Flipping Your Side Hustle into a Legit Company: Formation

While writing this post, I am two weeks and some change shy of my 32nd birthday. Pop champagne! I have been an entrepreneur for 10 of those fabulous years in various industries. I have seen some moderate success, and there have been times where broke was my first, middle, and last name. Thankfully, I have a career as an IT Project Program Management Advisor that has kept my household afloat despite the wild-heart of my entrepreneurial spirit. It is with my whole heart that I wish for no one to spend unnecessarily or blindly make some of the asinine business decisions that I have made in the past.

I have always been a dreamer and I always knew how to make a dollar out of fifteen cents; and because I graduated with a B.S. in Commerce and Business Administration, my friends somehow got the impression that I knew everything about business…fresh out of The University. So, they would often ask me about legitimizing their hustle.  Whenever I got the call  to help them start their business from nothing but a concept or to write a business plan, I did the research and delivered top notch results. After struggling to find my passion, I listened to my very first “client” and decided to turn my side hustle of writing business plans and forming businesses into a full-blown Small Business Consulting firm. Just now, I have become inspired to deliver this “free game” in a series.

Though anyone can make this information applicable to their situation, Millennials are often stereotyped in a negative light. I wanted to provide a ray of sunshine to my generational demographic in regards to demystifying how to start a business while having Moet taste on a Four Loko budget. Kings, Queens, and those in-between I present to you the first part of my series The Millennial Guide to Flipping Your Side Hustle into a Legit Company: Formation.

Major Key

Picking the best-fitting business structure for your company is so important! As a Small Business Consultant, I usually advise my clients to start with an LLC (Limited Liability Corporation) over choosing a Sole Proprietorship. It provides limited liability protection in which your personal assets are not considered for company debts and other financial responsibilities. If you are an Independent Sales Consultant or similar, Sole Proprietorship may work for your situation. However, please consult with your accountant and/or business consultant. If you need guidance, do not hesitate to contact my company Renvest Consulting Group. We have an affordable bundle that can be made in payment installments which includes the following with a 30-day turnaround:

  • LLC Filing: State of your choice – excludes state filing fees
  • Legal Operating Agreement: required in some states but is essential especially if entering into a multi-member LLC
  • Business License and Permit Compliance Report for all municipality levels
  • 200 Standard-Issue Business Cards
  • High-resolution logo.

New Phone, Who Dis?! 

Please, I beg of thee, have a separate number for your business activity. Before you say, “I don’t have the money!” hear me out (read me out? *shrugs*). You don’t have to start out with an additional cell phone, just yet. I heard that Google Voice is being phased out, so here are some of my affordable suggestions based on personal experience.

  1. My favorite second number alternative is Sideline App for Business. It gives you a second number with the ability to share with a team. The phone rings simultaneously to everyone that has team access to the number. It’s feature-rich and only costs $9.99/month.
  2. Desk phones can be used for more than collecting dust…who knew?! If you have an office space or would prefer a traditional phone setup, Vonage Business gets my vote hands down. It has all the bells and whistles one would want and need in a Business Phone System, and you can also download the complementary app to take calls and texts on-the-go. I can’t list everything that’s included on here, but my absolutely favorite is the auto-attendant feature (Press 1 for X, Press 2 for Y, etc). What makes this feature go slap off is that you have the option to have a voice actor record the auto attendant and voicemail options for you! From my past experience, I spent around a smooth $50/month with the phone being included for free; the only thing you need to have in place is a reliable internet connection. Contact Vonage Business to get the most up-to-date pricing.

Feds Watching

Before you can get a business bank account, credit, or anything dealing with being recognized as a legitimate company, you NEED a Federal EIN (Employer Identification Number) issued by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). This 9-digit number is essential to establishing your business footprint across the board. There are a kazillion companies offering to register your EIN for a small fee. Save yourself a few coins, and complete the registration yourself. Filing an EIN IS 100% free if you register yourself! The IRS has a very convenient EIN online application; and in most cases, you should receive the EIN number after the application has been submitted. By all means, if you are struggling with completing the form yourself, contact us at Renvest Consulting Group to assist you. EIN Registration is included in our Business Formation 101 Bundle.

Whew! We covered a lot, and I am beat! I hope I was able to give you some guidance in part one of this series – Formation. I listed the subtopics in order per how I help my clients in setting up their business. However, feel free to inbox on any social media platforms or contact me via my webpage if you have any additional questions. Be on the lookout for the second part in this series – Money Moves.

