Small business ideas to run part-time

Want to start a business without having to give up your day job? Most of us don't have the luxury of quitting our day jobs while we do. With that in mind, we spoke to 3 entrepreneurs who are each running their own part-time business.

The Techrider of Techno Ebrahim Kader (26)

Ebrahim Kader is a junior IT Architect at Old Mutual - part of their Graduate Programme. 8 years ago, Ebrahim took an interest in becoming a DJ/Producer. He now goes by the alias TechRider.

He was inspired during a rough time in his life when a friend took him to a concert where his idol was playing.

I was watching this guy and thinking, I know exactly how this guy is reading the crowd and I want to do this one day, I also want to play for a crowd of 30 000 and I’m going to blow them away because I know how to tell a story he says.

He gave himself 4 months to learn how to DJ and start playing at gigs. At my first gig, I entered a competition and won best DJ. I knew that this was exactly what I wanted to do he explains.

Ebrahim taught himself to DJ by watching Youtube tutorials - it also helped that he has an ear for it. He went from charging R300 a gig, to now charging between R1200 R1800 and plays at 6 to 8 gigs a month. He promotes himself through social media and is looking into getting a manager and signing to a booking agent. He saves the money from his gigs to buy equipment and software.

The triple threat entrepreneur Allan J Young (34)

The Marketing Coordinator for Essilor South Africa, Allan J Young is also a freelance business and marketing consultant. He offers his marketing services to a variety of small businesses, which include marketing strategies with a specific focus on digital, mobile and social media. He also offers design and photography consultations too.

He started his part-time business to supplement his income and increase his savings, as well as to improve his lifestyle. He explains that he also felt that his experience and skills could be useful to start-ups, and make professional services more accessible and affordable. His current hourly rate for consulting, design and photography is R400.

He studied at CPUT where he completed his BTech in Public Relations which provided a good foundation for the skills he needed. He stays up-to-date with business trends and the market with regular online courses.

Allan says that in order to balance both work and his side business he prioritises his day job before focusing on his private work during the evening and on the weekend.

Made up for Make-Up - Laeeqa Yusuf (35)

Laeeqa Yusuf is a project manager and in-house makeup artist for a company called Comestix. On the side, she freelances as a makeup artist, hairstylist and spray tan therapist. Her business entails doing hair and makeup for brides, specials occasions, shoots, television and commercials.

She started her business because she wanted to spend time with her kids, and wanted a job she could schedule around them. Attending a makeup workshop allowed her to make an informed decision about going ahead with her business idea.

Laeeqa explains, I have always had a flair for makeup but I needed to perfect my skills, so I took a part time course while working full time. She managed to study at the Head to Makeup and Hairstyling School, later becoming a lecturing there.

Her services range from R450 - R2 000, depending on the occasion. To balance between work and her business she often finds herself working throughout the week. She says that starting a business is tough and you will only reap the benefits after a good couple of years. Always stay relevant and keep up the trends.

What the three entrepreneurs have in common is that they know what they’re good at and they have used it to their advantage. With each entrepreneur, a lot of time was needed, at least initially, to grow their businesses. Consider the skills you have to offer, or build on, when thinking about starting your own side project.

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