Leave a comment, win a $20 Starbucks gift card

by Rich DeMatteo on April 5, 2010 · 113 comments

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CONTEST WINNERS ANNOUNCED AT THE BOTTOM

Since last week I’ve been kind of in a give something awesome away mood.  And since I figure that most of you are raging coffee drinkers, a $20 Starbucks gift card is that awesome something.  So, how do you win?  Check the contest details below…

Starbucks-Gift-Card-Certificate

COTJ’s Awesome $20 Starbucks Gift Card Contest

How to win – It’s simple.  Just leave a comment below and that counts as your submission.  You have until Friday, 12:00 PM Eastern Time to leave one.

Comment Guidelines – Alright, so in your comments I’m specifically looking for a few things:

  • A topic suggestion or question you have that could be a post on COTJ
  • Suggestions for changes on COTJ (new pages, navigation, plug-ins)
  • Submit a question for #JobHuntChat
  • Your thoughts on my about section.  Should I update/change?

Bottom line is to just leave a comment that is meaningful.  Leave me something of value to me and the Corn Heads. If your comment just says “Hi”, or looks spammy, then it won’t count as a submission.

Picking a winner – When the deadline passes on Friday, I’ll head over to a random number generator and pick out the winner.

Let’s get it started folks!

So I actually decided to hand out four gift cards instead of one.  Here are the winners;

$20 Starbucks Card Winner – Kelly Ashworth

$10 Starbucks Card Winner – Grace Boyle

$5 Starbucks Card Winner – Megan Cassidy

$5 Starbucks Card Winner – Reed Porter


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101 comments
Lina
Lina

Ok..I'm not sure if this website is the right place for this but Starbucks really needs to have Lactaid Milk.

Derrick
Derrick

Comment Overload... Trying to process all 90 comments in a few mins is painful but I think I can give some input here. I've seen a lot of comments about updating...well, about everything on your blog. I personally like rockin the tie in the cornfield header. I can see updating a little more professional but keep your personality into the design! One idea to toy with, which I think might go outside your goal here, but I think it would be beneficial. Have a recommended links page that you personal found useful for different topics. An example, if someone asks you where to look for salary negotiation where would you send them? Your #jobhuntchat follow is looking for that information; why not get it from someone the "trust" from your blog. Blog topic and questions for #jobhuntchat: What are some "out of the box" ways to sell yourself in any phase of the hiring process? What should carry more weight in a job hunt, a job title or a company culture? What if you had a section each week that discussed how to answer one interview question? Not just how to answer but why the interviewer asked the question. For example, "Share with me a time that you had a conflict with someone?" What is the interviewer looking for? Well, they are looking for your SBO. What was the situation? what was your behavior? And what was the outcome? If your readers could get insight like this once a week or month or whatever understanding what the interviewer is looking for from your experience I think could give real value to you your corn heads. Obviously the wheels are turning too fast tonight...probably since I've decided doing a blog is just not going to happen. Hope something is of value!

Derrick
Derrick

wow...how about I try proof read next comment.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Derrick - wow, thanks for the great input. Very much appreciated. I will keep your design suggestions in mind when I start updating things here! I have a Blog Roll, but that blog roll isn't targeted to specific websites, just blogs obviously. Maybe I do need a specific targeted links section that can send people to places for salary negotiations. Interesting thoughts. Solid topic and #JobHuntChat suggestions too! Each week I think is a bit much, but maybe a monthly question. Rather than nit pick every little question, maybe I'd tackle the bigger, more occuring questions. Phew, thanks for the solid feed back. Much appreciated!

Megan Cassidy
Megan Cassidy

Hey Rich, For discussion on #u30pro or #jobhuntchat...if you send an email to a contact you haven't been in touch with for a while, and they don't respond, what's the best way to handle it? Should you try getting in touch with the person again and assume they just got busy? Or think they were turned off by my not staying in touch with them and not try again?

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Megan - Great suggestion, I might dig into this further in #JobHuntChat, but I would assume they were busy. Reach out again in a week or two on the phone or in person. Also, I'd make sure in the first email you explain why you were distant. The truth is, they were distant also! Thanks for the comment!

Michelle Barbeau
Michelle Barbeau

Hey! I love the concept and wit behind your site. The only thing I'm not getting is the grass background. It doesn' t seem to go with the whole corn field idea. Maybe change it to dirt? I dunno.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hi Michelle - thanks so much for the comment. I was just talking over my background with my blog developer. We MIGHT look into a new background. Maybe dirt does go more with corn, but I'm not sure brown matches my theme, but that could work. Thanks for the suggestion! Keep on the look out for some design changes here!

Michelle Barbeau
Michelle Barbeau

No problem! By the way, I'm currently writing an article for work (myigrad.com) called on the top 10 career bloggers for recent grads, and you're on it! I'll send you a link once it's up.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hi Michelle - thanks so much for letting me know and picking me! Make sure you let me know when it's live, and I'll tweet it out a bit!

