Aside from the traditional way of starting a business and the so-called startup world, there’s a third way to grow your money tree. It’s less risky, requires little to no capital investment and better still, the Third Way is open to anyone.
Whether you call it a side hustle, a small business or just ‘something you do for extra cash’, the Third Way is a tried-and-true model to create your financial freedom.
5 Guiding Principles of the Third Way
Principle #1 Everyone’s an expert at something.
One way or another, you’ve acquired a lot of valuable knowledge and experience throughout your life. And your somewhat unique skillset can be monetized in a lot of ways – you just need to figure out how.
Splashing out a fortune in business schools isn’t the Third Way. Rather start at the intersection of where you’re good at and where a certain group of people struggle.
Principle #2 Ideate specifically with your prospects in mind.
Think in terms of specific and concrete terms. Don’t be all things to all people. If your idea is for everyone, chances of your success is very low.
Tell people exactly what you’re offering, why it will help them and how they can buy it.
Principle #3 Invest as little capital as possible.
When you have a proven idea, it’s time to invest in your business. Be frugal when you start. The vast majority of third way projects take off with less than $500, and sometimes without a dime at all.
Principle #4 Launch before you’re ready.
As a rule of thumb, you can have a workable version of most income-generating projects under a month. Launching before you’re ready gives you a head start as well as an opportunity to see real-world feedback and adapt as necessary.
Principle #5 Improve as you go.
No business plan survives first contact with a customer. So be prepared to learn, make changes or even change course completely. Giving up and starting another is perfectly okay. In addition to learning from your mistakes, when you find something that’s working, find out why it’s working so you can double down your resources and figure out how to make it work even more.
In life, we always get the opportunity to reinvent ourselves at some point.
When you see this opportunity at your doorstep, you have two choices: use it as a springboard to greater things so dreams become goals and goals become a series of checkpoints along the way. Or you can choose to stay where you are and accept the consequences. The choice is yours.
Remember there’s a whole world of possibility out there. It’s up to you to pay attention so you don’t miss it. And when you find it, the Third Way requires you to keep your risks low, act quickly and adjust as you go along.