Second jobs, who's more likely to work extra hours

Work life balance is a tenuous subject. A day job can be stressful, overwhelming or even cumbersome. If that day job is so difficult, why are more women choosing to take on a side hustle to supplement their income?

According to a recent Career Builder survey, 35 percent of women have some type of side job. This supplemental income isn’t necessarily for women below the poverty line. Workers with salaries above the $75,000 annual income are just as likely to have an extra job as workers under $50,000 a year salary.

Rosemary Haefner, Chief Human Resources Officer at CareerBuilder, said “while we continue to be at what is considered full employment, the quality and pay of jobs isn't always what workers want, causing them to seek out new ways to supplement their full-time income.”

While this survey is quite interesting, the numbers don’t tackle the underlying question. Is the side job a monetary issue or a job quality issue?  Included in the survey results were some popular examples of common side jobs. These jobs included chef/baker, blogger and dog walker. Could the side job be more about a passion versus income?

Looking at some of the popular types of side jobs, these jobs tend to fall under a passion profession. For example, many people are outstanding cooks with amazing culinary talent. But, making a living as a professional chef is tremendously difficult. For every Food Network Star there is a struggling line cook who can barely afford her apartment. Still, she may want to share her culinary creations with others. A side gig catering for friends or baking birthday cakes could be a way to increase her income and engage her passion for cooking.

The same can be said for the other examples of blogger or dog walker. Some people have a special way with animals, but veterinary school may not have been possible. Or maybe, a wife wants a dog but her husband doesn’t. A side job as a dog walker works for her. The same can applied to blogging for the struggling writer. Maybe that blogging job won’t pay the rent but it could keep you in Starbucks for the month.

Very few people are fortunate enough to have a well-paying job that is also their passion. Compromise in some job aspect is highly likely. From work/life balance to feeling undervalued, these thoughts creep into everyone’s daily lives.

While some people may point to this study as a reflection of workers being underpaid, I believe that simple answer isn’t the complete story. Of course, many people would love extra income for many reasons. From monthly bills to saving for a special event, extra income can be extremely beneficial. But, the type of side jobs seems to reflect more than just a monetary reason.

Women may be more likely to have a side hustle, but it may not be for the reasons you think. Even if I win the lottery this weekend, I will continue writing for publications because writing is enjoyable for me, regardless any money. 

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