The UK has long been recognised for its ability to originate and develop new ideas. It is also true, often due to commercial necessity, that many of those ideas go forward to be produced in lower cost economies around the world, where they are frequently replicated and produced for sale without consent and at a fraction of the cost of their true value.
The protection of intellectual property (IP) is becoming increasingly important. We often remember the sage advice of our mentors and managers when we first entered a sales environment. One of the first bits of advice given to me was: “Never speak about another person’s business when talking to a customer”. It was good advice, never to be forgotten. As sales people we are in a privileged position where we hear and process huge amounts of critical information which we need to treat with discretion – once trust is lost between an account and an account manager, it’s almost impossible to regain.
As a business we have noticed the increasing use of Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA) to protect the IP of our customers and suppliers. Unfortunately in this day and age, where the threats to IP are so large and potentially costly, NDAs have become entirely necessary. Here at Plastribution, we recognise the need for them and treat them with the importance they deserve.
It is worth pointing out however that although we recognise the need for NDA procedures, our sales behaviour is not controlled or stifled by legalities. We have a stringent induction process where everyone who joins the company is made well aware of the confidential nature of the information they are handling.
Ultimately, we aim to treat all the information that passes through our doors with care and thought, as though all our customers have a NDA in place with us. The financial consequences of a loose word or ill-judged email could be massive, but just as important is the loss of reputation which, for the majority of businesses, is essential for survival.