I get it: when you’re starting out, when you’ve just come up with an idea or are looking at new business opportunities, you’re excited. We all have to start somewhere. And usually that start is at the beginning. But do your homework first! I understand that when we’re younger, we usually think we know it all. But I’ve seen so many mistakes from individuals who won’t pick up the phone, who won’t contact people in an industry that know so much more than they do.
Ask questions! Get to know the veterans! Temporarily throw your ego into a box, and shut it. Listen to people who have been around the block a few times. You may be eager to put a stamp on your new project or organization or group or whatever – great. But if your ego and your eagerness result in hurrying or ignoring advice from seasoned professionals, you’re hurting yourself.
You certainly don’t have to take the advice of others. But at the very least, truly listen to it! It doesn’t matter if your intentions are good. You may seriously be hurting your chances if you hurry through these first steps. There are so many good resources out there. Please use them. I love it when people are excited – but slow down! Get good advice before you move forward (even if you decided to throw it out the window).
Stephen Key is a successful award-winning inventor who has licensed
over 20 products in the past 25 years. Along with business partner
Andrew Krauss, Stephen runs inventRight, a company dedicated to educating inventors about selling their ideas and the skills needed to succeed. You can ask questions and get advice on the inventRight forum, check out the resource center, and listen to the weekly radio show on inventing. Get In The News, list your invention to have media outlets find you for news stories.