Make sure you subscribe to my website and follow me on all social media platforms so that you can be notified of blog posts, promotions, events, new merchandise, and more. My business consulting services are always available to you, no matter where you are.  Please contact me if you’re in need of a business coach, business plan, company formation, project management, or administrative management.

In honor of black history month, own your entrepreneurial spirit by rocking my BOSS’D UP Unisex French Terry Raglan Sweatshirt. The quality is nice, and it has so much versatility! I have a $10 off coupon on 2 or more sweatshirts by using promo code FORTHECULTURE.

 

Crystal is an IT Program Management Advisor by profession and a certified Small Business Consultant solopreneur by design with a undying love for trap music and old school R & B . She has a profound passion for assisting aspiring and existing small business owners in actualizing their dreams and turning their passion into revenue. In providing services such as Business Coaching, Business Development, Business Planning and more she hopes to help small businesses soar to unseen heights. Crystal can be reached by email info@renvestconsultinggroup.com. You can also follow her on Facebook and Instagram @renvestconsulting.

Issa Degree! Now What? 7 Tips for the College to Career Transition

She Believed She Could so She Did

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Congratulations! You did it!

For some of us, a job offer was made before we walked across the stage this year. So proud of you! May you continue to flourish during your Blessing Season. But for many of us, we have the degree but aren’t necessarily prepared career wise. Well now is not the time to hit panic as you see your friends enjoy the fruit of their new found 60 hour work weeks. I am no career guru but I can offer you a few tips I have learned along the way to make your transition from college to career a little easier.

OATMEAL IS BETTER THAN NO MEAL

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Entry-Level

I get it. You have loans and you clearly need to pay them back. That entry level starting salary was NEVER a part of the plan. But sometimes those entry level positions can unlock doors to salaries, promotions, and references you would have never imagined. There may be a bit of a sacrifice in the beginning. But as the saying goes, It gets greater later. With the right game plan, make your entry-level position work for you.

Recent Graduate Positions

There are quite a few companies and agencies who offer internships and positions specifically for people who have recently graduate within the past 1 to 2 years. For example, our federal government offers a Recent Graduate Program. When searching for jobs make sure to check out programs specifically for recent graduates.

Volunteering within your degree field

“Sis, didn’t you just say oatmeal is better than no meal?” Hear me out. Some of you interned every summer during your collegiate career. Unfortunately, there are others who did not take advantage of internship opportunities. You are now considered a recent graduate with NO EXPERIENCE. I am not saying you will have to volunteer 40 hours of your time. But gaining experience needed within your field at 5 or even 10 hours a week looks A LOT better than no experience at all. I would suggest Volunteer Match as a great way to start. Type in a job title you are comfortable committing your time doing and you will see results closely related within you area. Some organizations offer remote positions as well.

SUCCESS IS THE SUM OF SMALL EFFORTS REPEATED DAILY

Professional Development

If you know you aren’t proficient in Microsoft Access or Excel, enroll in a class to master it. If your job field requires you to use a certain software you aren’t familiar with, LEARN IT! Professional development doesn’t have to start on the job. Never stop adding value to what you have to offer.

Graduate School

I tread lightly on the suggestion of graduate school. I do not believe in adding more debt. But I do believe in enhancing your chances of getting the career of your dreams. A Master’s degree and better is needed in some job fields. One way to alleviate cost is to work for a College who offers their graduate programs to their employees for free. There are also other companies who offer tuition reimbursement.

IT’S NOT WHO YOU KNOW, IT’S WHO KNOWS YOU

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Join a Professional Organization

It is very important to join a professional organization related to your degree and/or career choice. Most professional organizations offer recent grad and/or student rates at a substantial discount compared to regular annual fees. I would suggest CareerOneStop as a great way to find professional organizations tailored to your career choice.

Alumni Organizations

I would also suggest joining your local alumni chapter. You will be quite surprised the amount of support you will receive from people who have something so sacred in common with you. Majority of Alumni Organizations offer discounts for recent graduates as well.

Honorable Mention: A great way to network and meet people with interest similar to yours and keep you plugged in career wise is an awesome website called Meet-Up. Meet-Up offers various groups for people with similar interest.

Note: It is imperative that we do not pay fees and collect emails month to month. STAY ACTIVE! Try to make time for the monthly meetings. If there is a community service event or workshop…GO! 

IF NOT ME, WHO? IF NOT NOW, WHEN?

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A small nugget of advice for all: NEVER STOP THE HUSTLE! Companies merge, restructure, and layoff EVERY YEAR! Never become complacent at any company or position. Always have a back up plan to the back up plan. Continue to network and build an arsenal of professional connections.  Continue personal & professional development to perfect your skills. Now go claim your Blessings! Go Sis!