Author Topic: Should I do this side job?  (Read 2533 times)

cbr shadow

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Should I do this side job?
« on: December 03, 2012, 09:39:36 AM »
I use AutoCAD a lot for my career and I'm very good at it.  I recently saw an ad on craiglist where someone wanted to be trained in AutoCAD.  I responded and told the guy I'd do it for $20/hr.  I did the first lesson and it went really well, but only lasted 2 hours for the first day.
Here's the dilema..

The good:
- He's eager to learn and wants to get lots of lessons in
- I somewhat enjoy the teaching
- Pays $20/hr which isn't huge money (I make more at my day job) but it's cash untaxed.  (3) 2-hour lessons weekly is $120/weeek or $480/month - pretty good!

The bad:
- I drive to him.  This requires 25 minutes each way.  I get ~65 MPG so it ends up being about 3/4 gallon of gas, or $2.60 round-trip per lesson.
- Time is an issue - I value the time I have with my family, so being away for an extra 3 hours, 3 times per week does cut into our time together.

So what would you do?  I make ~$50k before deductions at my day job, and the wife makes about $100k before deductions. 
If I dont continue these lessons I KNOW I'll start looking for other means of extra income because I'm always searching for that.. for that reason I'm leaning towards continuing the lessons.
Thoughts?

Karl

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Re: Should I do this side job?
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2012, 09:55:51 AM »
It sounds like the drive causes the difficulty in this case.  Can you ask this person to come to you? 

Russ

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Re: Should I do this side job?
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2012, 10:04:07 AM »
I agree that the drive is the problem. If you take drive time into account, you're really only making $13/hour or so, which is not nearly as good as $20. If you could get your student to drive to you that would be great, otherwise maybe you could find some CAD consulting work online which you could do from home. That would pay at least as well, and you wouldn't have to go anywhere

KingCoin

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Re: Should I do this side job?
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2012, 10:27:50 AM »
To me, it sounds like you're selling yourself short at $20/hr for short-term skilled labor. Compare that to something like piano lessons which commonly cost $30-60/hr. It's a tough conversation to tell your current client that your rate is going up $30, but it's worth it if that's the point that makes it worth your while. Is it possible to do remote teaching over Skype or similar programs? I know music teachers who offer lower rates for this kind of arrangement.

At the very least, you should continue to advertise on Craigslist. I'd start at a price point of $40/hr and offer a discount to $30-35/hr for bulk lesson purchases.

trammatic

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Re: Should I do this side job?
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2012, 10:28:48 AM »
A few suggestions:

1) That rate for private tutoring seems quite low.  Perhaps double it?  Or if not,
2) Include a $25 fee per session for travel time and expenses.  That would also encourage him to bunch sessions together.  Or
3) Experiment with a Webinar service to give the training from home.  Here is a list of 9 free ones. http://www.freshtechtips.com/2012/01/9-best-free-webinar-software-for.html


chucklesmcgee

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Re: Should I do this side job?
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2012, 11:02:02 AM »
3) Experiment with a Webinar service to give the training from home.  Here is a list of 9 free ones. http://www.freshtechtips.com/2012/01/9-best-free-webinar-software-for.html

Yeah, these are pretty good. Not sure how much precision you need to do Autocad, but another option would be a free remote desktop login client, like logmein.com. You can control his desktop, talk to him over skype/phone and the great thing is you can then test him to make sure he can do it without having to worry about a difference in your setups or switching seats. There's maybe a 3 second delay between what he does and when you see it but that shouldn't be a big deal.