Should CEOs Worry about a Side Hustle (or Get Their Own)?

For some people, a side hustle is a necessity. A recent Bankrate study noted that 54% of those who have a side hustle use the money earned to pay monthly expenses instead of treating themselves on disposable income items or adding to their savings. It used to be embarrassing to admit that you had two jobs. Today it is a way to demonstrate work ethic and grit.

According to Nick Loper, founder of Side Hustle Nation, “The fact is, it costs more to live than it did a generation ago, education and housing [costs] have risen faster than income and people are turning to side-hustles to bridge the gap.”

Bankrate also reports that 44 million Americans have a side hustle. The majority of these are not meant to replace a full time job. They are a way for people to develop a new skill by being hands on instead of just taking classes for professional development.

Other reasons include pursuing a passion or hobby, or using your free time to do what you already do on a freelance basis. A side hustle can help you enhance your abilities by expanding your scope beyond your full time job. It also gives you a great opportunity to grow your network and develop new relationships.

Research from CareerBuilder shows that:

  • Nearly a third (32%) of workers have side hustles
  • 35% of women and 28% of men have side hustles
  • Of those workers 35 and under, more than 4 out of 10 (41%) have a side hustle, compared to 27% of workers older than 35
  • African American workers (46%) and Hispanic workers (40%) are more likely than White (29%) and Asian (26%) workers to have a side hustle
  • 1 in 4 workers making more than $75k and 1 in 5 workers making more than $100k have a side hustle
  • 67% of workers with a side hustle do not want to turn their side gig into their day job

Even CEOs have side hustles. David Solomon, the CEO at Goldman Sachs is also a DJ, spinning dubstep at clubs around the world. Per Jake Siewert, a Goldman Sachs spokesperson, “David’s always believed that having a wide range of outside interests leads to a balanced life and makes for a better career. He’s preached that regularly to younger employees in the firm and tries to lead by example.”

Another popular option for CEOs looking for a side hustle is to join a company board. Some may see this as odd, but it grows your existing network and helps you understand and solve problems outside of your own business. It can further develop your perspective and improve your leadership skills.

Rather than worry about whether side hustles are impacting your business, consider if you are providing an environment where your team (and their teams) are able to do their best work and feel they can use their free time however they choose without worrying. To learn more about creating a high performing culture, send us a note.