Let’s declare 2016 the year you find success in freelance. Seriously. There’s no reason why each of us shouldn’t have a side gig, or, “side hustle”. #sidehustle16
Here’s why. A side hustle…
- Is lucrative (cha-ching)
- Lets you build your skill set by focusing on areas where YOU (not your boss) want to improve
- Lets you grow your brand by networking in a way you couldn’t with a typical 9-5
- Is a career insurance policy (With a thriving side hustle, if you have to leave your day job, you won’t be in a huge panic.)
- Gives you the flexibility you crave to live life on your own terms. Don’t want to wake up until 10? Don’t. Hate the glare of fluorescent lights and feel most productive when working from a coffee shop? DO IT.
- Lets you flex your entrepreneurial muscles and learn more by doing than you would in years of business school
(Pssst! If you are already convinced that freelancing is the way to go, but you’re not sure you have the skills you need, sign up for our totally free 10-Day Tech Term Bootcamp before you do anything else. Tech is an open door, and possibly the BEST field for earning money even as a total beginner.)
These aren’t freelancing tropes. This is the new reality. Levo League called the side hustle the biggest career trend of 2015.
And yet, even though it’s a big trend, you can’t just snap your fingers and make it happen for yourself.
Side hustles are TOTALLY DOABLE (just check out these 25 sites dedicated to finding freelance work!), but you need to set yourself up for success.
For starters, you need to build a knowledge acquisition plan and start now. Devour books, take online classes, and talk to people who have had their own side gig and done it WELL.
(Don’t believe me? Check out this webinar on Transitioning To a New Career, where I talk with Levo about MY go-to method for changing careers. Hint: knowledge acquisition plays a HUGE role.)
GROAN, DEE, STOP. I DON’T HAVE TIME TO DO ALL THIS! I’ve done a few freelance gigs already and have not been able to transition to something reliable and consistent. If I have to take online classes and read 50 books in 2016, it’s just NOT going to happen.
I hear you.
And I realize this is a common painpoint. “Studying” for your new side hustle can seem like such a big job we just procrastinate and procrastinate until BAM. A year has passed. I did this too! And I catch myself still doing it sometimes.
If you are serious about starting a profitable side hustle in 2016, do what I did: Make preparing for your side hustle part of your existing routine (rather than trying a complete overhaul—drastic change is a common reason New Year’s resolutions fail!)
And the best way to do that? Podcasts. (I know—they seem to be the answer to everything!)
Before I read a single book about freelance, before I talked to even ONE friend to help get me on my own path, I listened to podcasts. TONS of them. In fact, I started my very own side hustle years ago armed with a few articles, a couple of apps to help me do things like invoice a client and track my hours…and podcasts. Tons and tons of podcasts. That’s it.
The podcasts I listened to while driving, walking my dog, cooking, or doing laundry helped me launch into the freelance space and STAY there beyond one or two clients. They taught me TONS—they were filled with knowledge, case studies, interviews and tips. Podcasts focused on building my web presence, marketing my brand, deciding how much to charge and even what to charge for. Podcasts filled with recommendations of apps to use to support my business, interviews and retrospectives with people who had succeeded or failed with their initial side hustles (and WHY) and much much MUCH more.
But it can be hard to find those podcasts. You can spend hours listening to the first 15 minutes of every episode with the word “entrepreneur” in the title, only to end up as frustrated as you are when you’re trying to decide what to watch on Netflix.
That’s why I’m sharing these 25 awesome podcasts with you, so you won’t have to waste hours scrounging around for podcast GOLD that can help you launch and sustain your side hustle.
If you’re like I was—busy, frazzled but VERY eager to carve out your own path—build these 25 podcasts into your routine and get ready to start freelancing in 2016! #sidehustle16.
And remember! If you are pumped to start freelancing but don’t have the skills you need, tech is an open door (and one of the best fields for making money FAST, even as a beginner). Check out our totally free 10-Day Tech Term Bootcamp to find out if tech is the career-changing juice you need. You’ll get the easy, step-by-step lessons sent straight to your inbox. :)
1. Glambition – Ali Brown
Considered the top podcast for women entrepreneurs, Glambition is hosted by Ali Brown, who created the podcast when she realized that women were rewriting the rules for entrepreneurial success. The show airs every 2 weeks and features inspirational interviews with trailblazing women across industries.
2. Let’s make mistakes – Mike Monteiro and Jessie Char
Mike Monteiro and Jessie Char host this hilarious, honest, biting podcast you can’t afford to miss. The title says it all, but Let’s Make Mistakes is sort of my unofficial guide to life. It will be yours too. Monteiro and Char answer questions like, “Does my college education matter when hunting for a job?” and discuss key topics like conference codes of conduct, what it’s ACTUALLY like to lead a team or an organization (no BS here), and more.
3. Tim Ferris Show– Tim Ferris
Tim’s podcast is a who’s who of influential business guests. When he’s not interviewing the likes of BJ Novak, Sophia Amoruso, Lisa Randall or Phil Libin, he’s providing tips on tech tools, efficiency, and productivity.
4. The Accidental Creative – Todd Henry
Todd Henry’s podcast is all about how to hone in on and leverage your brilliance. Henry is a champion of creativity and authenticity and his podcast always leaves me with one or two deep questions that I marinate on during the course of the week.
5. 99U – Behance
Behance’s 99U is a Ted Talk-style podcast that covers a range of topics from salary negotiation to graphic design tips and tricks. This is a great podcast to stay on top of web design trends. Check out the videos on their website too.
Skillcrush founder and CEO Adda Birnir introduced me to this podcast and I’m hooked. If you want to run a business—be it as a freelancer, a start-up founder or a manager at a well established company—you can’t miss this podcast. Topics hit on every pain point you’ll encounter as you grow (you= yourself AND your business), and there’s a wealth of knowledge available via interviews with a diverse range of entrepreneurs.
