You have an idea for a new business, project or product. You are so worried about someone stealing your idea that you don’t tell anyone.
The good news is you don’t have to worry about someone stealing your idea. The bad news is it will be difficult to know if others believe it’s a good idea, or to get others input or to find others to partner with.
If you are doing some type of a major medical or drug research it’s one thing but most peoples ideas are things that will benefit from sharing, with the right people.
As an example, I met last week with a business partner of mine down in Georgia about a project we are doing together and, at the end of the meeting, she asked me if she could run an idea for another project past me. I agreed and she told me her idea for a way to educate people in a very specific industry. The thing is, what she didn’t know, I know a good number of people in that industry. With her permission I spoke with a couple of people in that industry and they agreed that this would be something they thought would do very well. Is it possible I could have taken her idea and done it without her? I guess so. Is it possible one of the people who I spoke with could take this idea and do it without her or me? I guess so. Am I concerned this is going to happen? Absolutely not. The key is to talk with people you trust but do be willing to share ideas.
Could I have asked each of these people to sign a Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA) before discussing the idea with them? I could have but since the idea is not patentable (which does change things in terms of importance of an NDA to keep it eligible for a patent) I prefer to simply speak with people I trust. If I felt I needed any of these people to sign an NDA, I wouldn’t be talking to them in the first place.
My business partners willingness to share this idea with me and my willingness to share the idea with a select few has allowed us to realize it’s a project worth pursuing and also to know there are a couple of people out there who might be interested in contributing to this project.
The alternative was for her to say nothing and most likely, never do anything with the idea
Just something to think about.
Have a great day!