In September 2022, we hosted our annual Worklife Next Summit–a day-long future of work event showcasing people, tech, and trends reshaping the next era of work and life. Our summit explores what's next in making the world more accessible, flexible, creative, and human–where the office reflects the future and anyone can become a creative! But, for those who didn't have a chance to attend–fear not! We'll share our favorite tips and tidbits here–just for you! In this session, we hear journalist Jared Linn interviewing Wonsulting CEO Jonathan Javier about his approach to building multiple streams of income.
There's a new kind of worker in town, and it's not your typical tenured employee. The current economy and work landscape have changed rapidly over the last decade with the rise of flexible working hours and the gig economy, which has significantly impacted Millennials and Gen Z.
The gig economy has created a new kind of worker: one who works in a variety of roles or has multiple streams of income: the multi-earner. The gig economy has created new ways for people to make money by sharing their services with others through platforms like Uber or Airbnb. In addition, they can make money through different types of work opportunities with companies that offer freelance jobs like Upwork or Fiverr.
Many young adults today want multiple streams of income, because they know that one source of income may not be enough to reach their personal goals.
The answer: to create multiple streams of income.
The good news is that there are various ways to do this—and we've got some ideas to make it happen! Or Jonathan Javier does.
At our Worklife Next Summit, freelance journalist Jared Lindzon sat down with Jonathan Javier of Wonsulting to talk about finding success through revenue streams in the era of the multi-earner. We talked about:
- Using social media to find job opportunities and bypass the application process
- How to make multiple streams of income
- Becoming recession-proof
Let's hear what he has to say!
Rooting for the Underdog
We asked Jonathan to share his professional background and how he became the CEO of Wonsulting with six income streams!
Jonathan is a University of California–Riverside, a career content creator, founder, and CEO of Wonsulting. He's also held roles at Snap, Google, and Cisco, and has been featured on Forbes 30 Under 30.
Founded in 2019, Wonsulting is an organization dedicated to making underdogs winners. Through various products and services–ahem, revenue streams–they help job seekers with non-traditional backgrounds land their dream job. Needless to say, we trust Jonathan's advice on success–whether at a big corporation or in entrepreneurship.
So what does an underdog cheerleader say about landing the job of your dreams? Maybe you want flexible working hours or to explore a new skill set. Or you're looking to level up.
Either way, Jonathan has answers.
Use Social Media to Create Opportunities
Before we dove into his insight on creating multiple revenue streams, we asked him to give us a little more detail about his journey using social media to find job opportunities.
"Where [my passion] stems from is actually from my own career," says Jonathan. "When I was applying to jobs at big name companies, like Google, Goldman Sachs, Deloitte…I remember applying and thinking to myself, 'Shoot, I'm never going to get in because of the school I attended and my background.'"
And he was right. He got rejected by all of them.
"However, by utilizing social media, I was actually able to land all my different roles at Snap, Google, and Cisco," he adds.
In these situations, he never even applied to them. At this point, we are ALL EARS for how he managed that. The ultimate answer: growing and using your social network.
Connecting on LinkedIn and Beyond
There's a reason the button on an individual's LinkedIn profile says "connect" instead of "add" or "follow". The mission of LinkedIn is simple: connect the world's professionals to make them more productive and successful.
And Jonathan is basically a Jedi at this concept.
Getting those big jobs at top tech companies happened "just by networking.” “I would find hiring managers, then utilize those relationships to eventually lead to different opportunities, to get those interviews, and eventually get offers.”
Jonathan went from feeling like he didn't have many career prospects coming out of school to having recruiters give him opportunities. Talk about flipping the script!
Jared has Jonathan break down his process, and he makes it seem really easy–if you're comfortable with creating and pushing out content:
- Strategize about which companies you're interested in
- Build a network of recruiters and hiring managers
- Once you get one interview, post about it on LinkedIn and tag the interviewer
So what does that do?
"When someone likes and comments on your post on LinkedIn, all of their followers will see it," says Jonathan. "So all of the recruiters or hiring managers, and their connections, would see my content. Then they'd view my profile, and I'd connect with them."
Today, Jonathan has a staggering LinkedIn following of over 200k connections. So it's safe to say the snowball effect of social media can work to your advantage in this way.
Did we mention he also found a way to monetize those LinkedIn connections? But we'll get to that later.
