How does one go about bringing an idea to a company?
I have an idea for a new use for an existing product. If adapted, it could be worth tens of millions of dollars more to the company without any changes to the product, other than marketing.
Keeping that in mind, if the idea is adopted, would I benefit from it?
If it’s for an existing product, you’re pretty much SOL. Unless you can get the company to sign something sight unseen. They won’t: they’ll just say that if you came up with it, they will too eventually. If you show it to them without something signed first, they’l just say “Oh, that, we’re already working on the same thing,” then run out to the garage and whip one up while your design is still fresh in their mind.
Good luck (read: don’t waste your time).
I had a similar question a while ago, but I never followed up on it. What I was going to do was get my idea on paper and have it notarized. Then take it to the company’s R&D department, and go from there.
I figure, if you give it to them, have an sum in you mind of how much you want from it. If they say they’re already developing it, call their bluff, threaten that if they don’t have concrete evidence that they’re currently working on it, you’ll sue. Rather than take the trouble of a lawsuit, they’ll settle for the amount you had already decided on in your devious little mind.
Outcome: Instant wealth.
I still need to try this with RJR-Nabisco. I’ve got a helluva product for them.
Ha ha! That’s a good one!
I encountered this same thing a few years back. I watched another employee come up with an idea that not only was more efficent but saved the company a lot of time and money. Truly amazing idea. When he brought the idea to the company they said “Thanks!! We love it!”
He said ‘That’s all??’
Turns out in our employee handbook was a statement refering to any ideas from any employee are company property, along with not being able to work at the same type of company for a year after leaving the present one.
But then again, my friend got $1,000 for his idea.(different company)
He was happy with it. Better than nothing!!
And of course, some companies have a real policy of actively rewarding ideas from employees, usually with stock or other perks. It all depends on the company you’re dealing with.
I think there’s something called a “new use” patent, but I don’t know much about it. You might try doing a little searching at a library or on the net. Good Luck.