How do entrepreneurs protect business ideas? So, you finally came up with a great business idea after a lot of thinking and brainstorming? I understand that feeling and it is great. But before you start executing the idea, have you ever thought of the possibility of your business idea being stolen?
Simple Ways You Can Protect Your Idea From Theft
Imagine if your idea was stolen after all the effort you put into figuring it out. I am not trying to scare you off or discourage you from executing your new found business idea. I am just trying to make you see why it is important for you to protect your business ideas.
I am not going to leave you all alone with another daunting task of figuring out the ways you can protect your business ideas. I have already helped you out with that. All you have to do is to read and pick my brain on the various ways of protecting your business ideas.
The thing is that you cannot execute your business idea all by yourself. You need people to help and support you. You need teams to work with and you might also need investors to invest in your business. And there is no way these people are going to work with you unless they know what exactly you are doing.
So, sharing your business ideas with people is inevitable. You can however apply wisdom when you are doing this. Make sure you research about the people you want to share your ideas with. Don’t assume you know them.
Find out the people they have worked with in the past and try as much as possible to investigate about their personality and character most especially in term of integrity. You make use of the internet and the social media in carrying out your investigations. Doing this will help a great deal.
Be Discrete with your Business ideas
While it is inevitable to share your business ideas with people, you can do it in a discrete way. You don’t have to tell them everything. Just tell them the basic things they need to know. The thing is that your business idea is not exclusive to you alone. You are not the only one who has come up with such idea. There are many others that have ideas that are similar to yours.
However, no matter how one business idea is similar to another, there is always something that is unique about it. It is called the Unique Selling Proposition (USP). It is that thing that will differentiate your business idea from other similar ones that are being executed.
Your duty is to try as much as possible to protect that very thing that makes your business idea unique and different from that of others by being discrete about it. So that peradventure somebody steals your business idea, you can still go on with its execution without being affected.
Take Legal Actions
You can also take legal actions in protecting your business ideas. There are various legal actions you can consider. And some of such legal actions are discussed below:
When you share your business idea with other people, you can protect it by asking them to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement which will make them keep your business idea confidential.
Obtaining a patent is another way of protecting business idea. However, before you can patent your business ideas it must meet some requirements. Also, obtaining patent is time and money intensive, but if you think your business idea is worth it, you can go for it.
The Trade Marks Acts, 1996 defines a trademark as ‘any sign capable of being represented graphically which is capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one undertaking from another undertaking.’ Anything that gives identity to your business in the market place can be trademarked.
Copyright is used in protecting creative works such as literary works, website contents, movies, songs, novels, poetry, computer software and applications. So if you have any business idea along this line, you should consider doing its copyright.
You will need to employ the service of a lawyer before protecting your business through any of these legal actions. This is important because the lawyer will guide you in knowing the kind of legal action that is apt for your business idea and how best to go about it. However, taking legal actions is not enough because it does not automatically protect your business idea from theft.
What if someone stole your business idea after you’ve taken legal action and you are not aware of it? So don’t become complacent because you have taken the necessary legal actions. You must be at alert and be on a look out for new businesses to see if they have copied your business ideas in any way.
Doing this will enable you to promptly take legal actions before the theft has any adverse effect on your business.
I am sure this article has enlightened you about the various ways you can protect your business ideas.
If what has been holding you back from executing the business idea you have generated is the fear of it not being stolen, you got no reason to fear again. So, no more procrastination, step out fearlessly and start executing your ideas.