The March issue of Psychologies magazine contains an article called ‘Variety Club’ (p78) which is all about portfolio careers. Portfolio careers involve having two or more jobs at one time and has a lot in common with freelancing, for example you need to be a great time-keeper. I thought I’d take a closer look at what they’re all about and what you need to think about when taking on multiple roles.
Be your own boss and satisfy the others
A portfolio career may include having a number of employers or even working for yourself. For that reason you need to be an excellent time-keeper, super-organised and be able to juggle different ideas and projects successfully. If you can’t do this in your current position then creating a portfolio career may not be for you.
Essentially you need to be your own boss and hold yourself to account then it’s much easier to be prepared when one of the people you work for asks for this, that or the other. In your own mind you also need to prioritise daily. If you’ve got an important meeting for one job then put preparation for that before anything else, even though it might not be the most interesting item in your schedule.
Before starting an additional job it helps to get yourself organised at home. There’s lot of inspiration out there, here’s a few of my favourite articles:
- How to simplify your filing system (From Zen Habits)
- 18 Five minute decluttering tips (From Zen Habits)
- Imaginative craft rooms from around the web (From Apartment Therapy)
- The best featured workspaces of 2011 (From Life Hacker)
Portfolio careers are for rounded individuals
Better for all involved
Preparing for a portfolio career
Many people fall into this kind of working with a bit of redundancy capital behind them, but if that’s not you there’s lots you can do to prepare to take this kind of leap or treat your current role as a kind of portfolio job. Can you take your passions and hobbies to a new level? Will a course allow you to teach what you enjoy? Could you take a class of youngsters on a weekend for example. This won’t interfere with you day-to-day work and could open up a new additional or superior career path. If this is something you’d like to consider in the future but don’t know where to start then here are 5 tips to try
- Make a list of new activities you’d like to try out and see if there’s any you really enjoy
- Consider volunteering or interning part-time, doesn’t have to be for a charity
- Use your evenings for something more productive than watching TV
- Write a description of your favourite parts of your current job and look at other jobs that would include them
- Take a vocational course at a local college
Keeping the balance
So, my question today is how many readers have or would consider a portfolio career?