Success driven innovation is one of the responsibilities of inside counsel, though it has to be within the confines of existing law and policy.
In these present times, the whole world is faced with difficult situations. The continuous sale of quantitative easing and government spending is one of the strategies adopted by countries to ease out of the current economic depression. Innovation is the implementation of new technique of doing certain things to create business value. If countries are to sustain growth, it is needful to improve laws and policies related to innovation. But legislation and policy making is not really encouraging in house lawyers to handle innovation with urgency.
In house lawyers are placed in a difficult situation by innovation. Every economic system in the world today is made up of laws guiding government activities. Innovators depart from or resist the current system to create value. This will be a disastrous path to take for lawyers as they are considered the custodian of the system in the real sense. Just the same way the law is been articulated by lawyers in the court of law, in house lawyers are the brain behind the law and policies that guide the economic activities of their companies. Helping organization to drive innovation to success in an aggressive manner is one of the duties of an in-house lawyer. They must also make sure that innovation driven must be done within the confines of the law.
How to recognize and handle innovation initiatives
- One of the duties of in house lawyers when it comes to supporting innovative projects is to determine if the project about to be embarked upon by the company is achievable without having to conflict the stipulated laws and policy guiding the company. Doing so requires the legal department to go back to the drawing board to review and also deliberate on existing laws and policies governing the company. The innovation also has to be seen in a larger commercial picture.
- Some innovative projects may not abide by the existing laws and policies. The task of identifying such conflicts can be accomplished by following the steps below
- Full ownership rights as regards the technology to be used makes the project innovative
- The medium through which the innovation is commercialized
- Bringing the innovative project to the target markets
- How does the government and competitors react to the innovation
- You should know that innovation is no way the same as invention. What is considered to be innovation in an organization or industry may be a constant practice in another. It is very important to research on competitors initiation and how their products and services are being commercialized. This offers great insight on the best practice to apply which offers your company an edge over competitors.