Getting Started Square One

Getting Started – Square 1

Module Description: blending what you WANT and NEED to do in life

Pre-test: you are really tempted to start your first sideline during the summer before your senior year of high school. Already you have a rough idea about what you “want” to do. After reading some of the sideline modules, you believe it’s possible to overcome your initial fear and reluctance. However, you’re also facing the reality of what you’ve most “need” to do in your life which is make plans to go to college. You understand the application process to seven or eight schools is time consuming and distressing. Your folks can help you out some for college expenses, but only about one third the cost per year. You need to come up with at least $12,000 per year. Is it possible to do this predictably through a sideline activity, and limit total time required to less than 10 hours per week? Can you blend what you want to do with what you need to do?

By yourself, initially, answer these 5 questions in the blank space provided. It will take you perhaps 2 hours or more to complete by yourself – it’s fine to leave one or two sections unfinished. You will gain more out of this exercise if you’ve completed these Sideline courses: #5, #6, and #10. After you’ve completed this module and taken the complimentary Sideline Preference Indicator (SPI), you are welcome to request a confidential online initial review session with one of our listed mentors.

Skill Components:

1 does my sideline idea address the first law of money?

2 what are the 10 steps of my current strategy to launch a minimally viable sideline?

3 how can I gain Sideline expertise without being expert already?

4 is my plan realistic for attracting and growing customers?

5 when I run the numbers, do they give me what I need?

Skill Descriptions [use this sample story to craft your own sideline idea]

1 does my sideline idea address the first law of money?

The Story:

I intend to launch a student-to-student tutoring program at my high school. For whatever reason, I happened to” tutor” some of my classmates who were struggling in math, first in the sixth grade. Initially it was just 10 or 15-minutes at a time. And then it started increasing to a half hour or more. I never did feel like I was being taken advantage of, nor rescuing lazy students who wouldn’t open the book. I assumed, somewhat accurately I believe, that ineffective or insufficient classroom teaching was the cause of student’s poor performance. So realistically I knew years ago that I enjoyed tutoring and was becoming good at doing it. Only in passing did it come across my mind that I could charge for this. Given that

Copyright © 2018 Dr. James Clark

professional tutors charged $75 per hour for high school math tutoring, I now realize that I meet all three criteria for the first law of money: I enjoy what I do; I’m good at it; and people will pay for it.

Your Story:

2 what are the best 10 steps for launching a “small-start” sideline?

In order to gain traction with classmates before the school year ends, I will do an immediate “small-start” with my sideline – also called MVP, or minimally viable product start. By doing this I may pick up classmates attending summer school, or kids who simply want a refresher before enrolling in their next year math class. So in the next 30 days before my Junior year at school comes to an end, I intend to do the following 10 action steps as part of my current strategy:

1 craft 30 day “small-start” plan, including a 30-second statement of my uniqueness as a tutor

2 w pencil and paper draft a simple flyer for distribution, showing details, including price

3 go visit a school counselor I trust to share my idea – ask for suggestions – show draft flyer

4 ask 2 of my trusted classmates if they might also help me

5 identify 2 possible locations for doing tutoring, w launch starting end of May

6 do google search on student-tutoring best practices, including financial data

7 look at free and low cost simple web pages for this service – that I can design in 1 hour

8 ask parents to set up joint debit account w Zelle quick-pay, and paypal processing

9 plan on distributing flyers to all the counselors, math teachers, and area boys/girls club

10 ask 3 kids I’ve tutored to write 1 paragraph references/testimonials for me

—See sample answers at the end of this module

10 Steps of Your Current Strategy:

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3 how can I gain expertise as a math tutor without being an expert already?

It will be helpful to spend at least two hours doing Google search and research on these three questions:

Q. what are best practices used by high school math tutors?

Q. how to produce best results with math tutoring for high school students?

Q. which common pitfalls in high school math tutoring are to be avoided?

What are 3 important areas of online research might you do to learn about best practices, ways of producing the best results, or common pitfalls to avoid?

Q.

Q.

Q.

4 is my plan realistic for attracting and growing customers?

Now we are back to where my parents want me to be – focusing on what I NEED to do to help pay for my own college expenses, which will likely be $12,000 per year, or $1,000 per month. And ideally I would like to do this setting my own hours and not spending more than 8-10 hours per week. So here the questions I came up with, to help me determine if I can actively generate customers for high school math tutoring during the summer, when most students want nothing to do with school or will already be enrolled in summer school.

LOW COST, IMMEDIATE ACTION, OUTREACH PLAN:

Q. what do the school counselors say is the best approach for reaching prospective clients or their parents before the school year ends next month?

Q. how can I immediately reach students on social media about summer math tutoring, without turning them off?

Q. separately, how can I best reach their parents about this summer tutoring option?

YOUR LOW COST, IMMEDIATE ACTION, OUTREACH PLAN:

Q what do your best information resources say is the best approach for reaching prospective clients?

