Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

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guitarguy
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Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by guitarguy » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:40 am

So I'm an engineer in a technical role at megaautocorp by day, and a side-hustle small business owner (musician/band) by night.

At some point in my career, at my current company or elsewhere in another industry, I'd like to transition into more of a project management role with less technical focus. The more my career develops, the more I think I'd be stronger in that type of role than if I stayed technical. I do have an MS, not an MBA, which may or may not be a roadblock to my wanting this type of change...but at this point in my life going back for an MBA isn't in the cards.

Question: I'm wondering if it would be beneficial for me to put my side hustle on my resume.

My professional experience is mostly technical, whereas my side hustle experience is anything but. There are a TON of skills and experience I've developed managing my band that would be very applicable in a project management type role: leading the team in all facets and managing a LOT of moving pieces, setting team goals and timelines, sales, developing relationships and working with clients, marketing & web design, coordinating events, accounting and business management, etc.

My thing is (if it's a good move to include it), how do I frame it? Do I spell it out and say I own my own business which generates $150k revenue each year? I lead a team of 9 people week in and week out putting on events and managing client expectations?

I'm having trouble with how to make a corp exec that reads it not look at it like "oh he's in some crummy band and he's got that on here...big deal...eye roll...etc".

mhalley
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by mhalley » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:48 am

I have no experience or knowledge whatsoever in this topic, but I wonder if an employer might look at it as a negative in several ways.
1. He has this side gig and will not be focusing on the job I hired him for.
2. He is making a ton of money off the side gig, how soon will he quit to do it full time.
3. He is a musician and they have a reputation for partying, how often will he show up for work tired or hungover?

Topic Author
guitarguy
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by guitarguy » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:52 am

mhalley wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:48 am
I have no experience or knowledge whatsoever in this topic, but I wonder if an employer might look at it as a negative in several ways.
1. He has this side gig and will not be focusing on the job I hired him for.
2. He is making a ton of money off the side gig, how soon will he quit to do it full time.
3. He is a musician and they have a reputation for partying, how often will he show up for work tired or hungover?
That would be the drawback...I was worried of the same things appearing in a negative way.

(Although they are ALL completely off-base. I have no desire to do music full time and nor do any of my mates. And I'm a dork not a party animal. One time we played a travel gig and after the show we played Uno in our AirBnb. Real Van Halen esque rockstars, eh? :P )

therub
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by therub » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:55 pm

My thoughts, as an individual in a similar role that often is involved in hiring.

First, don't call it a side hustle. It makes it sound like you're delivering pizza or driving uber, and isn't a professional term.

Depending on where you're applying, side business can be a positive or a negative. The way to relay the information so that you're both not hiding anything, and able to talk about your valuable experience from it, is to list it as a hobby. I can see that you take it quite seriously, and that it has income, so feel free to consider it a business personally. But professionally, if you call it a hobby, it becomes something you can talk about as much as you'd like, without any risk of employers or potential employers getting nervous or threatened by it.
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Jack FFR1846
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Thu Feb 07, 2019 2:02 pm

Perhaps include it at the bottom along with "interests". I've always thought that this was a good place because an interviewer can easily look, and ignore if he doesn't care or might engage you to talk more if he was interested. Having played in bands myself and building guitars, if you listed that you managed and played lead guitar for your band, I would absolutely look at that in a good way and would probably ask you about it. (and if you were local, I'd ask if I had ever sold you one of my guitars).

Some of the absolute best engineers I've ever dealt with are active musicians. I work along side sales people as the technical guy. From memory, I can remember one customer chief engineer who plays keyboard for his band at a country club every Friday night. Another plays chords only (no, it's not Guitar George that Knopfler talks about) and another co-worker who is a very good acoustic player.
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Jimmie
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by Jimmie » Thu Feb 07, 2019 2:04 pm

therub wrote:
Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:55 pm
The way to relay the information so that you're both not hiding anything, and able to talk about your valuable experience from it, is to list it as a hobby. I can see that you take it quite seriously, and that it has income, so feel free to consider it a business personally. But professionally, if you call it a hobby, it becomes something you can talk about as much as you'd like, without any risk of employers or potential employers getting nervous or threatened by it.
+1

In my opinion, this can be a positive in an interview. Perspective employers like well-rounded employees. I think the more one knows in a variety of subjects and topics, the better developed his mind is to solve problems.

