Customer Spotlight

How Theodo’s CTO Saves Time For Creative Thinking By Delegating To An Assistant

Customer Since 2019
Co-Founder & CTO of Theodo Group
IT & Development Consulting
700 employees
~10 hours per month
Fabrice Bernhard

Even the most dedicated CTOs and tech leaders may find the creeping scope of everyday tasks a significant challenge to overcome.

We had a candid conversation with Double Customer Fabrice Bernhard –– the CTO & Co-Founder of Theodo Group –– to find out how delegating to an assistant helped him boost his productivity and refocus his energy on company growth.

A Juggling Act of Tech Leadership and Daily Tasks

Juggling vision, strategy, and leadership duties became more challenging as Theodo grew from a startup in 2009 to a global business that employs 700 people. He was finding himself spending more time on daily administrative tasks and context switching and less time doing what he loved: pushing his business forward through deep thinking around new uses for technology.

"I love technology and how it can be used to make the world more ingenious and reduce waste. I particularly enjoy understanding innovative ways to use new technologies and translating that knowledge to non-tech individuals, showing them how it can change their lives."

The Tech-Driven Time Drain

Fabrice had an epiphany when he heard someone comment on how more reliance on technology did not necessarily equal higher productivity.

I was inspired by someone who told me research showed that technology hadn't brought productivity gains in the last 50 years. The idea is that engineers used to spend 80% of their time on value-added tasks when they had assistants. With digitalization, tasks previously delegated to assistants are now done directly, offsetting the perceived time savings. Given my level of responsibility, I need to ensure my work time is focused on high-value tasks, and having an assistant helps achieve that.

To keep his focus on the most impactful work, Fabrice needed to bring on an assistant. So, in 2019, he began working with Double.

Delegating the Routine and the Unexpected

As soon as Fabrice started working with his executive assistant, his eyes were opened to how much personal and professional tasks were draining his attention. One of the big things he needed his assistant Agathe to take on right away was booking travel:

"Agathe helps with travel reservations, and the quality is significantly better than if I would do it myself. She thinks about adding it to the calendar, and she handles the issues that go with changing trains frequently. That’s something we don’t necessarily think about. We think, ‘Oh, it would take me only two minutes to book a train,’ and it’s true. But if I have to change it, and I often do, it will take me longer because I need to exchange the ticket, change it in my calendar, reschedule the meetings around the train times, etc."

Beyond travel logistics, Agathe supports Fabrice by taking on plenty of work and personal tasks, including:

  • Inbox Management
  • Document Drafting & Editing
  • Event Research & Planning
  • Meeting Prep
  • Organization & Filing
  • Data Collection
  • Expenses
  • Research

Throughout our conversation, one thing Fabrice emphasized was the balance of building a routine with his assistant and trusting her to handle unexpected details that spring up around it:

The idea of delegating isn’t to think about when everything will go perfectly but more when there is a problem. Then, you can clearly see the value of delegating this task that looked so easy. In fact, it’s not. There are a lot of tiny details around it that take less time for Agathe to do it than if I were to try to do it myself.

By delegating to Agathe, Fabrice can progress tasks alongside his primary leadership duties instead of waiting for a later time slot to get them done.

Life With Double

As a customer for five years, Fabrice realizes the positive impact delegating has had. He’s established deep-seated routines with Agathe that he depends on every day. Even when she goes on vacation, Double provides a substitute assistant to keep things running:

You can delegate to Double’s remote assistants with service quality comparable to a direct hire. It ensures service continuity during vacations or replacements. Additionally, Double provides a dedicated communication channel with the Double app and task tracking dashboard, which I really enjoy.

Now, his workdays are structured and predictable, with time set aside for creative work.

"A typical day would start with some exercise, followed by a business breakfast. I try to reserve the morning for creative work, writing, and project-related tasks. Lunch is typically a business meeting, and the afternoon is filled with internal meetings, often involving weekly check-ins or managing systems."

We ended our conversation by asking Fabrice about his advice for CTOs who want to attain work-life balance: “My advice is to stop searching for it. The concept of work-life balance implies that professional life is a constraint. Instead, focus on finding professional fulfillment that aligns with personal commitments. Whether it's personal or professional life, the real challenge is to focus on moments of added value. Double can be helpful in this regard.”

About Theodo

Theodo uses Agile, devops, and Lean to build transformational tech products for clients all over the world, including global companies—such as VF Corporation, Raytheon Technologies, SMBC, Biogen, Colas, Tarkett, Dior, Safran, BNP Paribas, Allianz, and SG—and leading tech scale-ups—such as ContentSquare, ManoMano, and Qonto. Founded in 2009, the company now makes 90M euros in revenue and has grown to 700 employees, with offices based in Paris, London, Casablanca, and New York.

Ready to save time?

Start working with a Double assistant today.

Get started