The NDA I will never sign.
Let’s start that way. I have met more Startup founders in the last 5 years than most of us. I want to help them grow their business and also create value to a vision that they carry for so much time.
Every conversation starts the same way, before they even greet you, they ask you to sign an NDA, a piece of paper that is as strong as the money they are ready to invest to enforce it. Let’s face it, an NDA is nothing more than 3 paragraphs and a signature.
Why sign it, mostly because you want to bill them for your work, you want to know how you can make them valuable and help them grow.
Many startup founders believe they have an idea that will change the world, that their IP is worth millions and that maybe, maybe they are the next Unicorn. But let’s be honest with each other, nothing is that revolutionary.
I tend to have an infinite respect to the founders that don’t ask to sign an NDA. If your idea is worth something, if you are at the point where you expose that vision to the world, you should also be in a position where no one can touch you or recreate that idea without your knowledge and your expertise.
I pitch a concept for a consultant-enterprise platform that for me make the most sense in a world where resources are limitless and borders less and less present. I believe in an idea that can lead to success, to grow and millions. I pitch it to so many people in the last 4 weeks that I would have destroyed a whole forest in NDA and would have needed to rent a building to pile them for a hypothetical use in the future.
Why I didn’t have one signed? Because I believe that a good idea is as strong as the person carrying it, and without that person it’s just another idea. So why have the papers signed? For a false sense of safety.
If someone turns around and decide to build your idea, let that happen, at a certain point you will have to have your idea in the open and you can’t ask anyone to sign, so let’s show confidence in you and your idea by showing it, explaining it and make investors, resources and friends dream about it without being tight to a piece of paper.
What if tomorrow a friend or investors go around and talk about your idea, well you just created a viral spiral that will make people curious about you and your project. That would become the key to your survival soon enough.
I do sign some with very high-profile clients, I work with many companies in the video game industry, VR development and car industry. NDA is used and enforce, I respect the “go to market” idea behind many projects. But if your idea is to build a system that will allow friends to exchange pictures and video while sharing their emotions with the world, you don’t need an NDA to protect you.
Many people will try to copy your idea, many will try to do the same, reality is that many are already doing it and probably in a much better way than you do, but that idea is yours and the execution of it will define the success of that idea, not a single piece of paper.
//The idea of this article came from the review of an NDA that I signed once and that basically allow me to take the idea and rebuild it in all legitimacy, funny how sometimes a bad piece a paper is actually worse than no paper at all. //