Are "side gigs" a distraction or diversification?


Do you allow your team to openly discuss their side work or projects?

What is your position on tolerating or even encouraging side opportunities?

Do you consider side work to be a negative influence within the organization or positive? Why?

Gig Economy
Income Stream Strategies
Oren Birks, MBA
17 months ago

5 answers


It today’s world you need to be open and supportive of side projects.

First, they’re going to do it anyway.

Second and more importantly if you embrace it, they’ll be appreciative of it which will create loyalty among the employee.

Third, you want your employee to learn and have broader horizons. And you want team members who innovative and ambitious.

lastly, often their side project might end up being helpful to your company.

Hope this helps.

Lee R. Roth
17 months ago
Excellent insight Lee. I agree and I actively encourage staff that have a hobby or interest to explore it and it if is monetized great. I feel that side gigs, or side hustles, can help round out a professional and provide outlets for alternative stresses or energy. CPA's who teach rock climbing on weekends for example, - Oren 17 months ago

I fully agree, Lee R. Roth. My only build on your remarks is, as usual, everything is a matter of balance and reasonableness. If someone is clearly spending a lot of time and energy on a side hustle it could cause others to be concerned that the employee is either not completely satisfied with their "day job" or that they are spending time on it during their day job hours...which would be a problem

Michael Fruhling
17 months ago
I agree that when a side hustle infringes on the primary job it can then become an issue for management. When I discuss this with my staff and new employees it is framed as an allowed activity as long as their core duties are done exceptionally well and there are no conflicts. Perception across the team is less of an issue because management is aware and monitoring. - Oren 17 months ago

I think it's important to let employees explore other passions/side projects. Often in creative roles this lets an employee explore other areas of creative interest and can often bring new ideas to their full time/part time gig with you. It also aids in employee development. I've seen a ton of employee flourish at their core job when they are giving some room to explore #sidehustles.

Whether you employee someone full time or part time there should be clear rules around conflict of interest with any side gigs. There should always be a conversation between a manager and employee around expectations. I always tell my employees they need to be preforming their regularly assigned tasks at 100%.

Michael A
17 months ago
Could not agree more. I have personally watched average and somewhat disconnected employees excel when they are unafraid to explore their passion outside of their primary employment. Supporting and encouraging, with reasonable boundaries and clear expectations as the primary employer, can build a strong relationship and fierce loyalty. - Oren 17 months ago
❤️ - Michael 17 months ago

Eventually the side gigs impact the actual work in the long haul... But unfortunately you cannot do anything about it as the staff will get into it whether you like it or not

Jack Dom
17 months ago
I have yet to experience a significant negative impact for staff that do have side interests. Many times I find additional creativity and loyalty are the result. - Oren 17 months ago
i hope you will never get the impact.. best of luck - Jack 17 months ago

Are side projects a distraction or diversification?


They are both. What people do outside of work on their own time is their own business, as long as it doesn't impact their job performance (unless you're a pilot, or something like that). I would expect them to do those projects outside of work hours.

If someone is unhappy at work, having a side gig can often spur creativity, happiness, and energy. Life is about having multiple revenue streams, not just one 9 to 5 job for a lifetime. It keeps things interesting.

Karen Bluestein
17 months ago

Have some input?