7. The Freelance Web – The Freelancer’s Union
I heard about this podcast from our friends at The Freelancer’s Union and I’m pretty new to it. So far it seems like it’s your two experienced freelancing BFFs talking about their projects, lessons learned, and tips for success. Great if you’re just getting started in the world of freelance!
8. Smart Passive Income – Pat Flynn
At the risk of seeming lazy, I’m just going to quote Pat’s description of his own podcast, as it’s the perfect way to sum it up in 24 words: “I’m the crash test dummy of online business, sharing what works (and what doesn’t) so you know exactly how to build your business better.”
9. Design Matters – Debbie Millman
No matter what your career plans, understanding design is a MUST if you ask me. Debbie Millman’s podcast is a series of short master classes about high-level design topics.
10. A Little Bird Told Me – Philippa & Lorrie
I love the approachable titles of this podcast, like: “How to self publish without embarrassing yourself” and “How to get your clients to stop bugging you.” While this is a great podcast for all freelancers, it focuses specifically on freelance writers, editors, and publishers. Lots of good stuff here.
11. The introvert Entrepreneur – Beth Buelow
Advice, resources, and inspiration about business and life for the introverts among us. Beth Buelow’s podcast focuses on self-promotion, moving past fear, finding your voice, and being a leader.
12. This Is Your Life – Michael Hyatt
This Is Your Life is all about leadership. Episodes focus on reconsidering the idea of being a perfectionist, escaping overwhelm, wowing clients, and setting goals. Occasionally, the podcast also introduces you to new tech tools and shares tech best practices and tips.
13. Social Triggers Insider – Derek Halpern
If you want to market your business, score customers, and sell your product, Social Triggers is a must. Derek’s podcast, newsletters, and programs are a no-nonsense, unapologetic how-to for generating business. Lots of it.
14. Ambitious Entrepreneur – Annemarie Cross
Host Annemarie Cross wants to make it easier for you to cross the finish line. The Ambitious Entrepreneur podcast seeks to help you build the business of your dreams without the frustration and pain. Cross focuses on helping you achieve your goals via her breakthrough strategies.
15. Foundation – Kevin Rose
Digg founder Kevin Rose’s podcast focuses on interviews with tech founders in the Silicon Valley space. If you’re looking to stay on the pulse of the startup scene, this is the podcast to subscribe to.
16. Product Hunt
Want to stay on top of trends? Are you a product nerd? This podcast’s for you. Product Hunt is filled to the brim with all sorts of topics—career strategies, inspirational interviews, the list goes on. Their Maker Stories episodes are in-depth conversations with the most influential people in tech, culture, and politics, and I leave each episode with a list of things I want to read, watch, try IMMEDIATELY.
17. Solopreneur Hour – Michael O’Neal
This podcast is great for those of us who want to go our own way. If you need honest, scrappy business advice and coaching, this one’s for you bootstrapper.
18. Death Sex Money – Anna Sale
This WNYC podcast is a recent favorite. Hosted by Anna Sale, the podcast dares to ask the types of questions that aren’t part of your typical media fare. While not directly related to launching a business or landing your first client, listening to this podcast will give you all sorts of feels and inspire you to make a difference.
19. This Girl Means Business – Carrie Green
Carrie Green is the founder of the female entrepreneur’s association and her podcast focuses on helping you understand what the heart and soul of your business is, how you want to make people feel, and infusing all that into your business strategy. Really great for folks who are toying with the idea of launching their own business but feel totally scared or lost.
20. Off the charts – Nathalie Lussier
Nathalie’s podcast focuses on increasing critical business metrics. Her interviews and tips are approachable and immediately applicable. Each short podcast features an interview, resources, tips, and totally do-able advice to take your business one step forward.
If you’ve got startup podcast overload and just want one or two well-selected ones to inspire you and help you in your path, This Week in StartUps is a good add to your list. It’s got all the interviews you could want, plus news from the start-up world.
22. Ashish Walia Show – Ashish Walia
This is a good one for all the hustlers out there. Ashish interviews entrepreneurs, investors, and startup veterans to learn all their secrets. There’s some great advice here no matter where you’re at career-wise.
23. Mom Biz Solutions – Laura Galloway
Laura Galloway’s podcast provides coaching on living life on your own terms. The podcast walks you through entrepreneurship, networking, branding, and more—all the while focusing on helping you figure out what you want, charting your own path, then walking it.
24. Double Your Freelancing – Brennan Dunn
Focused on the business aspect of freelance, Double your Freelancing is all about taking your freelance practice to the next level. If you want to dive into building your audience, doubling your rate, and running a virtual team, this one’s for you.
I love that the Freelance Podcast focuses specifically on people who have a 9-to-5 and freelance on the side, or on people who want to get into freelance for the first time. The podcast aims to help get you to launch a successful, full-time freelance gig. There are a wealth of tips here—definitely don’t miss this one.
Don’t wait around and HOPE that your freelance dreams will come true in 2016. Start listening to these podcasts NOW and get ready to launch a profitable, life-changing side hustle in the New Year. #sidehustle16
PS – If you are pumped to start freelancing but don’t have the skills you need, tech is an open door (and one of the best fields for making money FAST, even as a beginner). Check out our totally free Tech Term Bootcamp to find out if tech is the career-changing juice you need. :)
Dee is a fun-loving instructor with diverse tech experience across Fortune 500 companies, early-stage start-ups, government agencies & non-profits. Dee works at mobile product design studio Funsize, in Austin Texas where she lives with her husband, 2 border collie mixes, & 2 cats.