Friday, December 14, 2018

Why Having a Side Hustle is Good For You

My life totally changed in 2007.   I was at the end of my tenure at a large retail company in IT and I was getting antsy.  I needed something different and thought there was more to life than going to a 9-to-5 job, go home and watch TV or blow time at the local bar sipping cheap beer talking about the drama at the 9-to-5 gig.

One day, I decided to go to a networking event at my alma mater just to try out something new and meet some different people.   At my first event, I knew I was in a different environment.   The other professionals in the room were positive, friendly and they all had something different.   They all seemed to have something they were passionnate about.   Most of them worked a 9-to-5, but it was what they were doing after 5pm that got them all excited and positive about what life will bring.

So what was it that got them all excited?   The side hustle!


In 2018, research has shown that more American millenials have a side hustle than ever before.  And it is not just millenials, baby boomers are doing it to, since they know the corporate world is in their rear view mirror.  The side hustles may be freelancing, teaching, doing Uber or starting a side business in real estate, network marketing or franchising.   Studies have shown that having a side hustle provides a lot of mental health benefits since it is something to look forward to and indulge in your entrepreneurial spirit.

Here are five benefits I have experienced since I have started my side hustles alongside my day job.

1. I have gained control of my life.

When you care deeply about your work as I do, it can be frustrating when you aren't able to call the shots or make an impact the leaves you feeling fulfilled.  This might be especially true if you feel stunted in a toxic culture, are miserable as the result of a bad boss, or are stuck in a situation where you simply don't have the freedom to do things the way you want to on the job.  I am familiar with these struggles firsthand, and by having my side hustles, I have the ability to call the shots and control my own domain.

2.  I have grown personally and professionally since I started my side hustles.

Professional learning opportunities are one of a job's best perks, whether you have teammates who teach you new skills or enjoy access to books and classes throught your company.   Sure, that was great back in the 1990s when I travelled all over the world for classes and seminars that my company paid for.   Unfortunately today, the information you need to know to do your job well might not always be of interest to you.   Having a side hustle that challenges you in an area you're genuinely interested in is exciting and give you a sense of purpose.  I have done my share of reading and have enrolled in numerous classes on digital marketing and health/wellness which are my passions.


3.  I am not so stressed anymore.

I am now doing something that makes me feel energized, proud, and confident that helps me combat any work worries at the 9-to-5.   If you are doing something you enjoy while making money doing it, you won't be as stressed as if all you do is go to your job and then go home and stress about your job.  Working on your passion brings you a much needed  mental break from day-job-related stress.


4. I am definitely not bored with life, far from it.

If you have been in your current role for a long time but love what you do but crave more variety?   A side hustle can you explore skills or talents that you enjoy but don't get to use nearly enough.  You should keep things interesting by pursuing a side hustle that is a complete departure from your usual work routine.   I have a great example.  By day I manage an IT organization at a health care company.  By evening, I run a digital marketing company as well as a health/wellness company.   I don't stop there.  I also run one of Boston's most successful business networking groups.   Like I mentioned, I am not bored.   Because of my side hustles, I come back to my 9-to-5 more refreshed.


5.  I have built some amazing relationships since I have started my side hustles.

Sure, your day job might introduce you to plenty of smart people in your industry but believe me when you explore your entrepreneurial pursuit, the new friends and contacts that you make are a whole different mindset.  The old saying is it is all about who you hang with.   Since I have tapped into my new social circles, I feel much more connected, fulfilled and happy.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

For Entrepreneurs - Top Tips for Networking this Holiday Season

Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way, oh what fun it is to have some prospects in my sleigh! Hey!

The Holiday Season is a time that brings people together, so enjoy it. Live, laugh and love during this holiday season. But what does this mean for you the entrepreneur? It simply means you should take advantage of any potential gatherings.
You will find that stores extend their hours over the holidays, why? Because it’s the busiest time of the year for them. And being an entrepreneur there is no exception, if anything this is your time to shine. With countless interactions, social events, celebrations and more – there has never been an easier time to start networking.
Your first conversation is your gateway to meeting more people. It can be intimidating, but with the right approach you can ease your way into. Don’t focus on the fear, for you introverts out there I know how intimidating this can be.
Here’s the key to networking during the holidays – confidence. You have nothing to be afraid of, because you have the key to something incredible; opportunity. You can offer people an opportunity. Whether it be to improve their health, to turn their spending into earning, to shop online and earn cashback, to make some extra money on the side in retailing, or to become an entrepreneur and run their own business – all opportunities. So, don’t go into this with a list of things you want, go into it with a list of things you can offer. The goal here should not be to desperately grow your business, it should be to listen. Simply, listen.
Be genuine and personal. You should not be focusing the same statement to each individual person, as this will come across “salesy”. Each person you approach should lead to a personal conversation that relates to their story.

