Take Your Side Hustle to the Next Level

With the number of minority-owned businesses increasing by almost 46 percent to nearly 6 million since 2002, it's prime time for corporate climbers who have hit a glass ceiling to enter the entrepreneurs' circle. "You work your nine-to-five to make a living, then you work your five-to-nine to make your fortune," says Elon Bomani, author of Dynamic Diva Dollars: For Women Who Aren't Afraid to Be Millionaires. "Having a side hustle is no longer a choice. In 2011 it's a necessity." Before posting a sign that says you're open for business, take stock of the numbers—from start-up capital to overhead expenses to first-year projections. You also must develop a sound business plan and enlist an A-team of advisers. To help your side hustle blossom, we asked two successful entrepreneurs—a stationery designer and a justice of the peace—how they grew their businesses into thriving ventures. And then we tapped the expertise of business consultant Melinda F. Emerson to up the game of these savvy businesswomen with more strategic advice.
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