Recently, I spoke with Kate about her quitting a full-time job, focused on motherhood, and starting her business. I started working with Kate Velez two years ago when I was on my path to quitting my own job and starting a business. She helped me fix my finances and transition into being the full-time entrepreneur that I am today.
Kate is a woman of many talents from designing a website to being the best virtual assistant ever. Kate Velez is also an accountant and has worked in the industry for over ten years. She became an educator and a government employee, but later on, as her little boy grew, she realized that she is much needed at home.
What was Kate’s first Side Hustle?
Her first side hustle was making accessories. Kate started making them for herself and give them as gifts without the initial intention to sell them. Later on, however, she would receive orders from friends and family with the need to customize freshwater pearls and different kinds of semi-precious stones.
“It’s all about the satisfaction because I enjoy doing it.”
Fast-forward to today, Kate has develop her love for acccessory making with Katie’s Trinkets.
How to Start a Side Hustle: Kate on Designing Websites?
But Kate did not stop making accessories. She also pursued designing websites which started with her dissatisfaction with the LiveJournal blog and Friendster layout. Friendster was a social media where you can express your personality through templates. More gigs for designing templates came her way and that’s when she developed her passion for coding.
How to Start a Side Hustle: Earning from Writing
Since college, Kate has always enjoyed writing poems. She would write on tissue papers, notebooks, any kind of paper where she can jot down her thoughts.
She started writing short stories in 2009 when she was newly married and without a job. Kate got bored at home and decided to write her first short story.
Nowadays, she’s running her own short story publishing company in the Philippines called Litart Hub, where Kate would gather stories from Filipino writers and create an anthology out of it. The books entitled Silver Linings: Stories of Love, Hope & Courage in a Pandemic Setting and A Journey Through Eight Realms.
Starting a Business: How Do You Price Your Work?
In starting a business, it is essential to know how much should you price your work. Kate did struggle with pricing her work initially because she felt that her work is not worth that much, so sometimes she would charge for much less. Sometimes, she offered her services for free.
Nowadays, she would be the one to warn me that I’m pricing too low.
Pricing your work too low is a common mistake of entrepreneurs. And the first step to overcome this is to be the first ones to take pride of our work. Remember that one of the reasons you ugo into business is you want to make a profit.
The business is likely to fail if you are charging less. Even a business that only manage to breakeven will not be able to grow.
If you are not earning enough from your business, then it is not sustainable. You are not able to take care of yourself and can destroy your morale too.
The good news is you have the flexibility on how you set your prices.
In case you are wondering, here are the factors to consider in pricing your work:
You have to consider your material, labor and overhead cost. The material cost refers to the goods you used upon providing the service. Labor is the price you pay to yourself or to someone you hire to provide the service, while the overhead cost is any kind of indirect cost you incur as you work on the project such as your monthly rent, taxes, insurance, and office supplies.
Research your competitors and see how much are they charging and its inclusions. We don’t recommend that you should make your pricing cheaper than that – rather, you must check if you can offer a better service or ambiance. What other factors can set you apart?
You can always play around with pricing, but attracting a customer because you charge less may not gather loyalty and is not good in the long-term.
Perceived Value to the customer
How much is your customer willing to pay? Who are your target customers?
You need to put yourself in your customers’ shoes and understand how much are they willing to allocate for the type of service you are offering.
Most importantly, how does your service potentially help them?
Yes, pricing is an art. Just like how you deal with your services and marketing.
Kate on Juggling Motherhood and Starting a Business
The pandemic made it more difficult for moms to work from home. Children need more guidance in their studies because studying online requires parents’ involvement. Kate admitted that she struggled with time management.
Now during summer holidays, a great solution she found was buying a book filled with science experiments to keep her son busy.
It is important to design activities for your children which they can also do on their own.
Kate’s Advice on Quitting a Full-Time Job, Focusing on Motherhood and Working From Home
The first several months during the transition of quitting a full-time job and starting a business is going to be difficult. Working from home independently means if you don’t work, there’ll be no money to sustain your needs.
You have to constantly market yourself, put yourself out there and you have to continue working.
You have to be prepared to face the challenges ahead, but it’s all going to be worth it. Your child will soon grow up and the time to make great memories is now.
Working from home has its perks because you can witness how your child is growing, and you can guide them every step of the way. That’s already a great reward!
Once they reach a certain age, children will tend to explore by themselves. They will be more independent. So, savour the chance to be with them while they are young.