Not sure whether the entrepreneurial lifestyle is for you? Give these gigs a test run to figure it out.

What are some “slash” jobs I can use to make money while I transition into full-time entrepreneurship?

— Aimee T., Tacoma, WA

The following answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC). Founded by Scott Gerber, the YEC is an invite-only nonprofit organization comprised of the country’s most promising young entrepreneurs. The YEC promotes entrepreneurship as a solution to youth unemployment and underemployment and provides its members with access to tools, mentorship, and resources that support each stage of a business’s development and growth.

Consult on Whatever

Being a consultant is surprisingly easy: all you have to do is know more about something than someone else.Then it’s just a matter of figuring out how to help that person achieve their goals within the space you’re familiar with. Consulting can be time-consuming, but it can also be quite lucrative, if you possess valuable knowledge others want access to.

Colin Wright, Exile Lifestyle

Consult Cragislist as an Extra Income Dartboard

The Craigslist-as-Dartboard approach involves some high-tech trial and error: browse the services section (“lessons & tutoring” is a good subset within services), keep a list of any services that sound fun and that you might be qualified to do (keep it legal!). Bookmark or copy posts you like, then write 2-3 of your own for different areas. Post them and see which ones take.

Jenny Blake, Life After College

Create Forms of Passive Income

“Passive income” is a misnomer, as these things usually take time to set up. But if you can use your knowledge to create a high-quality, high-value information product — like an ebook, worksheet, or case study — you can collect income on that product for years to come.

Steph Auteri, Word Nerd Pro

Online Solutions

There are tons of sites to make quick money. For example: Amazon Mechanical Turk, eBay, Microworkers, Zaarly, Student Of Fortune, 99 Designs, Fiverr, TaskRabbit and more. Just find whatever fits you best.

Ben Lang, MySchoolHelp

Freelance Web Development

If you have web development skills, take on some freelance work. Everybody needs web work done nowadays, so finding some clients to get started shouldn’t be too hard after looking around your existing networks.

Tim Jahn, Entrepreneurs Unpluggd

Become a Virtual Assistant for Easy Cash

Virtual Assistants (VAs) are a commodity on the rise. The growing market for Virtual Assistants comes as solopreneurs, entrepreneurs, startups and small businesses grow and look for alternative options to fulfill secondary duties and tasks in their online enterprises. Zirtual is a great company that places and hires Virtual Assistants, check them out!

Dave Ursillo, Lead Without Followers

Assist a Successful Entrepreneur

While you’re building your business, find a successful entrepreneur who’s doing what you want to do and ask to assist them or take odd jobs at their company. Not only will you earn cash, you’ll also be earning valuable experience and building a great relationship with a possible mentor.

Lisa Nicole Bell, Inspired Life Media Group

‘Future Mentor’ for Young People

As you build your business you can also work with young people as a career or “future mentor.” This is where you help teens and college students build their resumes, applications and find passions. This can be great for extra money and can be done on evenings and weekends. Plus you can get motivated by talking to the young people.

Vanessa Van Petten, Science of People

Get Paid to Play on Facebook

While networks like Facebook and Twitter may be social for you, they mean big business to small companies. Market yourself on Craigslist or as a social media consultant and offer to help business owners build their follower bases by creating compelling profiles and content. As an added service, help your clients keep track of their social media stats, too.

Lindsey Pollak, Lindsey Pollak

Become a “Relative Expert”

You don’t need to know everything about a topic, you just need to know more than the people hiring you. You can learn the basics of all sorts of freelance-able skills in a weekend. SEO and copywriting are two great examples of this. Will you be the world’s best right away? Of course not, but you can add significant value to small businesses, and get paid for it, in very little time.

Sean Ogle, Location 180, LLC

Got any other ideas we should add to this list? How are you bringing in extra income?


  1. Aida Jammal

    Wow! This is great! Thank you!

  2. Greg Miliates

    If you want to consistently earn more money, and even replace your current day-job income, then you’ll need to start a business.

    Freelancing/consulting is a great business model–either as a side business or with the intent of building it into your full-time endeavor–because a freelance/consulting business has:
       –>very low start-up costs,
       –>flexible hours,
       –>a high hourly pay rate, and
       –>you likely already have the expertise to get started.

    Since starting my consulting business 5 years ago, I’ve QUADRUPLED my former salary and ditched my day job. Starting a business will be hard work to be sure, but the benefits are well worth it. Besides, starting a freelance/consulting business lets you learn the ropes of running a successful business.

    You can check out an interview I recently did where I talk about how I made the switch from employee to consultant, and where I talk about some of my initial fears & doubts, and give actual income & rate numbers:

    Greg Miliates

  3. Dr. Scott Schumann DDS

    There are a lot of suggestions and all are good. Yet, the suggestion about writing an ebook is in my opinion a very savvy move. Think about it…our society puts a tremendous amount of emphasis on being an author…in other words, authors=expert. Perception is reality and as an author you will have doors opened to you that many times would not be opened if not for your level of perceived excellence. So an ebook is a great starting place. I’m fortunate enough to have worked my self into a high level of success as a dentist in Grove City, Ohio, but I’m also a published author of 5 best selling books on Now ask yourself the question: “If I have to go to a dentist, would I want to go to the dentist who is also a best selling author of 5 books or do I want to go to just any other dentist?” The same question can and should be asked for whatever industry you are in because being an author makes you the obvious choice.

  4. Tom @ Bookkeepers Canberra

    Some good food for thought here. Thanks!

  5. Nick Ward-Bopp

    These are great slash ideas. Im trying a rehab-for-rent project.. work on an old building in an urban setting to learn hands on tangible skills such as carpentry, plumbing, interior design, etc. There are plenty of opportunities to work in exchange for rent and utilities, you just have to look around your area and speak to the owners! I am doing this and am documenting the progress/process:

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