When I started out in business my passion about my purpose and ideas drove me to share those ideas with every Tom, Dick and Harry. And then Jane, Susan and Mary. Then I had the terrible experience of people who stole my identity and tried their level best to make money off my idea. Though they failed miserably, probably because the passion for the idea was mine, I sued them and they are now paying me damages for cheating and stealing my identity. The experience was unpleasant but protecting your ideas and identity is a battle that an entrepreneur must learn to fight.
I was inpsired by two fictional cahracters to develop the stealth and the agility to handle that battle. First, the fictional character of the noble savage, Tarzan, was known for his reflexes, agility and heightened senses. Those are just the reflexes you need to have as an entrepreneur. On the other hand, 007 with his dapper suits, sophisticated entrances, and stealth in handling the enemy are equally important for your success.
James Bond works alone. You never see him team up, until he comes back to headquaters to report what he has ALREADY achieved. Until you have worked on every detail of your idea, keep it to yourself. Avoid running to lots of people to give you feedback or advice.
One of the things we love to watch in a James Bond movie is all those gadets! There are pratcial matters that you need to have in order as well– seek legal advice, protect the name and activity that you wish to pursue. Never seek money for registering your name, trade-mark or brand name. Use your own money. The process is very simple and you must keep it discreet until you are legally registered. When you do go out with the name of your business, you will be covered.
The reality is that you cannot always be James Bond out there on your own. You will need help. This is where you can adopt the extra sensory perception of Tarzan. Once you have developed your idea then zero in on people you can trust. With hundreds of networking events asking you to pitch ideas and plenty of people wanting to fund new ideas in the hope of making money there are opportunities out there for you to launch your idea. I recommend that you find mentors rather than investors — let some seniors guide you before you jump in to raise money. Look for someone who can help you shape your idea for launch, and share your ideas only with your mentor.
Ideas can be stolen, there is no copyright on ideas; they are not protected under the law, but you can protect your ideas. I truly hope that you never have to go through the situations that I went through—but as you can see when you puruse your passions with integrity, the ‘pinchers’ will be revealed. Take the proper steps to safeguard your ideas and then you will have wonderful experiences just as I have had with the success of my ideas.