Protect Yourself as an Entrepreneur
February 24, 2021
As an entrepreneur, you need to be careful. If you have lots of good ideas, you need to know how to protect them from people who may want to profit from your own hard work and creativity. Not only that, but you’ll want to protect any investments you make in your business so that you are not left with anything should things not turn out as you expected.
With that in mind, here are some of the most important things you can do to protect your self, your ideas and your money as an entrepreneur and business founder. Do as many of these things as you can and you’re far more likely to not only succeed in your business endeavours but thrive as a business founder too.
Keep things close to your chest
As an entrepreneur, you’re likely to be generating a lot of ideas, and coming up with numerous ways to potentially make your fortune. If this is the case, it’s important that you are very careful about who you do and do not talk to about these ideas because there’s always the chance that someone will swoop in, steal your ideas and set up a new business using them before you are able to get involved. So, although you may need to run ideas by a trusted friend or mentor to see how viable they really area, avoid sharing them with more people than necessary, and certainly don’t mention them to anyone who could conceivably be considered competition.
File a patent
Filing a patent on any new ideas you come up with is a basic necessity if you want to ensure that you have the exclusive right to make money from your ideas, Filing a patent is much simpler and less expensive than you might think, so there really is no reason not to take this step and add an extra layer of protection to yourself as an entrepreneur. Oh, and if you happen to create any piece of work that is filmed, performed or publishes, you may also want to copyright it so that it cannot be used without your permission and so that you can seek a fee from anyone who does want to use it for any reason.
Incorporate your business
When it comes to protecting your finances as an entrepreneur, the first thing you’re going to want to do is to separate your personal finances from your business finances. You can do this by first setting up a separate business bank account so that things don’t become entangled. Then, you should really look at how to start an LLC because having your business set up as a limited liability company will mean that you are not personally liable for most of your business debts. Should your business end up in trouble, this will mean that you have a decent level of personal financial protection that could help to keep you safe from bankruptcy and other legal action in your personal life.
Hire a business attorney
Getting legal advice from a professional attorney who specialises in your niche is something that you should certainly be doing as a serious entrepreneur. They will help you to draw up watertight contracts and put in place various measures that will help to protect you from all manner of litigation, and they will help you to ensure that your business meets all of the local and national rules and regulations that could help to keep you on the right side of the law. If your business is acting illegally, even if you aren’t aware that is the case, you could end up being persecuted, heavily fined or even shut down, so a good business lawyer really is worth their weight in gold.
Invest in excellent IT security
Running a business without the use of computers, servers, websites and other IT equipment is virtually impossible in this day and age, which is why it’s so important that you protect yourself by investing in the best IT security you can afford. All it takes is one hack for your business’ data to be compromised and your reputation to go down the toilet – don’t let that happens nd take your digital security as seriously as possible from the get-go. Yes, it may be an additional expense, but it will save you so much in terms of time, money and reputation that it is so worth it.
Be an expert
Taking the time to really learn your niche and become an expert in the area of business you operate in can protect you. It can help you to build a strong reputation and excellent brand identity for your business. It will set you up as a trusted source in your field, and this will mean that should competitors try to steal from your or do you down, it will be much harder for them to succeed in their aims.
Being highly insured as an entrepreneur is vital if you want to protect yourself and your business. We live in an increasingly litigious society and that means that being sued is always a possibility. If you have insurance in place to protect against accidents, injuries and things like fires and floods, should the worst happen, at the very least you will not end up in serious financial trouble, or even bankrupt, as a result.
As you can see, there are a lot of things to consider and numerous steps to take if you want to protect yourself, and your business, as an entrepreneur. However, you should not let this fact overwhelm you, and you should put the above, and any other measures you can think of, in place as soon as you get your first viable business idea. A failure to do so could result in all kinds of disappointments and setbacks to your business that you may not recover from. Put the hard work in now, and no matter what life as a business founder throws at you, you’ll be prepared.