Q. how can you immediately reach prospective customers on social media without turning them off?

Q. how can you best reach Family or friends of your preferred customers about your sideline offering?

5 when I run the numbers, do they give me what I NEED?

If not by summer, during my senior year of high school I need to generate at least $1,000 per month doing tutoring, and requiring no more than eight hours a week, if my sideline is to be viable after I start college. So I’m going to do a Break-even analysis to see if I can generate the income I need.

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BREAK-EVEN ANALYSIS FOR SUMMER ONLY:

Monthly 3-Mo Summer

Cost of College that I must cover each month of year $1,000 $ 3,000

Projected Summer Tutoring Revenue with Small-Start $ 600 $ 1,800

Summer Shortfall from Small-Start $ (400) $ (900)**

**Projected Revenue from Small-Start Math Tutoring @ 8-hours max/week

Weekly Fees Total Total

Hours $25 Sessions Revenue

June 4 $25 16 $400

July 8 $25 32 $800

Aug 6 $25 24 $600

3 MONTH TOTAL = $1800

PROJECTED BREAK-EVEN ANALYSIS FOR SENIOR YEAR OF HIGH SCHOOL:

Monthly 9-Mo Sr Year

Cost of College that I must cover each month $1,000 $ 9,000

Projected Monthly Tutoring Revenue during 9–month year $2,400 $ 9,200

Summer Shortfall from Small-Start $ (300) $ (900)**

**Projected Revenue from Math Tutoring @ 8 hours max/week

Weekly Fee/ 3-mo Total 3 mo-Total

Hours Hour Sessions Revenue

Sep-Nov 8 $25 96 $2400

Dec-Feb 8 $25 96 $2400

Mar-Ju 8 $25 96 $2400

9 MONTH TOTAL = $9200 with 2 helpers TOTAL = $9200 + $7700 = $16,900

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Conclusion: this Sideline can generate $800 a month if the Sideliner charges only $25 per session, or 1/3 the rate of a professional rate. If rates are raised 25% to $32 per hourly session he will be break even. Additionally, he can retain 2 fully qualified associate tutors for whom he will procure 8 clients a week, paying them $15/hour and retaining $10 as Manager. If both tutors each see 32 clients per month our Sideliner’s wages increase by 32clients x 2 helpers x $10 = $640/mon or $7700/year. His overall yearly income would be $16, 900 before taxes.

YOUR BREAK-EVEN ANALYSIS WITH BOTH SMALL-START AND FIRST YEAR PROJECTIONS:

BREAK-EVEN ANALYSIS FOR SUMMER ONLY:

Monthly 3-Mo Small Start

Cost of College that I must cover each month of year $1,000 $ 3,000

Additional Sideline costs:

Rent $______ $_______

Internet _______ ________

Helpers _______ ________

Insurance _______ ________

Supplies _______ ________

Transportation _______ ________

Other ________________ _______ ________

Other ________________ _______ ________

Total Costs $1,000 + $______ ________

Projected 3-month Small-Start Revenue for _________________ $ $_______

3-month Shortfall from Small-Start $ ( ) $ ( )**

**Projected Revenue from Small-Start @ 8-hours max/week

Weekly Fees Total Total

Hours $– Sessions Revenue

Month1 — $– — $______

Month2 — $– — $______

Month3 — $– — $______

3 MONTH TOTAL = $_______

PROJECTED BREAK-EVEN ANALYSIS FOR 1-YEAR OF OPERATIONS:

Monthly 9-Mo Sr Year

Cost of College that I must cover each month $1,000 $ 9,000

Total Operational Costs each month $——– $ ———-

Projected Monthly Revenue during 9–month year $——– $ ———

3-month Shortfall from Small-Start $ (300) $ (900)**

**Projected Revenue from Sideline @ 8 hours max/week

Weekly Fee/ 3-mo Total 3 mo-Total

Hours Hour Sessions Revenue

Jan-Mar 8 $– — $——

Apr-Jun 8 $– — $——

Jul-Sep 8 $– — $——

9-MONTH TOTAL = $——

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SAMPLE RESPONSES FOR STUDENT TUTORING PROGRAM

Q. what are the best 10 steps for launching a “small-start” sideline?

1 craft 30 day “small-start” plan, including a 30-second statement of my uniqueness as a tutor

Small-start Plan:

Since I’m starting less than a month before the school year ends, planning for a small number of tutoring candidates makes. I really have to hustle to inform teachers and counselors and students at my school about this new summertime tutoring service. Although my ultimate customers are students who need tutoring in math, the fact is their parents will pay for tutoring and probably make the final decision about it. And in that regard, the school teachers and counselors who work with students that need tutoring will also play a significant role and recommending my service. I also need to recognize that my enrollment numbers will probably be higher in June and July than in August when people take vacations. So for these reasons I’m shooting for 4 weekly student sign-ups in June, 8 in July, and 6 for August.

