Good Side Jobs for Introverts

Terri Carr

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Entry Level Jobs for Introverts

Entry level jobs can be a great way to pick up some extra cash. However, many entry level positions in restaurants, cafes, grocery stores and other retail outlets require frequent interaction with the general public.

If you’re already employed full time or have other responsibilities, a side job dealing with the public may seem exhausting, especially if you’re an introvert.

As someone with strong introvert tendencies myself, I’ve noticed I usually prefer to work quietly by myself at least some of the time.

Yet, over the years, I’ve had a number of side jobs that were more suited to an extroverted personality.

Why was I torturing myself with these ill-fitting jobs? Mostly because I assumed the only jobs available to a non-degreed person were retail service positions like the ones you see posted on storefront windows around town. It didn’t really occur to me that I could deliberately look for jobs that didn’t involve constant interaction with the public.

However, I’ve since realized there are plenty of options suitable for introverts, even at the entry level. These openings aren’t as visible as the barista, server and cashier positions so you won’t often see them on a ‘Help Wanted’ sign in your neighborhood.

Coincidentally, many introvert-friendly jobs often come with starting wages a bit higher than other entry level jobs.

Next time you need some quick extra cash, consider one of these introvert-friendly side gigs.

Pet sitter - when I lived in a warm climate, I made a nice side income ($500 -$1000/month) taking care of other peoples’ dogs, cats, turtles, birds, fish and once, frogs. Drop in pet sitting visits can easily fetch $15 for half an hour of your time and overnight pet care ranges from $40 to $90.

When I started, I had never owned a single pet. I advertised my services with a simple flyer at a few local businesses and used word of mouth and shared my business card at the restaurant where I worked at the time. After a couple of months, I had a solid clientele and I was earning several hundred dollars a month walking and feeding adorable dogs. The majority of pet sitting clients were for dogs since they require a bit more attention than many other species. Cat sitters are in demand too, but cats need fewer visits and most don’t need walking.

Kennel help - If going into other peoples’ homes doesn’t appeal to you but you still like animals, check with your local kennels, doggie daycares and veterinarians to see if they need someone to stop in evenings and weekends to provide fill in care. These positions often pay $10 an hour or more.

Baker - One of my all time favorite television commercials was an ad for Dunkin Donuts. You’d see close up after close up of the donut man getting ready to leave for work at 4 am. Through half-closed, bleary eyes, he’d moan, “Time to make the donuts.” and ready himself for another day. The message was that Mr. Donut Man was laboring away in solitude while the rest of us are sleeping.

If you don’t want to deal with incessant mundane questions from customers and you’re a morning person, this could be the gig for you.

Many bakeries offer on the job training and average hourly rate is better than many retail food service positions at $13.32/hour.

Other side gigs ideal for introverts:

Librarian aide - shelving books not staffing the checkout desk. You might still encounter some patron questions, but it shouldn’t be relentless stream.

Real estate research / administrative duties - many realtors need help compiling listings of available properties, preparing for and staffing open houses and other duties

Transcription - no special equipment needed besides a laptop and an inexpensive subscription to transcription software. These programs work with or without an internet connection and it makes transcription infinitely easier.

Cleaning / janitorial - homes, offices, hotel rooms

  • Landscaper
  • Painter
  • Writer
  • Bookkeeper - a little training is required for this one but many free or inexpensive videos online will get you started. Also bookkeeping software often comes with tutorials included.

These jobs may or may not suit you long term, they usually allow you to work quietly by yourself. And many of them can lead to greater opportunities too!

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