If you’ve ever seen the second Matrix movie, there’s a scene nicknamed the “Burly Brawl” where Agent Smith (the main bad guy) finds a way to clone himself to fight against Neo (main good guy).

Then, he clones himself again. And again. And again, until there are literally dozens, if not hundreds of “him” kicking, punching Keanu Reeves until he eventually has to fly away to escape.

Agent Smith demonstrating the concept of leverage.

Behold, the concept of leverage. It’s the ability to use or do something to reduce effort, time, money or any of your assets (yes, effort and time are assets) in order to get the same or even greater return, allowing you to scale your business bigger than you would have been able to if you were doing everything yourself.

A lot of experts call this “cloning yourself”. If you’re doing 10 things every week for your side hustle, and those 10 things each take up 5 hours a week, it makes sense to be able to offload one or more of those things in order to do the things that might get you more money.

For example, if you’re spending 5 hours updating your website and 5 hours marketing yourself to get new clients, which one of those things is likely to bring in more money? Yep — marketing yourself to bring in more clients. So, where can you find someone to update your website to bring in new clients so that you can reallocate those 5 hours toward marketing, thus spending 10 hours on marketing and 0 hours on your website?

Of course, this activities has to inherently pay for itself; you can’t hire a web designer for $500/hour when your marketing will only bring in clients that pay $50/hour (although there’s an argument for this as well, but let’s keep things simple).

What Things Should I Pay Someone Else To Do For Me?

That depends on your business. But, here are some general guidelines to get you going.

  1. First, look at where you’re spending your time. Open a document and make a list of how many hours you’re putting towards marketing, travel, administrative activities, accounting, etc. Take inventory of how you spend every hour.
  2. Next, evaluate which of these activities brings in more business, or things you simply hate doing.
  3. Then, think about how you could offload some of these activities to someone else at a reasonable rate. There’s an art to this, but you’ll figure it out.

Where Can I Find People To Outsource To?

A good place to start are outsourcing platforms, like Upwork and Freelancer. You can also check out Fiverr.

But before you do any of that, consider where you are in your process. If you’re just getting started in your Side Hustle and don’t have much to spend, it may not be time to spend your seed money on outsourcing. Those hours can add up REALLY fast, so keep that in mind.

What Should I Spend On Outsourcing?

In my voiceover business, my editor is in the Philippines and he charges $9/hour. I ping him when I need something done, and he’s lightning fast and seemingly ALWAYS available. I also have a backup editor in Greece.

I have a video editor in eastern Europe who charges $8/hour.

And I have a few admin people around the world who get various things done when I need them. They charge anywhere from $2.50 to $6.00 an hour.

However, I rarely spend money on an outsourcer when I’m not already making more than enough to cover their costs on that particular project.

Also, I rarely ask for a lower rate than what they’re bidding. I don’t know their particular situation, so if they’re proposing a particular number, I assume that’s what they need in order to live reasonably well. I’m also liberal with bonuses when someone does a good job or gets work in ahead of schedule.

In the end, outsourcing can help you scale your Side Hustle to the next level, and ultimately “clone” yourself almost endlessly. However, it’s an art and a science, and should be done when it’s the right time for your own business. Don’t rush it, but always be looking for opportunities to make it happen.