Your Small-Start Plan:

30-second spiel about the uniqueness of my tutoring service:

My byline: “Math made Useful”

“As a fellow student who experiences classmates struggling with math every day, I have keen appreciation for both how and why students need help with high school math. Much of the problem centers on students not seeing how these skills are useful. My very affordable and personalized tutoring service focuses on current approaches to teaching math at my high school, with emphasis on written as well as online resources for enhancing comprehension. Because I come from a family of 4 kids, I have learned the benefits of patience. I charge $25 per 50-minute session, and $40 for optional “Exam Prep” the night before an exam.”

Your byline:

30-second spiel about the uniqueness of your Sideline:

2 w pencil and paper draft a simple flyer highlights to be reworked for distribution, showing details, including price

SUMMER MATH TUTORING YOU CAN USE – $25/SESSION

Student-to-Student tutoring by a classmate who knows how and why you struggle with high school math. Give it a try!

Sign-ups being taken now – spaces are limited

Text 805-245-3434 and sign up for your weekly afternoon or evening slots. References are available upon request.

Bob XX

Cell:

Email:

2. Your Sample Flyer or web landing page

3 go visit a school counselor I trust to share my idea – ask for suggestions – show draft flyer

“I decided to go visit the highest rated counselor according to student comments. I also visited individually with the 3 highest rated math teachers according to reviews on “Rate My Teacher”. I asked each of them 4 questions, including:

Q. Do you think there is a need for inexpensive, student-to-student tutoring?

Q. Given what you know about me as a math student would you recommend me?

Q. As you review my pencil-drawn flyer and 30-second statement of my Sideline uniqueness, are there suggestions for improvement you might offer?

Q. Given timing, do you have suggestions for getting the word out in last month of the year?

3. You visit 1-4 trustable reviewers of your idea, and ask each these questions about:

Q need for your product or service with your target user groups?

Q Their willingness to recommend you?

Q Content of your flyer?

Q How to best get the word out about your idea?

4. ask 2 of trusted classmates if they might also be helpers, by agreeing to:

“As of May, a month before school is out, I don’t believe I need additional tutors working for me since I’m just starting out. But I do need dependable and credible helpers to get the word out about this service that they will likely also be doing in the autumn when the school year starts. To be fair, I offer to pay them each $20 to divvy up all the high school math teachers at my school and the nearby middle school, and within the next 2 weeks personally deliver to each of them, my [soon to be completed] single page, tri-fold flyer about my service. They ask for $30 each, along with a hand shake agreement that they will be the first 2 helpers offered positions in the autumn. We agree – they step up, also giving flyers to every counselor, all of the student officers, all of the school’s sports coaches, and the teacher-advisers for every program.

4. Your plan to ask 2 of trusted associates if they might also be helpers, by agreeing to:

5 identify 2 possible locations for doing tutoring, w launch starting end of May

“Since I don’t have any money to spare for rent, and because I’ve been told not to do tutoring in private places for ethical reasons, I intend to tutor in my local library, as well as nearby coffee shop. I received permission from the head librarian to do no more than 2 sessions per day, in the coffee shop area. The coffee shop manager also approved my request, with no limit on days per week, provided I purchase at least 1 small drink for my client each time. “

5 two identified locations for doing your sideline business activities

6 do google search on student-tutoring best practices, including financial data

“These are the initial google searches I intend to pursue:

Q. what are best practices used by high school math tutors?

Q. how to produce best results with math tutoring for high school students?

Q. which common pitfalls in high school math tutoring are to be avoided?

6 which google search questions or topics do you intend to pursue with your Sideline, including financial data?

Q.

Q.

Q.

7 look at free and low cost simple web pages for this service – that I can design in 1 hour

“I intend to go with paying for Word Press, rather than a free web service because it is low cost and easy to install and very versatile for adding plug-ins as I expand my sideline. “

7 which free or fee based web page service do you intend to retain?

8 ask parents to set up joint debit account w Zelle quick-pay, and paypal processing

“I plan to immediately add a debit account to my parents account that will allow me to access both the Zelle quick-pay option, as well as paypal, associated with my gmail account. This will allow parents of my clients to pay for 4-tutoring sessions at a time, and have me notify them after each session.

8 which client pay options do you intend to set up if any?

9 plan on distributing flyers to all the counselors, math teachers, and area boys/girls club

“Although I will use social media to get the word out when school resumes in September, right now I have one month to hand deliver flyers to math teachers, counselors and coaches at my school and nearby middle school – with the help of 2 potential helper classmates that I will pay $30 each, and promise to give first opportunity to tutor for me starting in September.”

9. Your plan for getting the word out during your small-start period, as well as later?

10 ask 3 kids I’ve tutored to write 1 paragraph references/testimonials for me

“I’ve tutored at least 6 math students for free, off-and-on for the past 3 years of school. I’m going to ask all 6 to consider writing a 3 sentence summary of what they found both special and beneficial about my assistance, with specific reference to these qualities: explain complex concepts in easily understood terms; familiarity with how my teacher gives homework and tests; has good follow-up resources; patient; much cheaper than adult tutors; available night before exams.”

10. ask three prior clients to write 1 paragraph references/testimonials for me, emphasizing these qualities: