SCORE St. Louis September 2019



Follow these simple guidelines and turn a lackluster interview process into a worthwhile experience. Potential job candidates, by their very nature, have the desire to impress.As an entrepreneur, it’s in your best interest to use that desire to its highest capacity. Even if your candidate isn’t quite the best person for the job, you’ll have a much better understanding of how a few well-constructed questions can make all the difference. With SCORE, you’re never alone! Schedule an appointment to meet with a mentor today. Call 1-866-726-7340 or visit right now!

hypothetical questions can be revealing in some cases, but they can also easily steer you away from what you really need to know. Similarly, asking a candidate what a past employer might say about them leaves the door open for generalized assumptions.When in doubt, resort to questions that showcase what a new hire can bring to the table. BE SPECIFICTOYOUR COMPANY Finally, turn the attention to your company. Ask your candidates what they think your business can do to improve its operations.This turns the conversation away from topics like a candidate’s personal weaknesses and allows you to learn about your company from an outsider’s perspective. It’s one thing to ask a candidate why they think they should be hired, but it’s another to dig deeper for more detailed answers based on research. Qualified candidates don’t just fix problems; they create long-lasting solutions.

Interviewing for an open position at your business is as much about what you ask a potential candidate as it is about their responses.You don’t want to conclude an interview and realize you don’t know anything about the person you just spent the last 45 minutes with. Improve your interviews with these helpful points to ensure you find the right person for the job every time. MOVE UPTHE Q&A It’s okay for you to expect a little more legwork from your candidates.The best ones know how to research your company, so use the interview to make sure they’ve done their homework. Instead of waiting until the end of the interview for your candidate’s final questions, start by asking what they want to know about the job. STAY RELEVANT Next, ask about their relevant job experience. Resumes, in this case, aren’t always the most revealing. Focus on their examples and how their experience can be applied to your business.Asking

Intellectual Property and Your Business


maintain their competitive advantage.A great example of this strategy is when Sony Pictures patented their animation style for “Spider-Man: Into the SpiderVerse” which grossed over $375,502,565.There are two types of patents: one for utility (function) and one for design (aesthetic).To apply for a patent, register with the United States Patent Office. Regardless of the type of intellectual property you have, it’s important you identify what type it is and which type of protection is most appropriate. Even a small amount of intellectual property is worth protecting, so start the process now to safeguard it. With SCORE, you’re never alone!We offer workshops and seminars each month to help you develop the skills you need to succeed.Visit today!

Intellectual property is defined by Merriam-Webster as “property (such as an idea, invention, or process) that derives from the work of the mind or intellect.” As you can no doubt glean from this definition, intellectual property can be a lot of things, so it’s important to identify and protect you and your business’ intellectual property. Here are the main categories and protections for your company’s creations.

TRADE SECRETS A trade secret is any useful piece of

distinctive Nike “Swoosh” and the familiar ending sound of Dell’s commercials.To properly protect your trademark, file a trademark application to have it registered. COPYRIGHTS Most people seek protection under copyright law for a variety of things related to their product or business, like images, specific words on packaging, labeling, the actual product, and the business webpage.The best thing about copyright registration is that it’s inexpensive. Plus, the law allows you to demand attorney fees from those who infringe on your copyright. PATENTS Patents are a fantastic way to protect your designs, and companies have utilized patents to

information that the public doesn’t know about and the owner has taken steps to protect. If you have taken the steps necessary to protect your own trade practices, you may have a case if you ever discover your trade secret has been leaked. Having your employees sign a nondisclosure agreement (NDA) is a great way to initially establish your unique business practices as trade secrets. TRADEMARKS The name of your business, product, or service — anything a customer uses to identify a product — generally requires a trademark.This may include your company’s name, product name, etc.Think of the

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