1. Introduce yourself, and most importantly remember their name – during the conversation use it to address them a few times to develop a relationship.
2. Ask and care about what they do – this breaks the ice and allows them to welcome you into their world.
3. Be able to talk about topics other than work, so find a similar interest – not only is it a great way to keep the conversation going but it allows you to bond over something common.
4. Continue to maintain that confidence and start to think about what solution you may be able to offer them
5. Most importantly – the last 5 minutes of your conversation are what people remember the most, so when you are closing focus on what you want them to remember the most!

Monday, October 29, 2018

AIMC & DeSocial Connector Has a Solution For Everything

AIMC Owner/Principal and Mass Professional Networking founder Jeffrey DeSocio has built up a large network over the years and has a goal to have a solution for everything for his connections.  Jeffrey is an entrepreneur and has developed quite a roster of products and services that he can refer to for his connections.  The following is a great reference.  If you have any questions, you can contact Jeff at 508-922-1726 or jeff@aimcbizsolutions.com.


Product or Service                              Website/Contact Information
Digital Marketing, Business Services & Business Networking - AIMC Business Solutions
Responsive Website Solutions -  http://www.aimcbizsolutions.com - Build Web Site
Social Media Management  -  http://www.aimcbizsolutions.com - Digital Marketing Products
Mobile App Development - http://www.allinmycart.com ->Stores->TheAppCompany
Social Media Analysis - for Businesses - Contact Jeff at jeff@aimcbizsolutions.com for Appt.
BuilderAll - All-in-One Marketing - http://office.builderall.com/us/franchise/share/137634
Merchant Services for Businesses - Contact Jeff at jeff@aimcbizsolutions.com for Rate Quote
Technical Support/IT Security Services - http://www.allinmycart.com/matechteam
SHOP Local - Merchant Services - http://www.allinmycart.com/shoplocal/merchants
Business Networking/Personal Branding -Contact Jeff- jeff@aimcbizsolutions.com for Appt.






Health/ Wellness & Beauty - AIMC Health Solutions & AIMC Beauty
Isotonix Vitamin Supplements           http://www.aimchealthsolutions.com
TLS Weight Loss/Management          http://www.tlsslim.com/allinmycart
Motives Cosmetics & Skin Care        http://www.aimcbeauty.com





Online Shopping -including Consumables (Home/Auto Care), Travel & Entertainment
Online Shopping/ Cash Back  http://www.allinmycart.com - Main Page for Shopping Annuity
Global Shopping Site               http://global.shop.com/allinmycart - including 200+ countries
Home and Auto Care - SNAP  http://www.allinmycart.com - Search Auto or Home
Pet Health - Vitamins & Grooming  http://www.allinmycart.com - Search Pet Health
Baby Products - DNA Miracles   http://www.allinmycart.com - Search DNA Miracles
Groceries - Ethnic, Organic & GF  http://www.allinmycart.com - Search Groceries
Travel Discounts w/ Various Vendors   http://www.allinmycart.com - Click SHOP Travel
AIMC Music Entertainment & The Scene  http://www.getconquer.com/usa-allinmycart
Entrepreneur/Business Opportunity  http://www.marketamerica.com/allinmycart


Stay Connected and Join the Following Groups/ Pages & Channels

Linkedin
Mass Professional Networking    For events in the Greater Boston area and Networking Tips
Mass Tech Networking                 For technical events and business networking
AIMC - Internet Marketing Group  For content on Internet Marketing for entrepreneurs
AIMC - Social Media Group     For Social Media/ Digital Marketing Tips
AIMC Business Solutions Company Page - For IT/SocialMedia Content/Showcase Pages


Facebook
Mass Professional Networking  -  Events in the Greater Boston area & networking services
Mass Tech Networking   - Technical Events in Greater Boston area & IT Content
Treasure Coast Florida - Business Networking - Events in the Treasure Coast of Florida
All in My Cart Facebook Page - For tips on Online Shopping Annuity and Great Products
AIMC Health Solutions Facebook Page - Tips on Health/Wellness, Supplements/WeightLoss
AIMC Business Solutions Facebook Page - For Social Media/Digital Marketing/Website Tips
AIMC Music Entertainment & The Scene - For Music & Entertainment Content & The Scene
AIMC Business Entrepreneur Group -Inspirational Quotes & Business Ideas for Entrepreneurs



Blog:     http://www.desocialconnector.com
YouTube  - AIMC Business Solutions Channel -
YouTube - DeSocial Connector Channel




Friday, October 12, 2018

The Obsession, The Smartphone - How Businesses Can Take Advantage of Them

As I was driving into downtown Boston getting through yet another epic traffic jam, I couldn't help but look around at my fellow drivers and why periodically some end up drifting into another lane.  My betting money was they were not looking for their blinker, but instead they were heads down looking at their phone, checking out what is going on in their Instagram feed or responding to some worthless email.  I actually believe it is because of the smartphone obsession while driving and Uber, that traffic is worst than ever in Boston.



