.

Hopefully, that makes sense.

But make no mistake about it, if you want to side hustle, without putting your main hustle at risk — you can.

However, only if you follow four simple, common sense unwritten rules — and they are:

  1. Don’t make assumptions.
  2. Don’t compromise and disparage.
  3. Avoid “borrowing.”
  4. Answer the question: “Should I hide what I’m doing?”

Let’s break down each one of these in detail.

Don’t Make Assumptions.

What this means is that you should know what kind of organization you’re working for – don’t assume you know.

Let’s face facts.  Many big, traditional “old school” organizations probably don’t share your enthusiasm for doing any kind of part-time side gig. In fact, most believe they own you and your HR expertise, as long as you work there.

They demand your 100% loyalty…on and off the job, 168 hours per week…even though they’re not going to provide you that kind of loyalty in return.

By paying you an annual salary and other benefits, they feel are entitled to “first dibs” on your time and your ideas.

But that’s just one type of organization.

There are other more enlightened, “new school” firms. Lots of them, growing by the day. In these types of companies, performance rules.

In their view, they don’t care what you do, as long as you kick butt on your job…and as long as you don’t violate the company’s code of conduct.

In these companies, employees are highly engaged away from work.

Some teach in the evenings.
Some run small unrelated businesses on the side.
Some actively participate on Boards and in non-profit organizations.
Some coach and do non-competitive consulting.

Here’s the point: You must know what kind of company you’re working for!  Is it the old school or the new school type?

If you’re not sure, check your employee handbook, your legal department or the corporate policy on moonlighting and running side businesses.

Also, examine any employment documents you may signed when you began working in case you have agreed not to work with anything that conflicts or competes with your employer. Continue reading here…

Original: Success in HR

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