Before embarking on a new venture, starting a new business or
adding a new group to your existing business you should test your
new opportunity by using an evaluation model. We see too many
people with a business idea, who neglect to undertake basic
research and due diligence. Do not make this mistake.
Preparation is the key to success.
2. Watch out for non-compete restrictions
If you are considering leaving your current job to set up a
business in the same industry, you should take care to ensure that
you are not in breach of the terms of your employment
agreement. Anything you create while you are still employed
may belong to your employer.
3. Protect your assets
Your assets are the lifeblood of your business. It is important
that they are adequately protected. You can protect some
assets by registering a trademark, copyright or patent, or
registering your assets with the relevant authority, for example,
registering your lease with the department of lands, to obtain a
greater level of security. Where registration is not
available you may be able to get your lawyers to draft documents
proving your ownership.
4. Use non-disclosure agreements
Non-disclosure agreements are contracts entered into between two
or more parties, where some or all of the parties agree that
certain types of information that pass from one party to the other
will remain confidential. Non-disclosure agreements are used for
various reasons, including where patent or trade mark protection
has not been obtained or is unavailable, and to assist one party to
evaluate another party's commercial products. The type of
information that can be included under the umbrella of confidential
information is virtually unlimited.
5. Incentivise your team
Successful entrepreneurs understand the need to share the
rewards and the wealth created by a flourishing business to
encourage motivation. Ultimately, the success of the enterprise
will depend on the efforts of many people. There are many
ways that you can share the rewards, including issuing shares,
offering share options, distributing profits and providing
6. Put together a team of trusted professional
There is a tendency for entrepreneurs to put off retaining the
services of professional advisers until they have their businesses
"on track" or have sufficient funding. This is a
common mistake that can prove costly later on and inhibit business
growth. You cannot be an expert in everything, so develop
relationships with accountants, bankers, insurance brokers and
lawyers from day one. In the long run this will save you time
and money. It will assist you by enabling you to focus more
of your time on doing what you do best, working on your business.
Developing relationships with the right Advisers will save you from
being bogged down with compliance and governance tasks, as well as
giving you access to expert advice which will benefit your
Swaab Attorneys was the highest ranking law firm and the
13th best place to work in Australia in the 2010 Business Review
Weekly Best Places to Work Awards. The firm was a finalist in the
2010 BRW Client Choice Awards for client service and was named the
winner in the 2009 Australasian Legal Business Employer of Choice
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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On 12th November 2016, new laws will commence to protect small businesses from unfair terms in standard form contracts.
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