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Use Your 9-to-5 Job To Build Your Own Business

In a small hangout, I was asked, "So, where do you work?" Without thinking too long about it, I said "I am an employed-entrepreneur." Lol. I didn't want to talk about the company where I work without also referring to my own business.

Well, you might call that being selfish. But, since that provided me an opportunity to talk about the two - my job and my business, I'd call it wisdom. Isn't that what they call 'killing two birds with a stone'? 😀

Managing Your Own Business While You Have A Job

If you’re an entrepreneur at heart, it can be frustrating to wake up and get on into the traditional 9-to-5 job, feeling like you’re just biding time, saving money . . . and helping another man build his dream.

Yeah, I feel that way sometimes. But, I calm my worries because I know I am working a 9-to-5 job to build up capacity for my own business.

What I plan to do is use this time to optimize my skillset, expand my network, discover new business strategies, get ideas off the ground, and think of a creative way to execute my exit plan into the next one.

Oops. I hope my boss is not reading this. Lol.

You really don't have to quit your job just yet.

I quit my day job a little too early and I learned a lot from that experience. I'll come back to that later.

For now, let's focus on this. Use your job to start and grow your business.

It is refreshing to know that we can eat our cakes and have it. You can work a 9-5 on someone else's business and work 5-9 on your business (side hustle).

That's a lot of work. Yeah.

We have to pay the price to get the prize.

I hope you find these well-researched and practical tips helpful . . .

Be Committed To A Schedule

Be a schedule freak. Wake up early, and schedule.

Schedule time for anything you dream about doing while you’re “stuck at work” during the day: writing, reading, exercising, brainstorming business ideas, meditating, or spending time with family -- whatever makes you happy.

For example, I schedule posts to manage my social media, which takes a lot of the weight off my shoulders in the long run.

Have A Time Table

Set aside some time EVERY DAY to invest in your business. Treat this time like a doctor’s appointment; you just can’t cancel it. You MUST work whether tired or not.

When you’re working try to make the most of your time. Rather than just reading through emails, THINK.

Don't look at it as your hobby. All of us have hobbies like cooking, writing, reading, dancing, etc. But we don't sets goals with our hobbies, with targets and deadlines. We don't rigorously adhere to them. So, If it's a business to you, treat it as such.

I have a timetable for my business (writing, voicing, hosting) and I hold myself accountable to them.

Know Your Peak Period

Know which time of day you're mentally at your best and make it the time you spend on your business.

For me, both my critical thinking ability and creativity become pretty worthless after 9:00pm, so I prefer to get up at between midnight (and again at 3:15am) to start early on my side business before heading off to work.

Be selfish and give your passion the best part of your day.

Multi Task A Lot More

Figuring out how to balance work and home life with your business can be tricky, but it is doable.

Lump your activities together - both business and everyday routines.

For instance, I don't drive to work yet. So I take advantage of the time on the bus to read up helpful posts, reply relevant emails, draft an article or listen to inspiring podcasts on my way to work.

Some work can be done without a desk and a laptop.

Invest In Your Strength

For me, I know that I can tell a good story (using my experience) through a blog post, email, or on social media, that's my basis for connecting with people here, so I focus on that ability. That's largely why I chose to work in an industry that requires that ability.

When it comes to content marketing and advertising -  on the side of my day job - I am already harnessing the skills.

Learn How To Run A Business

Volunteer for assignments in different areas of the business, ask for more training, take a real “stretch” project, get exposure to new teams, and learn as much as you can.

I did this in my place of assignment during NYSC and got more than a year of radio presentation experience in addition to my accounting role. When I started Voice-over Production, I incorporated the skills I learnt there. I am doing it again at my current job.

Learn all you can at your job and about the business. When you eventually move fully to launching your own business, you’ll have figured almost everything out, and you’ll be glad you took the time to learn from a company that was already up-and-running when you had the chance.

Use All Benefits

Take full advantage of your employee benefits. If your company gets discounts at the restaurant, go; if you get extra healthcare benefits, use them. If they give free commute to and from the office, by all means, use that. It may be a while until you see those kind of perks again.

Use everything your job gives you. Leave no stone unturned. (picture me pointing a figure at you while saying that).

Build Your Network

Use the fact that you have a job to network like crazy. Having a job is actually great, because you interact regularly with other employees, customers, vendors, even competitors.

Network inside the company as well as outside. Try to meet people who can be potential employees, potential customers, potential contractors, potential advisors and mentors, and potential investors.

These connections are all potentially valuable. You know how it goes with networking: you’ll meet someone who knows someone who knows someone who is looking for a solution to the problem your business can solve.

Who knows, your boss might even become a client or could put you up with investors (if s/he likes you) and your colleagues could become collaborators.

So work well enough so they can always remember you even after you leave.

Join a network

It’s difficult to get motivated when the only person who knows if you didn’t do something is you, you need to be accountable to someone else.

A little encouragement goes a long way. We all need an extra push to keep going.

Join a team of people who are also running their own business. You can meet up with them to share your struggles, discuss your progress and get encouragement.

Re-introducing The Amplify Network (TAN)

The Amplify Network (TAN) is a Christian Creative Network. We are a close knit who help one another stay in track with "amplifying" our gifts, talents and businesses.

We'll be having our first meet this Saturday. Excited!

(For more details CLICK HERE. Perhaps you are interested, indicate in the comment box.)


I thought I was selfish until I met someone who refer to his business as the main job, and his 9-5 job as the side hustle.

I think that's fantastic oh. 😂

There's something awesome about running your own business while still keeping up with a 9-5. You feel like a super-hero. 😎

How are you combining your job with your side hustle? What better way to pursue your dreams while working for somebody else?

Written by Nwamaka Ajaegbu 
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