Tuesday, October 1, 2013

What's Yours Is Yours ... What's Mine Is Yours

Here’s the scenario: You work for a major company and in the course of your work you “discover” something important that you’ve been working on at home. For the sake of argument, let’s say you discover how to create gasoline from water.

Now you want to patent your invention, but your employer informs you that the COMPANY owns any patents when it comes to manufacturing and marketing YOUR invention.

How would you handle it? Would you hire a lawyer to represent you, arguing that it’s YOURS that you’ve worked on at home and only one aspect was discovered while in the workplace? Or would you accept the fact that since you made your discovery on company time, it belongs to the company?

Would you just give it away or would you try to bargain for some additional dollars, as in the way of a bonus, since it was your INTELLIGENCE and PERSEVERENCE that made the product possible?

Knowing how companies are, I think I might just be tempted to leave that company, relax on vacation for a couple of months, then come back home and present the concept to several companies and sell to the highest bidder.

Knowing how companies are, I don’t think I’d feel guilty doing this. We workers mean little or nothing to the companies we represent. If we leave their employ they expect two-weeks’ notice. When they decide to give US the ax, it’s cut-and-dry and we’re out the door the moment we’re told we’re through.

So how would YOU handle it, knowing you could be rich beyond belief on one hand or would the altruistic you take over “for the good of mankind”?

Memo to self: Altruism, smaltruism. It’s mine. © 2008 RJScott

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