Aaron Harvey isn't like most bosses. The executive creative director and founding partner of Ready Set Rocket, a digital marketing agency in New York, lets employees have side projects.
In fact, he encourages them.
The company has been ranked along side Squarespace and AOL as a top place to work, and Harvey's leadership style probably has something to do with it.
"If at the end of the day you're trying to cultivate leaders who are going to make change in your company," Harvey tells CNBC, "it's really important that you encourage them to find that inspiration, which in reality is going to come both inside and outside of the office."
Harvey, who is 35 years-old, is fine with his employees having a side hustle, so long as there's open conversation about it and it doesn't interfere with work.
"People need to explore the ideas in their head," he says. "Otherwise it's going to be a stifling environment."
The company offers employees a dollar-for-dollar matching program to take classes related to learning a new skill. Harvey says he also gives employees the option of some schedule flexibility to learn those skills or launch a side project.
One of the company's copywriters learned how to be a user experience designer, which helps the company when it comes to digital storytelling. A graphic designer took a long photography class and is now able to assist on client photo shoots.