How to Protect Your Ideas

Suppose you have a great idea with your consulting that you would like to patent. Well, patenting is excessively time-consuming and complicated, so how should you approach that? In a post at the Institute of Management Consultants, Mark Haas makes a couple recommendations. One—you can have clients sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), so that you can use your brilliant idea without having to worry about people getting loose-lipped about the nature of its brilliance. Or two—you can get a Provisional Patent Application (PPA). This is a cheap, low-risk approach that allows you to say the idea is “patent pending,” and it gives you a full year to get started on filing for a full patent application. Still, when it comes to patents, you will almost definitely want to bring a lawyer into things eventually.

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