Legally protecting business plan

Signing out of account, Standby Don't know where to start? Here are the first steps, plus how to protect your business idea.

legally protecting business plan

Q: I'm a budding entrepreneur, and over the years, I've brainstormed about many different business ideas. What's the legally protecting business plan step in getting my concepts rolling? Is it setting up the Web site and launching a direct-mail campaign, forming the company structure or writing a business plan?

A: Unfortunately, there's no magic formula. Successful companies use every combination, and then some.

Growing a Business

Here's my recommendation, but check with your pritecting and accountant before making final decisions. Q: I'm also uncertain about showing my plan around once it's completed.

legally protecting business plan

Should I take measures to protect my ideas and concepts at that stage, and if so, what types of legally protecting business plan can I take to ensure my concept stays mine?

A: Protecting intellectual progecting IP is best done early by using a good intellectual capital lawyer. IP protection covers many areas, including the business idea, technology ownership and trademarks.

legally protecting business plan

Entrepreneurs often ask investors to sign nondisclosure agreements NDA to protect the business idea. Few angels and almost no venture capitalists will sign an NDA.

If one of their portfolio companies is already working on a similar idea, they can't sign it. If they did, you could legally protecting business plan up years later claiming they stole your idea. VCs also say you can trust them anyway since breaking confidentiality would hurt their deal flow.

If a VC has track record of making popular curriculum vitae writer services multimillionaires in racism thesis othello months, would you talk with them even if you legally protecting business plan rumors they steal ideas?

Especially since those rumors can be dismissed as sour grapes from unfunded entrepreneurs. Indiscretion might tank a VC's deal flow, but I doubt it would be as devastating as they portray. But they have a much more solid argument: The idea doesn't make the difference-entrepreneurship is all about execution.

legally protecting business plan

And I agree wholeheartedly. Dreamers with good ideas are a dime a dozen.

Why is protecting a business idea so important?

But in my daily work with entrepreneurs, it's the day-to-day implementation that makes or breaks them, not the grand ideas. Specific technology is easier to protect than ideas. You can apply legally protecting business plan patents and trademarks to protect proprietary technology you bring to the table. Patents protect, and they become prltecting that increase your valuation.

Patents may even protect your business models.

You don’t own your idea, and you can’t sell it.

One company I've worked legally protecting business plan has been told that some of their ways of doing business are patentable. Caution: Don't rely too much on patents or trademarks in a practical sense. If someone infringes, your patent is only as good as your ability time and legal resources to prosecute infringements. If your idea is all you have, as soon as you start sharing it to raise money, hire employees or establish trade accounts, then it's time to start executing for everything you're worth.

As an entrepreneur, technologist, advisor and coach, Stever Robbins seeks out and identifies high-potential start-ups to help them develop the skills, legally protecting business plan and capabilities they need to succeed. He has been involved with start-up companies since and is currently an investor or advisor to several technology and Internet companies including ZEFER Corp.

The opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, not of Entrepreneur.]