Years ago, I've had a really good idea, together with some necessary legal and practical considerations, all of which didn't constitute a real obstacle, nor do they constitute today: you've got just to be smart in the execution of the scheme I advocate.
The legal side is quite simple, you don't have the right to have third parties have some knowledge about your firm's details (so they'd have the "right" to flip you, but would they do it, after all? I doubt this, and no harm will be done anyway, except if you try to get some work for really cheap, from somebody without a brilliant future on his own - just don't go for desperate people with lots of time, easy is dangerous), so you must select your contractors with care, but then, it's not a crime to delegate just work to people you pay for this, contrary to academic work you are supposed to have concocted all alone - whilst we all know that most rich people's children have their academic work written by ghost writers paid by their parents, to begin with their homework in the very first year (since you cannot spend 3 months on legal homework and cruise the Mediterranean on the family yacht at the same, everybody will understand this), and up to their doctoral "dissertation". So...
Today, Der Spiegel publishes a variant of my original idea, so I think I better present both, together with publishing mine for the first time, in order also to retain some moral rights on the latter.
In this link, http://www.spiegel.d...edigen-a-877990.html
they tell you a high-paid (big six figures) programmer / IT executive in a U.S. corp didn't do anything on his pc, within the corp, except surfing the web all day long, especially looking at cat videos! (Can I blame him? Not really.)
At the same time, some Chinese regularly accessed the highly-secured computer network of this corp and did do all sorts of things, nothing harmful though, and getting access with a special ID chip card, via a reader, having been issued to the cat video viewer.
So eventually, an external IT security service provider dug these facts: The employee in question (then fired) had privately outsorced all his work to a Chinese IT service corporation, and they did all his work for him, from China; he paid them high in the 5-digits, so this scheme was financially highly profitable for the man in question who was considered the very best IT man within this corporation (I don't know if this was so even before, when he did his own work yet, or if this favorable appreciation of him was the direct result of his contractors doing so well their work).
Now, the question is, why - especially if he was so good at it even by his own means - this man so entirely avoided to do any of his work, i.e. why he was obviously unable to win the slightest satisfaction out of it.
Years ago, I had not at all that very same idea, since my idea was, why wouldn't a young executive (or a programmer, as we have got here, but at the time, I had executives or young lawyers in mind) not outsource parts of his work, in order to be considered a very promising young executive. I didn't think about China, but in a very conservative way, I thought of brilliant students he'd hire, in law or business administration - the same should be possible in the sciences, etc. - , and who would work for him, executing parts of the tasks he himself had been assigned. I mused, he perhaps would be paid 10k a month, 6.5k net, and why not, instead of wasting his money on travel, furniture, cars, giving 1.5k each, net, to 2 young students working for him on week-ends, etc.
This way, our young executive would be able, not to see cat videos instead, but to deliver almost 2 times what he was expected to work on, in his office, and I thought that such an investment on his part could be extremely beneficial for his career. I thought myself, there are employees with higher IQ, and who work much faster than their collegues, so they will "make it". Ok, there's also, and very importantly, that "way with people", called "emotional intelligence / EQ" today, and with this career aspect, some "private collaborators" will not help, but I also thought, with equal EQ, with equal IQ, and with equal work measured by time (let's say 40, 45, 50, 55 hours a week), PLUS two student collaborators, our young executive should be able to have very quickly a career that paid back tenfold for those 3,000 bucks he spent on his monthly income, for the very first years of his career.
I was aware that this couldn't work but if his superiors thought it was him who did this exceptional work load (and with correct results, of course); I was aware that the "alternative" to "work more", individually, wouldn't work out, since smarter people than he was, could - and would - work longer hours, too, and thus assure the lead they had on him grew even bigger: secret delegation, AND hard work, seemed to be a viable solution, though, especially since there certainly would be some intimidation effect on his peers, and even on collegues smarter than him, erroneously assuming that it was him the superior intelligence.
I was also aware of the risks of such a scheme: First, our man should be smart enough in order to not appear really stupid in the office or law office; it should be ok that his peers and his superiors are astonished by what he's capable of, but they shouldn't be outright incredulous at what he delivers, for too much inconsistency with what he's orally capable of.
Then, if our man delegated work to inferior students who for themselves didn't make it, there was a risk of extortion: "Give me more share, or your superiors will know who did the work." On the other hand, brilliant students would never do this, since their own career would be put at risk by such a move. Of course, brilliant students don't have so much time, hence my idea to not rely on just one such student, but to take two (or even three - it depends on your risk perception: with 6,500 net each month, you could finance 4 such students and live yourself on 500 bucks a month, with your own income exploding, after two years, to 500,000 bucks a year; a very risk-averse person would just have one such student, and still have 5,000 bucks a month for his expenditures, but would rise his income by perhaps just 20 or 25 p.c. (but then could get a second private contractor)).
I also was aware that our man should delegate with caution, and should do the really difficult parts himself, without, on the other hand, relegating his private staff to menial tasks only - and he should control this work, perhaps with some cross-control also, student 1 checking tasks executed by student 2, and vice versa.
Also, I thought by myself that all this should be organized in a very private way, our man getting work out of the office in order to "work on it at home", then passing parts of it to his contractors, i.e. I was aware of him not being well advised to have any phone or mail conversation with them in the office or by his office pc; about giving them access to the corporate network, I didn't even consider such outrage. And, of course, in order to prevail such discretion, I was aware our man would have to collect the necessary data himself, within the office, if data wasn't available but there, e.g. (this situation is much better now for students in the university itself, so today they can search for this data there) specialised / too expensive db's, available in the office / corporation, but not in the university (as said, today it's probably the other way round, the students having access to data himself will not have access to (which in some cases might even bring up the problem: "But this is brilliant! Where did you find it?")
In countries where there is a tax secret, you could try to deduct your expenses from your own income, the interest here laying in your collaborators' fewer tax rate. On the other hand, this will complicate things for them (their parents deducting them from their income, social security, your paying them more because of their tax / social security expenses), so that sometimes, it could be preferable to just pay them net, and all the worse with your higher tax rate (I know in some countries, this will then create the legal problem of "illegal employment" or such, but after all, you don't really employ them): See your tax advisor in case, but in countries like Sweden, e.g., your superiors could ask you, why do you declare an income of just 2,000 bucks, we paying you 6,000 net?!" So my advice is, beware of unnecessary complications, don't be too stingy-smart-alecky here; the same applies to your treating your subcontractors.
So this is my idea from some years ago, and I think it holds steady. The core element here is, don't tell your superiors you have contractors: It's not your investment of 5,000 bucks out of the 6,500 you get from the corporation that will make them promote you in an exceptional way, but only their misconception that you're incredibly gifted will make your fortune.
Later on, they will assign you so many collaborators in-house that nobody will ever discover the little secret of your early years if you continue to delegate in a smart way.