Sunday Business Show Conall O Móráin Today FM - #SavvyTeenAcademy Susan HayesCulleton

How to create a job for yourself in the next twelve weeks

Last Sunday (10 May) I was interviewed, along with Mary Phelan, a writer with the Irish Farmers Journal, by Conall O Móráin on Today FM, about summer jobs and teenage entrepreneurship. 

Conall O Morain TodayFM Interview

Conall jokes that "in olden days" it was customary to stick children up chimneys so they could earn a living, but today there are much, much better places young people can go (listen in at 0:51 minutes).

Many secondary school students will be off school soon, and some of them have as much as three months' free time in 

Conall O Móráin Today FM Susan HayesCulleton

front of them: that's a fantastic opportunity. I share an example of how I bartered my free time in exchange for a stock market training course in college (listen in at 1:05).

Conall started working when he was 12: today is no different, you can start babysitting at 12, like I did; I started giving grinds when I was 15. Mary shares a great tip: has hundreds of part time jobs at the moment and has seen a 41% increase since January in the number of restaurant and catering roles (listen in at 3:10).

The jobs are out there. Granted, they can be difficult to get, but that's not to say you shouldn't try. And there are other possibilities: today's teenagers can easily get a first taste of entrepreneurship via the internet.

Mary shares a wonderful example of a 21 year old student who manages to cram as much as 50 hours of work during his weekends, working three bartending jobs. And that's not all: he also sources cheap agricultural machinery online. He then improves it and sells it for a better price. And when a client at the bar mentions that he would need such and such, our lad tells him "I can source one of those for you" (listen in at 4:25).

So if you want to make some money this summer, where can you start?

You're the digital generation

You can learn so many things online - pick a skill that can make you money, like sourcing creative commons pictures online, building a very basic website, doing web design, online marketing... Then look for videos on YouTube or for courses on (paid membership) and learn to your heart's content. These skills are great and can be easily monetized (listen in at 8 minutes).

Conall asks - but how do you get paid for these skills? Knock on the door. Yes, it's as simple as that. Wear some shoe leather and knock on the doors of small businesses in your area with a simple message:

"I've noticed A, B and C about your (website, online presence, Facebook page, marketing online and offline). I can do or fix X, Y and Z for free - if you're satisfied, then let's talk about a bigger project for pay."

X, Y and Z can be: write one article to be submitted to the local paper; get the business 20 more Facebook followers; build a one-page Wordpress website. All these projects take a couple of hours. Then when you have demonstrated value, many businesses will be open to working with you.

Don't forget to ask for testimonials: ask each business you work with for feedback, even on the free projects. That way, even if the paid project doesn't work out, you'll still have a portfolio of sample projects and satisfied testers that you can show future prospective clients.

You can also knock on the digital doors of businesses on, for example, an online marketplace for freelancers and businesses that need the freelancers' services (listen in at 8:50).

GIYF - Google Is Your Friend

Conall refuses to believe that you can find something as simple as market research surveys to fill in online - and get paid for those! Yes, you can. Simply Google "money for surveys". I used to fill in those surveys in between classes in college and I would get around 5 euros per survey. A couple of those and I could take care of my grocery shopping for the week (listen in at 9:20).

Mystery shopping is another one. Google "mystery shopping Ireland" or "review products for money" and choose which formula suits you best. For example you might try out products from the comfort of your own home, and write reports for the company that makes those products (listen in at 10:10).

Mary shares her experience as a member in a focus group when she was in college - and it paid handsomely, 50 euros for an hour and a half of work. Mary also recommends cultivating skills that will enhance your CV. If you can't find a job this year, you can still lay the foundations for a great job next year: train to be a lifeguard, learn to make cocktails, be the treasurer of your local GAA club, do some bookkeeping for a local business... There are so many opportunities to be proactive and get a good start (listen in at 11:08).

And don't forget, just because it's a school project doesn't mean it should stop when school stops:
many Transition Year students have a mini-company. Why not take the summer to expand it? It's simply a matter of doing the same type of work you devoted to it when it was a school project, only on a slightly bigger scale. Go and talk to people and try to get some exposure for your project: that's all it takes to start some fruitful networking and you never know how far it will take you (listen in at 12 minutes).

For more tips and more details, listen to the podcast here.

Conall O Móráin Interview on TodayFM with Susan HayesCulleton

The #SavvyTeenAcademy is a high-focus week of transformative learning

Yes, you can have it all: excel at school and college, prepare to flourish at work, and maximise the fun of all your life experiences. Build your toolbox of skills and strategies in all areas - whatever the situation, you'll have just the right practical tool to make the most of it. Practice those skills in a supportive, affirming environment. Meet other people just like you and cheer each other on as you watch your potential unfold.

All these things require a specific mindset and approach

We're Monica Murphy and Susan HayesCulleton, the founders of SavvyTeenAcademy. We've walked the walk: we've successfully been through school, college and jobs - and now we run our own businesses.

We've been there and done that.

We remember what it was like to dream big and have no idea where to start. We remember what it was like to feel embarrassed and not dare say it out loud: yes, you want the best life. Let us show you how to make it all possible!

The #SavvyTeenAcademy Team

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