Welcome to part two of our posts on on the value of working with experts to get help with an invention. If you missed our first post on Choosing the Right Invention Idea Expert make sure you check it out.
Working with an expert when seeking help with an invention may not be as straightforward as you would first think. Below, we’ll break down a areas that you’ll need to think about when it comes to getting the most of your invention idea expert.
Learn to Listen
Listen, listen, and listen some more. If you are not listening to what your expert is trying to tell you then you are not only wasting your time but also theirs. After all, chances are that you came to them for help with your invention. Sure, there are a lot of us inventors out there that tend to be scattered brained and listening might not be our strongest asset. If you are one of these types of individuals ask your expert if you can record the conversations that you have with them. Should they tell you, “no”, then make sure that you take plenty of notes.
Most experts out there are busy people. You’ll need to be flexible in order to work around their schedules. Take some time now to look at your calendar and find out where the gaps are or when you can move some of your appointments around in order to be available at a convenient time for your mentor. Location, Location, Location You’ll need to figure out where you could potentially meet with your expert. Are you going to meet at a restaurant, in between a training session at a conference, at a trade show, or at a residence? Then again, maybe meeting in person just isn’t practical for either of you. In that case can you interact online via Skype, through email, Twitter, LinkedIn, or even Facebook?
Make sure that you have some sort of agenda or questions that you would like to ask your expert every time you get together. That way, your meeting won’t waste either your time or your advisor’s time. Creating an agenda is quite straight forward. Simply, write down three items that you would like to get the expert’s advice on and then rank them by priority. Get Feedback Your expert might give you some suggestions on how to make your invention better or how to get through the invention process while avoiding some potential issues. Unfortunately, the advice might not be something that you want to hear. Regardless, take time to really take a step back and evaluate invention help or suggestions that you have been given. If the advice seems sound then implement it. On the other hand, if it does not, then you can either choose to disregard it or follow up on the advice by asking additional questions.
Do your Homework
Your mentor might give you some homework to do prior to your next meeting. If you are given homework, make sure that you really understand what it is that your expert would you like you to do. Next, follow through and actually do the homework. If for some reason you cannot complete your assignment, be prepared to provide a reason to your advisor.
We’ve already recognized that an expert’s time is valuable. Not every expert out there wants to sit through a two hour dinner with you where you ramble about your invention idea or plead for help with an invention. Instead, find ways to talk with your expert during shorter periods of time. Examples include: getting a quick cup of coffee or tea together, offering to drive them to the airport, tagging along as they walk to a meeting, etc.
Potential Costs Involved
There may be potential costs associated when it comes to meeting with your expert that you might not be aware of. Some of these costs that you may incur could include travel expenses to get to your mentor, picking up the check after a lunch meeting, attending a training session that your expert recommended, etc.
Build your Network of Experts
Chances are that any expert you work with will have a list of other expert contacts within their network of friends and associates. Try and tap into this new network of experts as soon as possible. Besides, being able to toss out a few high profile names within an industry may help open up doors to you that might otherwise have been blocked.
The Power of Thank You
Gratitude goes a long way with people, especially with experts. Periodically express your thanks that you can work with them along with the invention help they are providing you.
Now that you have a firm idea of what it takes to be successful with an invention help expert, in our next post, we will be looking into where we can look to find these illusive invention idea experts.