How To Create a Successful Side Project

Its a long journey to go from a simple idea to a top-class side project. You know it takes dedication and discipline, but you probably dont know the steps to make it achievable. Like any big goal, you need to break it down into smaller targets, rely on expert advice on how to meet those targets, and be unafraid of failure. From great advice to great feedback, lets learn how to create a side project that youre proud of.

6 Ways to Take on a Side Project That Doesn’t Take Over Your Life
  1. Decide What You Want to Get Out of the Project. …
  2. Make a Thorough Plan and Timeline Before Getting Started. …
  3. Don’t Rush Your Success. …
  4. Prioritize Your Time. …
  5. Commit to Just One Side Project at a Time. …
  6. Include Family and Friends in Your Process.

4 Steps to Build a Side Project Successfully

How to create a successful side project

Consider following these steps to create a successful side project:

1. Research a side project idea

Once you have an idea for a side project, research it. Try to identify a problem with a potential solution that you can offer, and then, decide if people would pay for your expertise. For example, you may have web design experience and want to launch a side project that focuses on creating websites for non-profit businesses in your spare time.

Successful side projects may focus on things youre passionate about and be a great source of self-fulfillment. Read several books, blogs and articles on the topic to learn about what successful people have done in similar situations. If there arent any resources available for your interests, try researching how other people in your network started their side projects and see if you can apply some of these ideas to your own situation.

2. Write a list of your skills

When you are thinking of starting a side project, consider your skill sets and professional experiences. You may have several skills that would be useful for a side project, so its important to narrow them down based on your interests. Here is a list of sample skills that would be helpful in launching a side project:

3. Consider your location

Try to identify any opportunities that you have in your city or state for starting a side project. Ask yourself what types of businesses are already popular in your area and if your area would benefit from anyone else offering this service. If you find that there arent many people already offering your service, then this could be a great opportunity for you.

4. Brainstorm with colleagues

Consider including your colleagues in your brainstorming sessions. Determine if theres a need for what you want to offer and ask for feedback. Feedback can also come from friends or family members that are interested in seeing you succeed.

5. Create an action plan

Once you find the perfect idea for a side project, create a plan of action. Consider creating a side project plan that includes all aspects of what you may do, including when you may start, what resources you need to launch your side project, who will help and how much time it will take. One strategy is to create a schedule of expected launch dates and include a goal for how many hours a day you plan on working on your side project.

6. Determine what technology you need

When you create an action plan and have a framework for launching your side project, its helpful to outline what technology resources you need. For example, a new side project may require a camera for a photography business or an accountant to track business sales.

Its also helpful to determine if your side project needs an online presence such as a website, a portfolio or social media platforms. Some social networking websites may be simple ways for you to promote your new services or products.

7. Create a budget

You may need equipment or marketing tools to launch your side project, which may require costs upfront. It might be helpful to keep any investments to a minimum until your side project generates an income. Look for opportunities to barter in your community or find low-cost resources. For example, graphic design software would be essential for a new freelance designer, but there are free options available or tools that allow affordable monthly payments instead of one flat fee.

What is a side project?

A side project is a short- or long-term project you complete outside of your full-time job and may offer a way to make extra money, explore an interest or launch a business. Side projects may be an important way to stay creative and break out of a routine. Theyre also a good way to develop new skills and explore new interests without dedicating too much time away from their primary jobs or families.

Tips to launch a side project

Here are a few tips that may be useful when starting a side project:

Time management

To be successful in your side project, be realistic about the time and resources you have available. Its okay if this project takes longer than expected to create since you can launch it on your own schedule. Consider the needs of your family and primary job and see if you can handle the additional responsibility your side project requires. If youre able to schedule time for your project, here are a few ways to monitor your availability:

Interests

Be honest with yourself about your interests and goals to make sure you enjoy working on your side project. Its essential that whatever youre doing coordinates with whats important to you and makes sense for your stage of life. Your initial motivation may be a factor in whether your side project becomes successful.

Networking

Join or create a community that may help you market your new side project. Networking can give your project visibility and offer a way to meet others who are also starting side projects themselves. Here are a few ideas for side project networking that may be helpful:

Side project ideas

Here are several side project ideas that may be relevant for your goals, interests and experience:

FAQ

How do you build a side project?

The 4 secrets to successful side projects:
  1. Make sure you’re building skills that easily translate to other areas regardless of how the project turns out.
  2. Talk about it often and share your story with others.
  3. Block off specific time on your calendar to work on your side project at the beginning of the week.
  4. Have fun!

How do side projects make money?

44 Profitable Ideas to Make Extra Money on the Side
  1. Sell items on eBay, Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace. …
  2. Recycle used smartphones on Gazelle. …
  3. Drive for Uber or Lyft. …
  4. Deliver for PostMates. …
  5. Rent your spare room on Airbnb. …
  6. Manage social media for small businesses. …
  7. Sell services on Fiverr. …
  8. Tutor over Skype.

What are good side projects?

14 programming side projects to boost your resume
  • Gaming app. Gaming apps can emphasize your skills as a programmer because there are many aspects involved in designing a game. …
  • Portfolio website. You can make a website to host a portfolio. …
  • Blog. …
  • Weather app. …
  • To-do app. …
  • Messaging app. …
  • Social media app. …
  • Food tracker.

How do I choose my next side project?

How to Choose a Side Project
  1. Passion. One way to choose a side project is by looking at what you’re passionate about. …
  2. Self-care. …
  3. Fun. …
  4. Learning. …
  5. Choose one or two. …
  6. Set small goals. …
  7. Get friends involved. …
  8. Focus on urgent not perfect.

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