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If you’re starting a new project, or a new business, in September, you’re in good company.

This is the month that moms and dads, recent grads and others decide to jump into a new endeavor or restart some project shoved aside in the summer months.

They need to balance this with the demands of their day job – and the boss may or may not be supportive of your Etsy shop or your new business. Yet these slash careers or side pursuits can make you “more rounded, develop additional skips, develop additional business relationships” and more, said Donna Schilder, a career coach who has had a string of side businesses, from editing and resume writing to an e-course on creating success through LinkedIn.

So as you ramp up your second income stream or an active volunteer activity, consider these five pointers:

1. Ask permission or ask forgiveness. Read up on your employer’s policies about outside jobs and interests. Find out whether you are expected to notify someone in HR or elsewhere. Then consider your direct supervisor’s views – if she’s laid back and involved in many community activities, she may not sweat your tiny start-up. Then decide whether to fly below the radar for a while, or be completely upfront and tell everyone what you’re working on from the start.

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