The Next Best Thing to Cloning Yourself Is Available Now An assistant frees you for what matters most at work and in life.

By Jimi Smoot

entrepreneur daily

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Sam Edwards | Getty Images

Being good at what you do has gotten you where you are today. If you're a truly successful person, you know it's smart to always keep a critical eye open for the next big thing. Much of the time, great opportunity requires you to embrace change.

Hiring an assistant can help you hasten those changes so you can grow rapidly as a professional and as a person. Skilled assistants make you better not only because of the work they do for you but because they force you to hold up a mirror and examine how you can live a happier and more fulfilling life.

Here are a few ways an assistant can help take your company to the next level.

Get more stuff done.

No matter how much you grind it out or how much sleep you lose, you'll never have enough hours in the day to get everything done. Working more than eight hours a day even can be counterproductive.

The biggest advantage of hiring an assistant is the time you gain to focus on your strengths. These are the production drivers, the factors that have the most impact on your bottom line. Concentrating exclusively on the things you do well enables you to multiply your work's impact several times over. To get there, you must outsource the things you do less well.

Multitask the right way.

Highly driven business owners sometimes wish they could be in two places at once. Maybe you've tried to cheat the laws of time and space by working on more than one task at the same time. But this approach doesn't allow you to focus on either project. It's not just you: Research from the University of Michigan shows multitasking greatly decreases a person's ability to accomplish tasks.

You're only one person. An able assistant gives you the ability to work on more than one thing at the same time. This adds to your presence a level of synchronicity that makes it easy for parallel projects to converge at the right time.

Related: Avoid These 8 Productivity Myths

Waste not, want not.

If you're trying to optimize time against a revenue goal, you must carefully weigh every opportunity. Time spent capturing or retaining a high-value client, for example, is more valuable to your bottom line than spending an exorbitant amount of time with a client whose business adds less value to your enterprise.

Weighing opportunity cost is a fundamental part of smart economics. It's especially critical for people who run their own businesses. With an assistant, you can accomplish your primary choice of work, plus pursue an attractive alternative. You reap the benefits of both options, significantly lowering your opportunity cost. While you're doing the groundwork on the high-value client, your assistant can spend time with a client who might prove more high-yield in the future.

Do it today, not tomorrow.

From time to time, everyone falls victim to the Instant Gratification Monkey. Researchers now estimate procrastination has quadrupled over the past 30 years. Even if you aren't among the 26 percent of people who identify as chronic procrastinators, you've probably had your own experiences with regular mild procrastination and occasional debilitating procrastination.

Handing off tasks that drain your mental energy does more than free up time to accomplish what's needed in the moment. It redirects your mental energy toward projects that engage you, making you more naturally inclined to stay motivated in your work.

Related: 7 Questions That Cure Terminal Procrastination

Look and act like a boss.

You get only seven seconds to make a first impression. Even if you make a good one, you must work hard to maintain a person's opinion of you. That's true whether the individual is a client, colleague, partner or employee. It takes a lot of organization to stay polished and on point.

When you're building relationships to take your business or career to the next level, image is everything.

Make more time for the things that count.

Your professional success is important for your personal happiness. But it's not the only thing that matters.

High achievers have a tendency to lose track of equally important things outside the world of work. Their laser focus leads to an unsustainable pace of life that easily can cause burnout. Delegating work to an assistant not only increases your productivity, it empowers you to actively experience life beyond your work day. Family, friends, entertainment, hobbies, vacation, health and personal betterment all deserve your time, too – and you deserve to enjoy them.

Related: How Hiring an Assistant Has Made Me Happier

Jimi Smoot

Managing Partner, Octavius Labs

Jimi Smoot is the founder and managing partner of octavius labs, an LA-based incubator that builds and launches marketing and productivity software-as-a-service products.

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