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Full-Time Employee PLUS Freelancer: The New American Career Path

Those who are currently employed full-time are adding second jobs or “assignments” as additional streams of income to safeguard against potential layoffs

By Ford R. Myers
President, Career Potential, LLC

In addition to her full-time job, your co-worker is a beauty consultant in the evenings. Your husband, a CPA Monday through Friday, works at a gourmet food market on weekends. Your uncle, an engineer, coaches the high school soccer team every Fall and works at a Summer camp for one month each year.

Welcome to the new American career path: adults who hold full-time jobs during the day as well as part-time or freelance positions. According to recent U.S. Labor Department statistics, more than 6.9% Americans are considered multiple job holders.

Unlike the past, when people were taking-on second jobs strictly for the money, there is a more current reason why Americans are adding new “assignments” to their work-lives.

In today’s unpredictable economy, workers can’t rely on their full-time jobs for their livelihood. They need to be SELF-reliant, not JOB reliant. This means if they were to lose their main position, they would still have a stream of income and the confidence that will put them ahead of others in a similar situation.

Here are six options where workers can add breadth to their careers and earn additional income while continuing in their full-time positions:

  1. Part-time employment. Whether it’s in the retail, restaurant, sales, business services or administrative sector, here’s your chance to find a position in a field you genuinely like.
  2. Teaching or substitute teaching. Experienced professionals are sought-after to teach classes and bring a real-world perspective to their students.
  3. Consulting or contract assignments. If you have a background in business, finance, operations, computer/technology, or creative/advertising, these fields naturally lend themselves to consulting or contract work.
  4. Work for family or friends.  Contact every friend, relative or acquaintance who runs a business, and ask about their needs and challenges. Offer to help them out. People who know you are more likely you “give you a break.”
  5. Home-based work. With the advent of the Internet and computer technology, it’s easier than ever to do real work from home, specifically in the fields of administrative, sales, computer services, creative assignments, bookkeeping, and personal services.
  6. Odd jobs. There is always a need for reliable help in the areas of construction, painting, sewing, moving and hauling, cooking, cleaning, yard work, and plowing. If you’re not afraid to get your hands dirty, you can earn good money providing these greatly-needed services to organizations and individuals.

The world of work has changed. Rather than relying on one source of income (such as from a full-time job), many people are developing second or even third streams of income to provide a greater sense of security. By pursuing an outside interest, hobby or passion, it’s very likely that you could do the same. Given the current state of the US economy and job market, that would be a smart move!

About the Author:
Ford R. Myers is an award-winning career coach and President of Career Potential, LLC. He is author of the best-seller, Get The Job You Want, Even When No One’s Hiring. Ford’s firm helps clients take charge of their careers, create the work they love, and earn what they deserve! He has held senior consulting positions at three of the nation’s largest career service firms. Ford’s articles have appeared in thousands of publications and web sites, and he has been interviewed on every major television and radio network. Ford has also conducted presentations at hundreds of companies, associations and universities. Learn more at

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