Revealing a Great Idea too Early

Whether it’s a new invention or a great business plan, sharing a great idea with others is a great way to get feedback giving you a fresh prospective and to help you to improve your great idea even further.  There are many events that have been popping up recently to help those who have ideas and would like to share it with others in order to get some type of validation. The first time I attended one of these events was back in November 2012 called Shenzhen Startup Weekend.  I had 60 seconds to pitch my idea while I stood in front of a group of about 200+ people.  Everyone then chose which idea they’d like to work on over the weekend.  The event ended with a five minute presentation and three minutes of Q & A with each team.  The top three teams won prizes.  I didn’t end up in the top three but I’ve learned a lot more about my idea.

I would think about my great idea off and on for about five years but finally shared it during this event.  After sharing it, I was nervous others would take it and use it for themselves.  I was even paranoid when some people in attendance, who looked like businessmen, would approach me just to hear the details of the idea then leave.

I know, you must be asking yourself, “What’s the great idea!!!” I already revealed it to those 200+ people so what’s the big deal?  I’ll definitely share the details here on CSIC after I get some kind of IP protection.

During and after the event mentors suggested that I rush to get some kind of IP protection but when I did, I wasn’t sure exactly how to describe it when filling out the patent form.  What happens if I missed a few details? Someone else can make another patent and make mine obsolete?  So I decided to ask one of my mentors about the next best step to take which was contacting a product design company to develop the product.   I am currently in the middle of that process which is helping me really understand the product in great detail that will bring my idea to reality.

Do you think it really matters if you share your best ideas with others?  What would you do if they stole your great idea, or even made it public by sharing it on Facebook?

Shaher Husein joined CSIC/ PassageMaker as a content manager/ import-export trainee in 2012 to fully immerse himself in China and international trade.  He has a Bachelors in Business, Management and Finance from Brooklyn College.  Shaher speaks English and Arabic and is based in Shenzhen.


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