Don’t Keep Your Idea A Secret

There are a million reasons why it is important to talk to people about your new business and there are maybe three or four reasons to keep your new project a secret. The biggest reason to keep your mouth shut would have to be paranoia, by a wide margin.

Think of it this way.

Raise your hand if you know of anyone that has had their idea stolen from them directly. So basically, they were networking, told someone their idea and the person they told took the idea, started the company and became successful. Not only that, the success of the thief’s company is  the reason that the original company failed.

Do you know anyone that could tell this story?

On the other hand have you ever met the guy that had an idea but only told a few people? The idea was so brilliant that it would obviously be stolen and all would be lost. Somewhere along the line things went wrong. He never told anyone, never generated any buzz or momentum and the business never launched.

Of course we aren’t talking trade secrets we’re talking business ideas, and ones that aren’t glaringly obvious. If you look at things logically, not talking about your idea is probably the same as not launching.



Filed under startups

8 responses to “Don’t Keep Your Idea A Secret

  1. I could not agree with you more.

    There are several benefits to sharing your idea early:

    1. You can find others that like the idea and might join you in building a company.

    2. If the idea has some challenges (which it certainly will), others can help you identify them early-on.

    3. Simply the act of telling others will force you to think through the idea more fully.


  2. Paul

    Theres another angle to this though. First impressions count, and reviews and usenet posts can last indefinitely. So if you’re not ready yet I don’t think its a good idea to start publicising willy nilly.

  3. I agree, Paul, but I think talking to people helps you get a better idea of how to express the idea. I’m not talking about PR.

    Instead of saying “I’m working on an idea but I can’t talk about it yet” it’s better to just tell the idea.

  4. Reminds me of a quote I try to keep handy: “Don’t worry about people stealing your ideas. If your ideas are any good, you’ll have to ram them down people’s throats.” –Howard Aiken

    Though, now that you mention it, I have a bunch of ideas that I rarely talk about… hmm. I should probably change that.

  5. Pingback: » No One Is Going To Steal Your Idea

  6. Pingback: Hmmm, something to think about… « Threads in my Stash

  7. Pingback: Quora

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