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Any type of business venture involves risks. However, every company has more than just assets like ROI, other investments, capital, and their workforce. There are other things that need to be protected as well such as client lists/files, trade secrets, formulas/recipes, inventions, etc. After all, not all your partners and employees will be working with and for you indefinitely, so make sure you deal with minute details in the agreements you sign with them so things stay put even when they make their exits.
Alex Montgomery, an Ohio-based copyright and trademark attorney, mentions some of the following agreements you might want to consider:
• Non-solicitation agreements: This type of agreement would help prevent exiting employees from taking fellow staff with them; it restricts employees who are leaving from taking others with them, and this includes customers/clients as well.
• Social media policies: In this type of agreement, you need to define what kind of relationship your company will have relative to various social media, define what social media is, whether or not you will be monitoring employee use of social media impacting business, etc. Ensure you know what you need to look into, and what not to encroach upon (in relation to your people’s use of social media) as a business owner.
• Computer use and access provisions: Guidelines/rules on the use of company-provided gadgets like laptops, mobile phones, pagers, etc. You will need to set limits on what they can use these items for especially when it comes to confidential information.
• In business, you must protect intellectual property
• Customer lists and trade secrets must stay intact
• Specific agreements help protect what is yours
Source: Lovely Claire CD, Special to Classifieds
The writer is a freelancer