After an hour long commute to go 20 miles, I finally got to my office and decide to take a quick walk to Starbucks to get some caffeine.  On my way, it was like playing Frogger trying to walk around all the people not paying attention to where they were going, but instead  were looking down to their smartphone, hoping to get that last Facebook post in before they get to their destination.   Ugh!!


And it doesn't stop there.   On my way back to the office, I went by a bus stop and no word of a lie, every single person was looking down on their phone and there was no offline conversations going on.  Gee, have we forgot to smile and say hi to the person next to you?

I can go on on here including the time a young girl walked right into a bus, phone goes flying and her nose goes right into the side of the bus.    But heck, let's be realistic and positive here, we are in an online world.  The concept of conversation is Whats Up App, Facebook Messenger or tweeting more than the local bird sanctuary.   I actually saw someone freak out when they saw that rare pay phone at the train station. 

The old saying when something bothers you is if you can beat it, join it.  Yes, smartphones are a pain in the you know what, but there is a lot of ways for small businesses to take advantage of everyone's obsession.  Let's touch on a few quick concepts to turn the smartphone obsession to transactions for your business.

First, of course, is your website responsive?  Responsive websites are built to adjust to any device, whether is a computer, tablet or smartphone.   Since roughly 60% of all websites are accessed through a smartphone now and it is only going to get bigger, the time is now to make sure your website is built for the smartphone.

Do you use texting to communicate with your customers?  For example, can a customer have the capability to text an order to your company, for example a restaurant?  This is another fast growing concept, since the days of dialing toll free numbers and going through an endless menu of options is not the most convenient way to connect to customers.  They will likely hang up and pick up their smartphone and connect to your competitor.


Does your company have a mobile application to make it easy for your customers to collaborate with your company and conduct all business with you?  Think about a company like CVS or Open Table where via their application, you can do everything from ordering your prescriptions to reserving a table of 4 for dinner at your favorite restaurant.   If you have an application for your business, you are taking advantage of the smartphone obsession.

How prevalent are you on the social media channels?  How often does your company tweet or post on LinkedIn or Facebook?  Considering just about everyone has a smartphone and has all of the social applications on their phone, the sky is the limit in terms of who you can reach via the social channels.   If your company's post goes viral, it can reach millions of smartphone users!


So there you have it... does your business have a responsive website, or a texting capability to reach customers, are you active on social media or do you have your own mobile application.  If you are doing all this, chances are the obsessed smartphone user will be fully engaged and maybe become obsessed with your business.   That is powerful since they may refer business to you to their connections, via a text or a tweet.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Marketing Yourself - Some Tips to Set Yourself Apart from the Others

I have been living the life of an employee as well as an entrepreneur for the past ten years or so and have been running my own business networking group called Mass Professional Networking for the past six years.   Through it all, I have met professionals that get it when it comes to showcasing themselves and then there are others that can use a little coaching.

The experience I have gathered over the years helped me make it clear that you need to set yourself apart from others with a similar professional background.  It is almost like the musician that has blue hair versus others that look like the are a lawyer by day.


One thing is clear, the professionals that understand that their net worth is not what they have in the bank, but is a derivative of their network.  Also, since we are in a transaction economy now, if you understand that it is what people get out of you is their return on investment.  In other words, when marketing yourself, think about how you can help the other person.

So, how about some quick tips on how to market yourself and identify your personal brand to set yourself apart the others.

First, define your target market.  Think about who you can help and then target them on social media or at targeted business network events.  Are you focused on B2C or B2B customers?  Find them.

Find one simple thing about yourself and tell your story to others you meet at events or on the social media channels and be consistent.    Stories sell you and maybe even the product or service you sell.



Work the Network.    You will be surprised how large and diverse your network is especially if you regularly attend networking events or have held professional roles for more than ten years or have recently graduated from college.  Connect to people on Linkedin and build relationships.

Trade Cards.   Do you have a personal business card?  Not your corporate company card, but a business card that defines you?   Remember you are the CEO of yourself so focus your business card on you and not your corporate company and give it out so people know about you.

Break Through The Clutter.   There is a lot of clutter out there from the drama of the Facebook feed or not focusing on attending events that make sense.  Time is valuable so leverage it the best way possible.

Blog and express your Point of View.    A blog is an excellent way to share your knowledge and express your views on topics.  Keep it positive and focus on helping others with your expertise.


