Part-time, Full-time, Employed, Partners?
Should you do this part-time, full-time, employed, with partners? Those are all viable routes. Let's talk about this as a side gig. I have friends that have their 100-plus thousand dollar jobs in IT, programming, tech, all those different things, that they will side-bust and shoot three- to five-thousand dollar weddings on weekends, and may make another 60, 70 grand a year doing that. Is there anything wrong with this pathway? No, it's really great. It carries less risk, it's a better fit for photography as a passion. I don't want to do all the other stuff that are involved in running a business, I just want to kind of focus in on this, and dual income, they can make upwards of 200 to 250 thousand dollars just with this as a side gig. The problem is that it takes more time to launch your business. Eventually, there becomes a work-life balance. So for all of them, they reach that critical point where they're getting so much demand for their work that they have to pick one or the other, ...
'cause it's not sustainable for your family to be able to have you gone every single weekend plus during the week for more than a few years. Your time is also limited, and there's going to be limited scalability. Who's thinking about this as a full-time? 'Kay. So full-time as basically a sole proprietor, that just means running it by yourself, okay? So if you're running it by yourself, it's faster to launch, quicker to grow and develop, more time for scaling and development, better focus and balance in terms of work-life balance, significant risk, it can get lonely and depressing. I know that's a weird one, but it seriously can be lonely and depressing when you're the only person in your business. So if you have a spouse or a partner that can support in that, it really makes a huge difference. Photography is a partnership. I get asked this question quite a bit. You can double or triple the effort going into it, which makes launch very quick. Faster growth and development, division of labor provides better focus. Conflict resolution is a huge one here. And this is what I'm gonna say. If you ever consider a partnership, a few simple words. If you can fight like family, good. But if you come to me and say, "I'm thinking about a partnership. "We have a great relationship. "We never fight." I'm gonna say, "Walk away from it." It'll be done within six months. You can't do it. If you can fight like family, and this relationship has been tested over time, consider it. But otherwise, walk away. Equity and work income, this is gonna become the greatest stress. Which partner is doing more or less than the other? Less autonomy in decision-making. Now you have to consider where your time is going. So for me, with Justin and Chris, every time I say I want to do something, I have to go and ask them what's best for the business. These are the things I'd like to do. What do you guys want me to focus on first? And a lot of times, it's not what I wanna do. My time is not my own. Photography is career with a studio. Fastest artistic development, there's no risk, good reward in salary and income. You can learn the business, you can think different, because you probably would never think on the level of a Lin and Jirsa unless you'd actually worked there, and you saw what the systems were in place, right? You have a career platform and a business springboard, so after a few years, we've seen our shooters go off and start very successful studios, because they've watched for three to five years, and then they go out and do. So again, this is another viable route. There is less upside potential when you are working for a studio. It's not to say you won't make good money. A lot of our shooters, they make between 80 to 120 thousand dollars when they get up to master status. So they make really good money. But it takes time, a lot of time, and most people aren't patient enough to stay through that process.