Beyond LinkedIn, SaaS companies are emerging as leaders of new professional networking sites. Niche professional platforms are popping up everywhere. From Dev.to to Moonlight, workers in similar industries are finding new ways to connect, share insights, and find opportunities. The possibilities are endless!
The Job Application is Dead
So not everyone can thrive as a technical content creator like Jonathan. And that's exactly why Jared asked him for his advice for those struggling to land a role they want.
To sum it up, most people apply for jobs and just hope to hear back. Even networking events can't help you these days.
Don't be like most people.
"Most people apply for jobs, right? It's a very traditional way," says Jonathan. "What I suggest to clients is reaching out to the hiring managers and identifying the roles you qualify for."
Reaching out to those hiring managers and recruiters allows you to establish a relationship regardless of whether you've applied for an open role. This way, you can get an interview because you're known as a qualified candidate. You have a relationship with the person responsible for hiring, instead of applying and hoping the applicant tracking software (ATS) pulls your application for review.
"Establish those relationships with individuals, because they may know opportunities that might not even be posted on online platforms," he adds.
Social networking is the new networking.
This is really great advice–but we'd be letting you down if we didn't explain ATS a little bit more. ATS is a software program that collects and sorts applications based on keywords within the application. At their best, they use language processing and artificial intelligence to screen resumes, identify keyword matches, and leverage algorithms to measure your qualifications before the resume even hits a recruiter's inbox.
The pros, you can learn to draft your resume in a way that aligns with what an ATS is looking for. The cons, you can't lean on real-life people to measure your potential.
Building your professional social network is the key to overcoming ATS.
"You see on LinkedIn Jobs where it says 200 hundred candidates have applied. The thing is, most people won't reach out to establish the human connection between themselves and another individual," says Jonathan. "So imagine you being the one person who reaches out–you're going to be the one person who stands out."
A Better Goal: Multiple Streams of Income
Getting to the topic at hand. Building different streams of income is the next big thing in career and financial success.
Did we mention Jonathan has six?
You may be asking, why multiple streams of income? Well, who doesn't want financial stability?
The days when one person could work at a job for decades and make enough money to support their family are over. In today's economy, people are working longer hours and taking on more responsibilities than ever. And this trend will only continue as the workforce and job roles change.
In the last few years, there has been a massive shift in the way we think about money. We've seen an increased focus on financial freedom and passive income, but less discussed is how this affects our ability to support ourselves.
So what does that mean for your financial future? First, it means it's time to start thinking about multiple streams of income. Rather than relying on one job that offers basic benefits and a paycheck every two weeks, you'll need multiple sources of income coming into your life, so that you can have consistent income without having to worry about Social Security running out or not saving enough for retirement.
At Worklife, we believe employers can play a more active role in helping employees with their personal goals. This is why we invested in Keep Financial, a platform offering flexible compensation and benefits, so workers can focus on what they are best at, instead of worrying about money.
Types of Income Streams
So what are the different streams of income you can generate?
First, let's establish the difference between active and passive:
- An active income stream is an income received from a job or business venture that you are actively participating in–or working day to day.
- A passive income stream is an income that is gained without active participation. For example, investments like stocks or real estate.
Financial advisors generally recommend a mixture of both active and passive income streams. How many income streams should you have? However many you need to feel financially comfortable.
In our session, Jonathan breaks down his 6 streams of active and passive income:
- 1-on-1 coaching
- Brand partnerships
- Online course
- Group coaching program
- Resume AI
- Stock market investments
"For Wonsulting, we will do 1-on-1 coaching, whether with resumes, LinkedIn profiles, job search strategy–you name it, we got it," says Jonathan. Jonathan started out conducting these coaching sessions himself. However, after this business stream grew, he hired other coaches to take care of these sessions.
And what about brand partnerships? He gets brand partnerships based on his TikTok, Instagram, and LinkedIn content.
"I also have an online course which goes over the job search–the entire recruiting cycle," says Jonathan.
"We go through how you land a job starting from creating your resume to negotiating your compensation."
He also conducts this guidance in a longer-term group coaching program and recently launched an artificial intelligence platform that helps job candidates build their resumes with an AI resume builder and resume bullet point generator in less than 15 minutes. (Imagine how many hours in a day we could get back from using AI for all of our resume customizations?!) Finally, as passive income, Jonathan also invests in the stock market. Needless to say, Jonathan can expect a steady stream of income each month.