Your CV is your AD.   Well, actually your LinkedIn profile is your AD since resumes are old-school.  Make sure it is an all-star profile that sets you apart from others.  Does your headline stand out?


Your Facebook Page is your AD.   Yes, it is so be careful.  Your Facebook profile defines your perception to others.   Keep it positive and post topics that attract people to you.  The goal is gain good connections and not have a list of people that block you.

Do you have a website?  Everyone should have a website or a blog (like I mentioned earlier) to define you and how you can help others.

Prepare to present.  That is right, always be ready for your elevator pitch to tell your story how you can help the person you are talking to.  Remember, keep it short and ask questions to help determine next steps.

Never Stop Networking, Ever.   It is interesting to me how some people stop networking once they get a job or that big client and then when they lose it, they are back.   Bad, bad BAD!   Network harder than ever and focus on your personal brand.  Be proactive versus reactive.



Sunday, September 23, 2018

So you WANT to be an Entrepreneur, but are you READY to be an Entrepreneur?


Most people dream of running their own business and not have to deal with the 9-to-5 routine of sitting in a cubicle and taking orders from someone they could care less about. There have been many times they think, why should they work hard to make someone else successful?



Of course, most people stick with the 9-to-5 routine since it is safe (well generally) and familiar. The idea of starting out on their own scares them into thinking what if it doesn't work out. Most 9-to-5 professionals think entrepreneurs are crazy and sometimes think starting a business especially in network marketing is a scam. But they know deep down inside, they are thinking they want a piece of the entrepreneur action.


But how do you know you have what it takes to own your own business and be a successful entrepreneur? After all, 90% of all startup businesses fail. Owning a business is very hard but very rewarding if successful.

The most important skill to start off with is perseverance but there is a lot more questions to ask yourself before you take the plunge from going from employee to entrepreneur.




Here are six questions to ask yourself before investing time in a new business.

1. Do YOU want Ongoing RESIDUAL INCOME?
Unless you are self-employed where you trade time for money, most businesses, especially network marketing businesses, allow you to make money while you are not working. The idea is to be able to build an income that is result of an organization that you built or real estate that you own that provides a regular residual income. Of course everyone is going to answer yes to this question, but let's move onto the other questions to test your entrepreneurial will.




2. What is Your WHY?
This is probably the most important question of the list. Without a why, there is really no goal. Without having a why is like driving down a dark street with your headlights off. Sure, you may see some success but you will not not know why. Before venturing into your own business, why are you doing it? Financial independence? To have a flexible life? To help others? Write it down and put it on the wall of your office or in car. This is your inspiration to be successful.




3. Do YOU have an Entrepreneurial Mindset?
Are you afraid to fail? Are you afraid of the fact you may have no income for a little while when you are in the startup phase? Are you not coachable? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may not have the mindset to be an entrepreneur. Another question to ask yourself is what books you like to read? Do you read business books or fiction books? Do you read books that improve your mindset? If you rather read a Harry Potter book or watch mindless TV, then you do not have an entrepreneur mindset.
Now if you have a strong why, enjoy hanging out with successful positive people and are willing to give up the party to work on your success, you are on your way to an entrepreneurial mindset.



4. Do YOU want to CREATE LEVERAGE?
This question is similar to the question about residual income. You create leverage by building an organizational structure or a business structure (in the case of real estate ownership) where you may everyone doing a little for a common goal of building a more successful business. This is how network marketing works where you build an organization where everyone follows a system to build their business. So the question for you is if you are an organizational builder or prefer to be self-employed? Do you want your money to work for you or do you want to work for money? Wealthy people became wealthy because they understood leverage.




5. What are YOU willing to temporarily GIVE UP to get these things?
This is a tough one. Entrepreneurs do not work 9-to-5, they work 24x7. Friday nights may mean working on your business plan versus going to the brewpub. You always need to be on and there is no time to "chill out". There is no "I'll do it tomorrow or next week". You need to give up the mindless activities and focus on activities that will grow you. Your mindset should be on your why and how to create leverage.

6. Are YOU Ready to Make This Happen?
Bottom line, there is no tomorrow or next week. If you want to be successful in the business world, you need to working on it all the time. Every time you take a break, your competition is getting ahead. Of course, you are wondering when can I get my beauty sleep? That is where time leverage comes in, Hint hint.

You are the CEO of your life and you have to have the mindset to create leverage right now or you might as well go back to that 9-to-5 safety net. Entrepreneurship is not for everyone. Ask yourself if you want to be an entrepreneur, are you ready to be an entrepreneur?

Why Having a Side Hustle is Good For You

My life totally changed in 2007.   I was at the end of my tenure at a large retail company in IT and I was getting antsy.  I needed somethin...