The 7 Secrets of The Gig Gurus Toolkit

Experts explain how to make the gig economy work for you.

Gig work is not something that is going to go away and more people should explore the possibilities it can offer and how to maximize its benefits.”
— Daryl A. Williams

ATLANTA, GA, USA, September 13, 2022 / — What do you do when you need more money than your paycheck delivers? Charles A. West and Daryl A. Williams, co-developers of the Urban Entrepreneurship Program (UEP), a nationally recognized entrepreneur training initiative supported by the Ewing Kauffman Foundation, believe the gig economy is an option for you. In their eyes, the pandemic and Great Resignation both underscore the value of having a gig.

Their new book, “The 7 Secrets of the Gig Gurus: A Toolkit for the Freelance Gig Economy,” offers paths you can take to become a successful gig worker. In the toolkit you will find examples highlighting people just like you – whether a starter (someone new to work), full-time employee, dreamer, entrepreneur, returning citizen (those formerly incarcerated), physically challenged or retiree – as well as instructions about how to find gigs.

West knows firsthand the strength and benefits of gig work. “I saved the money to make a down payment on my first home in Mt. Vernon, N.Y. by working gigs in addition to my full-time job as a manager,” he said. The experience opened his mind and allowed him to see how gigs can be crafted to fit a variety of people. It also reminded him of the words of a former Accounting professor: “get yourself a little cash business on the side.”

“That’s why we describe the information we are sharing in this ToolKit as ‘secrets,’” said Williams, the book’s co-author. “Dr. West and I employed some of these methods when we helped create the Kauffman Foundation’s successful entrepreneurship training program for people who were trying to get back on their feet in Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. We also used them in Detroit thru the UEP Detroit 150 to help suppliers affected by auto manufacturers’ bankruptcies.”

The authors insist it is a mistake to lump all gigs into the category of unskilled, low-paying jobs. Accountants, nurses, programmers, various types of engineers, teachers and graphic artists fit the gig worker category as much as ride-share drivers and musicians are. What makes having a gig now different from years past are the range of opportunities and technology. But it takes a systematic approach to access gigs that specifically achieve the financial goals you want to reach. That’s a problem this ToolKit solves.

“Gig work is not something that is going to go away and more people should explore the possibilities it can offer and how to maximize its benefits,” Williams said.

The co-authors said they have one piece of advice for everyone joining the gig economy: “Approach any gig as if you are an entrepreneur – because you are.”

For interviews with co-authors Charles West and Daryl Williams, or to review copies of The 7 Secrets of the Gig Gurus: A ToolKit for the Freelance Gig Economy contact:
J. Friend West | | 770-593-8796

Charles West has a doctorate in entrepreneurship from Union Institute & University. He also holds an MBA in finance from Atlanta University and a bachelor’s in accounting from Morehouse College. He has served as an economic development consultant to federal and state agencies as well as non-profit and for-profit organizations. He has also written “Black Enterprise Inc.: Case Studies of A New Experiment”, “How to Understand and Secure a Surety Construction Bond,” and “Tonight You can Be in Business for Yourself.” He led First Harlem Management Corp. in New York, and co-led NDI Inc. in Atlanta. And he remains a gig worker.

Daryl Williams is a senior consultant in entrepreneurship and economic development. He has served as Chief Executive Officer and co-developer of the Urban Entrepreneur Partnership (UEP), a nationally recognized entrepreneurial coaching program founded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. At the Kauffman Foundation he was Director of Research, Policy and Entrepreneurship. Also, he spent more than 13 years in the music industry as a performer, producer, studio owner, and founder of an independent record label. He earned a B.A. and M.A. in sociology from the University of Kansas.

J. Friend West
The Freelance Gig Gurus
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