Passion projects are the new black – am I right? It seems like everyone has a side hustle, part time blog, or some project they work on outside of their “normal” 9-5 job. I turned my side hustle of prop styling & blogging into a full time career in 2016 and haven’t looked back since.
We took an idea (taking the pressure off women to be perfect & give them quick, easy, & approachable recipes and life hacks) and grew it into a website with ten contributors world-wide, press features from major publications, and paid content creators for household name brands within a year. That took a lot of of chutzpah, late nights, and trial and error. We get asked all the time by readers how we turned LaurenKelp.com from an after-work project to a full-time day job, so we thought we would answer all your questions (plus some other really important things) with some help from our friends at Rocket Lawyer. You’ve got the idea & the passion, now you just need those rockstar contracts & clients to get things in gear – don’t worry, we’ve got you!
Being your own boss is truly one of the most rewarding experiences, but it’s not for the faint of heart. Very quickly the façade of sleeping in all the time, the appeal of working from home every day, or spending the afternoon lunching with girlfriends fades away and you realize that you’ve got to hustle, hustle, hustle if you want that glam #girlboss life. Luckily, for every late night, there is an amazing client, a killer pay off, or an amazing opportunity. But luck rewards the hard worker, so here are a few things I learned when I got started:
Pay for things that matter
Hire people that are smarter than you
Contracts are King
Organize, organize, organize!
A pretty easy list of things to remember, right? Well, get ready girlfriend. It’s time to hike up those boss pants & get to work because these four little tips are going to save you a lot of time & money, and show those competitors you mean business!
PAY FOR THING THAT MATTER
As much as I would love to tell you that this means you should buy the Gucci belt, it’s got another purpose. When you are first starting out it is beyond important to incorporate your business. Meaning, trademark your name, establish yourself as a legitimate business, and file with all the appropriate entities. Unless your new business is a law firm, all of that probably went over your head. Before using Rocket Lawyer, I was hunting online, being put on hold for hours at a time, and filing incorrectly, and then filing again…and then filing again cause I still did it wrong.
Do yourself a huge favor & get Rocket Lawyer to do all the heavy lifting for you. With their Incorporate Online feature, you get to be the boss & with a click of a button, your paperwork is filed correctly, with half the cost, and literally none of the hassle. Win/win, baby.
HIRE PEOPLE THAT ARE SMARTER THAN YOU
Not good with numbers, hire an accountant. Terrible at billing and invoicing, get a bookkeeper. Owning your own business doesn’t mean you have to do it all yourself. In fact, one of the best parts of being your own boss is delegating. Seeking legal advice (questions like; how should I set up contracts if I am a photographer, should I bring on a full-time employee or a contractor, etc.) can get pricey very quick, but what do you do when you need expert advice but are trying to save your pennies? Girlfriend, the Ask a Lawyer feature on Rocket Lawyer is a business owners best friend.
You get your quick & dirty legal advice without the crazy fees or worrying about if you’ve gone to the right place. Ask your question online & get a personalized answer within minutes. Talk about people working for you!
CONTRACTS ARE KING
I can not stress this enough! Whether you are a creative starting your own consulting business or fresh out of medical school opening your own practice, contracts are beyond important. Whenever I enter into a new agreement with a client, I always send them a contract outlining the terms of the agreement, payment structure, and detailing who gets what when. I had absolutely no idea how to create said contract or even what to include, but thanks to the unlimited library of legal documents, I look like a freaking pro & so will you!
With the Rocket Lawyer Document Defense, you will get quick legal help to enforce your contract if anything goes awry. Basically, you’ll have the big guns on speed dial whenever you need them. Comforting, right?
ORGANIZE, ORGANIZE, ORGANIZE
No one likes a stack of papers at there desk, especially when there is no rhyme or reason to chaos. Join the 21st century and start organizing all those important documents, contracts, and filing forms in the cloud. Guess who has a secure cloud storage ready and waiting for you? That’s right, your new best friends at Rocket Lawyer.
There are plenty of great cloud storage options out there, but many of them are not secure & when you are storing sensitive information, security is everything.
So are you ready to join the ranks of small business ownership? Because we believe in you so much, Rocket Lawyer is offering a discount for new users. Use this code & sign up here to receive 50% off a year long membership. Watch out world, we’ve got moves to make!
photography by aimée mazzenga