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Polywork Reads: Side hustle safety nets and emerging microeconomies

Polywork Reads: Side hustle safety nets and emerging microeconomies

We can't believe it's already time for another installment of Polywork Reads, your roundup of the latest in side hustle- and personal branding-adjacent content that the free version of ChatGPT can’t summarize for you yet — take that robots!

In honor of this momentous occasion, we kindly ask that you please stop everything you’re doing and read some of these important articles, and more importantly, all of ours. We’re (mostly) kidding, but they’re all interesting we swear.

Miss the last edition of Polywork Reads? Catch up here.

Is the “side hustle safety net” actually hurting polyworkers?

We’re experiencing a “polyemployment paradox” (we see what you did there) where gig workers and others who take on multiple jobs to build their own safety net can also find themselves particularly vulnerable.

At least that’s author Alexandrea Ravenelle contention in her new book, Side Hustle Safety Net: How Vulnerable Workers Survive Precarious Times, arguing that these efforts, intended to offer some degree of security, can hurt as much (or more) than help when they prevent workers from receiving other forms of income, such as unemployment benefits.

“People try to get ‘secure employment’ by ensuring that they have all these different jobs, but if they lose the best-paying job — and they’re still working their other jobs — they may find that their ongoing work prevents them from receiving unemployment assistance,” Ravenelle told the CUNY Graduate Center. “Sometimes your income drops, but your side hustle work disqualifies you from benefits.”

Source: CUNY Graduate Center

Polywork Reads: Flexible work, rating side hustles | Polywork Blog
Polywork’s latest roundup of the best reads across side income, personal branding, and the future of work.

Optimization wins in the future of work, founder says

Chris Kay, founder of andOpen.xyz, believes we’re in a polycrisis (I guess we're really on to something!) inflamed by the rise of the Great Resignation, quiet quitting, or many of the other catchphrase-y terms that infiltrated the zeitgeist in the past two-plus years.

While many companies are focused on where employees are working (i.e., in office, hybrid, or remote), he believes that the companies prioritizing optimization across several fronts will come out on top. Moreover, getting the most out of leadership, talent, and support systems will be pivotal to company success.

“So rather than creating another new moniker for how our world of work is changing, leaders should jump positively into this new era and do the three things mentioned above, for the CEO to drive the future of work in their organization, move from talent operation to talent optimization, and to build a support system for the win,” he says.

Source: Fast Company

Polywork reads: Side hustles on the rise | Polywork Blog
We looked at the data behind side hustle growth, the rise of AI automation within our work, and why a robot could be your next brand consultant.

Are side hustles creating a growing microeconomy? A recent survey analyzes the trend

A recently survey of adults between the ages of 18-60 years old found that 67% own a small business, have a side hustle, or do freelance work, according to tech company Pinger.

Pinger contends that their data is indicative of a growing trend: microbusinesses, defined as those with fewer than 10 employees, are becoming an increasingly important part of the economy.

Pinger's survey also found that 75% of microbusiness owners had a full-time gig, while 80% started their side hustle to increase income.

“Not surprisingly, their primary motivation was to make more money. However, money is only one of their motivators. Learning a new skill was the second most important reason they do what they do,” Pinger said of the survey data.

Source: Pinger

Honorable mentions

Here's a few other side hustle-related reads from around the internet:

• A software engineer was looking for a side hustle so he started making TikTok videos about Costco. It paid off. | Insider

• How an urban hiker in Kansas City turned her side hustle full-time | Marketplace

• As side gigs become more common to boost income, what are the rules for employees? | The Globe and Mail

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