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guitarguy
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by guitarguy » Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:00 pm

Thanks for the feedback all!

I kinda figured that putting it on there could engage dialogue about it...but I didn't think to include an "interests" or "hobbies" section on my resume! That's a thing?? :confused

I guess if they brought it up I could engage about all the applicable skills I've learned that I haven't really been exposed to much in my day job. But what if they don't care that I'm a musician? lol.

I mean the real reason for my wanting to discuss it is to highlight the experience I've attained in that setting that would really be beneficial to me in a people-leading role...not just to shoot the bleep about music. haha.

sbaywriter
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by sbaywriter » Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:16 pm

I know nothing really, no hiring experience. But seems like this could be validly included as part of a functional resume versus chronological resume.

Also, if there are opportunities for taking on your desired new role within company, that might be easier that external transistion. And maybe you could do some "informational/feedback" type interviews with managers you know personally, saying you would like some career feedback, and tell them your interest and experience in this area and how rewarding you have found it and ask how they might view it on a resume if they were a hiring manager.

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RickBoglehead
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by RickBoglehead » Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:18 pm

I was about to write "don't call it a side hustle" when I saw someone already had.

I agree with Interests. Push it too much and it shows you're not focused on the job. IMO, it's going to add zippo to your resume' though. As a hiring manager, I had no interest in what you did at night except to show that you weren't getting enough sleep to nail my job during the workday.
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123
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by 123 » Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:22 pm

A side hustle is just a distraction on a resume, unless it's one that has you going in a new career direction and you want to emphasize that and it pertains to the job you're applying for.

Advertising your interest in a side hustle as a musician also may make the reader associate other "musician things" with you, not necessarily positive. Common musician (mis-) conceptions (?) include lack of focus, lack of priorities, flaky lifestyle, and possible drug/alcohol abuse.

Drop it.
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Shackleton
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by Shackleton » Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:56 pm

As for hobbies on resumes - I've always left them off because it has nothing to do with my ability to do the job I'm interviewing for. But one time, I was interviewing and we got onto the topic of hobbies, and I said something along the lines of " oh, I do some running, and biking, and swim a bit" to which the interviewer said "you do triathlons?!?" in an excited tone. When I told him "yes" he said "that's great, I think triathletes make great employees because they know how to work really hard." I didn't mention to him that they are often tired from doing both morning and afternoon workouts, and planning their nutrition down to the last gram, or obsessing over the newest bike/wetsuit/garmin product. "Yeah, really hard workers!"
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Elsebet
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by Elsebet » Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:37 pm

I have a section on my resume called "Volunteer Experience" where I list my years of WSU Master Gardener service.

A few years ago I volunteered some time helping an organization define HR related XML schemas, I used to list that too but it's too distant now to mention.
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tim1999
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by tim1999 » Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:48 pm

I would leave it off the resume, but mention your involvement in the band if the interviewer strikes up small talk on your interests outside of work. Actually, I wouldn't even mention a band unless they ask if you are in one, just that you play an instrument.

There are a lot of really uptight, judgmental people in the corporate world who think that anyone whose evening activities involve something other than tending to their kids and checking work email constantly doesn't fit their mold. Maybe not at every company, but I've encountered many at mine.

quantAndHold
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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by quantAndHold » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:10 am

I would leave it off.

Yes, every 3rd engineer has a band. That’s no big deal. But I’ve seen people rejected at interview time because it seemed like they were more interested in heir side job than the job we were interviewing them for. When you put an extracurricular activity on the resume, that’s the risk you run.

To make a switch like that, your best bet is to make the transition into the new role while at your megacorp. People make those kind of lateral moves all the time. I’m not sure where you are in your career, or what kind of managerial structure your company has, but the desire to change your career focus is a perfectly reasonable thing to bring up with your supervisor, when you’re talking about career things.

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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by stimulacra » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:36 am

I would leave it off.

Appropriate side hustle items to include in your resume would be adjacent-entrepreneurship type roles, consulting or thought-leadership gigs, or non-profit board roles or committee roles.

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Re: Career Advice: Side hustle on resume?

Post by texasdiver » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:45 am

Once I hit my mid-30s I started to need to weed out material on the resume in order emphasize the skills and experience that I wanted to emphasize.

I agree with the others, leave it off. If other interests come up in the interview, fine. Talk about it if you want. Everyone (or almost everyone) has some kind of life outside of work, even if it is only coaching their kid's soccer team.

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