Jared asks, "You have some that you're working day-to-day, and others are kind of set it and forget it–all the work is happening up front. Is that something you think most people are able to achieve?"
While all of this sounds like a lot, there are ways you can learn to scale your revenue streams in a manageable way. The more passive income that you don't actively have to nurture, the better.
Think About How to Scale
Jonathan didn't build his empire on his own. Instead, he recognized outsourcing opportunities and got comfortable letting go of responsibilities so he could scale.
"To be honest, it's very difficult," says Jonathan. "But the thing is when you have a team behind you that is also able to help you be successful, then you'll succeed."
He provides a really great example of the way he built up his brand partnership revenue stream. He had requests coming in, and he was saying yes to whatever price point they offered.
An eager beaver much? Maybe. But what he did next was brilliant.
"I remember my calendar being filled and doing all of that manually," says Jonathan. "But then I hired a Chief of Staff and a Partnership's Lead to help me organize a lot of these things. So you definitely need a team behind you to help you."
Is Single Stream Income Dead Too?
Whether freelancing or running a business–your business can't grow if you only offer one thing. These days, that concept is the same for regular employees, too.
In today's economy, you need to have multiple streams of income. The days of a single source are over. We're reimagining work.
"We hear a lot of talk about having a side hustle," says Jared. "I wouldn't say it's necessarily the norm, but it's not out of the ordinary for people to have more than one career. Do you see this as a bigger trend? Is the the traditional single stream income that pays the majority of the bills on its way out?"
Not only does Jonathan agree–but he's seeing side hustles turn into main hustles more and more.
Starting with Side Hustles
"When I was at Google and Cisco, Wonsulting was actually my side hustle when I first started it in January 2019," says Jonathan. "And then I realized, 'Oh, shoot–you can actually get paid for doing one-on-one coaching and also creating content. That's when I converted from being that side hustle to a main hustle."
Jonathan works with many people who have entertained the idea of being their own entrepreneur and boss. During the pandemic, Jonathan advised people to consider turning that extra downtime at home into a job or side hustle while working full-time.
"The ideal situation is do to something that you want to do, and then it develops into a money-making endeavor later on down the line," says Jonathan.
So how do you get through the trial and error period?
Knowing When to Grow or Give Up
Jared asked, "How do you know when an opportunity is worth pursuing and when it's time to cut your losses and move on–do you have a sense of where that line should be drawn?"
Jonathan's best advice: "Feedback, feedback, feedback is what I always stress to my team."
Build your community and gather feedback. A few questions you can ask are:
- What's the most significant pain point I'm trying to solve? Or successful at solving?
- Is this something people would actually use?
- Would people be willing to pay for these things?
It requires a lot of research and surveys, building a community of loyal followers, and using them as a small beta testing group to see if your product or service concept will sell.
Another approach is to establish an income stream with what you genuinely love doing. The more and more you put your talents and passion into the world, you'll come to a point where people are willing to pay you to do it. Then, when you recognize you have something special–monetize it.
With today's economic uncertainty, Jared asks Jonathan how he advises people to find opportunities that can be more resilient or recession-proof.
"Diversifying or expanding your income streams sounds pretty tempting given the economic situation we're in," says Jared. "If you have any advice for identifying those things that might be a little bit more recession-proof or a little bit easier to continue pursuing as the economy fluctuates…"
Jonathan got lucky that his company grew because of the pandemic, not despite it. Career and entrepreneurship coaching became in high demand while layoffs were taking the workforce by storm.
His advice: "There's so much free information, whether on Google, LinkedIn, Instagram, or TikTok. People are posting about their side hustles and even how much revenue they're making."
Use this free information as a resource to identify job roles or entrepreneurship routes that are active and viable right now. Jonathan encourages people to build their social network and build relationships with people sharing their success. Chances are, they'll be ready to share their insights and advice, too.
"People are actually more willing to help than you think because there's such a big pie, where, if, for example, people want to grow a career consulting venture, they'll give advice."
Want to build a passive revenue stream with Airbnb? Reach out to successful hosts. Want to partner with outdoor brands? Reach out to your favorite outdoor influencers.
We're sure Jared and Jonathan could have talked about this topic all day, but we have a tight schedule at Next Summit.
To sum things up, learning how to make extra streams of income is the best way to become recession-proof, achieve financial stability, and build generational wealth. The best ways to make multiple streams of income is to do what you love, build relationships, and monetize!
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