Erica
Erica

When you're working somewhere as a contractor and they offer you a FT job, are you expected to take it without negotiating? Can you expect that they're giving you the absolute best offer that they can, or do you treat it the same as any offer received, and negotiate as you see fit? I am currently in this situation. I was laid off from a Fortune 500 company early in 2009. I bounced around to a couple of contract gigs, then landed here in Sep, where I've been since. I love it! The industry is exciting and challenging, the people on my team are great, and I see potential for growth. On the downside, the base salary of the offer I received today is less than I was making in Jan 2009 at Company X, though there is bonus potential here, and the role I'm being offered is one level below where I feel my experience (and performance to date) deserves. Is it out of line for me to counter / negotiate? Thanks in advance! -e P.S. Due to the decrease in potential salary, I am the perfect candidate for receiving a gift card to SBUX!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Erica - Definitely negotiate as you see fit! You should always negotiate if you don't feel comfortable. Definitely negotiate and counter. Take the job since you love it, but feel free to negotiate. Thanks for this topic idea!

Carole
Carole

It's rare nowadays to get any feedback once you've applied for a position, especially with Companies demanding that you use their online application process. Any suggestions for cutting through the technology?

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hi Carole - I agree. Gaining feedback is tough and a sticky issue. This might be great for #JobHuntChat, but what I might do is take the answers from #JobHuntChat and bring it to COTJ. Thanks!

Bridget Forney
Bridget Forney

After some more thought about my last comment, I wanted to re-comment for the second time to make it clear that I am not "in it" for the Starbucks. I mean yes, it would have been enough to just use that catchy subject line, but instead you uploaded an ACTUAL image of a REPLICA Starbucks gift card...I think that's what did in a lot of people. It really carried the "I'm here to bribe you" message across. At any rate, I'm not leaving comments just for the Starbucks. To prove it, I've decided to give you another pearl of wisdom from my very own brain. It goes as follows: You should make your own NING community. Do you need a bowl to collect your skull fragments from the ground from me just blowing your mind? Also...invite the jobless to your community to share ideas about job hunting, etc. as well as the employed to share success stories - A blog is great for a one person communication avenue with occasional comments - but NING communities make it easy for people to connect with each other and talk/comment on each other - not just you. That is all

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Bridget - 3 comments from you.... looks like you are really trying to beat the system! We'll see how you do! The NING community could be amazing. I'm looking into that soon actually! Thanks!

Shane Mac
Shane Mac

You have job seekers and job posters, why not have a simple job board where you are the connector/moderator? Job boards are noisy nowadays and need a filter. Big opportunities there IMHO for you, job seekers, and recruiters. Love to chat about this as I have thought about it before but just didn't dive into it. 37 Signals does the job board well and could be one idea since they have people in their industry looking for jobs. http://jobs.37signals.com/jobs Just a thought, Shane Mac

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Shane - Great idea - I've toyed with this as well. I need to check out 37 signals and see what it's all about. Thanks man!

Lindsay
Lindsay

I'd love to read about what to do when you're not finding jobs in a particular industry, and how to go about branching out your applications into other-- and not necessarily related-- industries. How do you pick/choose where to go from there?

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Lindsay - Great suggestion for #JobHuntChat I think. I think this will fit in perfect with that crowd. Thanks for the comment!

Bridget Forney
Bridget Forney

I applaud you. Your bribe technique is most impervious. Still, tipping a hat to my competitive nature, I believe this "contest" should be judged by quality of comment and since I already left the best comment out of anyone I'm commenting again to increase my chances of winning. Random number generator, I've beat you this time! MUAHahah.

Bridget Forney
Bridget Forney

I am considering now posting comments under different aliases. You'll never know........except I just told you...... Anywaysssssssss.......

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

If you pose it as Fidget Borney I'll know...

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

You are just trying so hard to beat the system. You are trying to beat the numbers game, because you obviously just love numbers so much. Sneaky my friend, very very sneaky.

Erica
Erica

Hello! I think your "About Me" page is very professional with the right amount of personal and professional information. However, I noticed it says you're going to "officially graduate" from Villanova in December 2009. I would edit the sentence a little to say that you graduated from Villanova in December 2009; otherwise, it may give the impression that your site is outdated. I hope that's helpful! Also, while I can't always make #JobHuntChat, I always search the tag afterward to see what was discussed. I'm searching for an entry-level communication position in the DC area, and it's great to have an outlet for discussion on "the hunt" with others!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Erica - thank you for the edit suggestion. Umm, I definitely need to fix that ASAP. Also, I'm happy that #JobHuntChat has helped, even a little. If you can ever make it, we'd love to have you participate. Thanks!

Geoff Peterson
Geoff Peterson

Good idea! Rewards always bring in the herd - I once did a "help me name my blog" contest on LinkedIn a few years back (before Twitter's time) and offered a $250 gift certificate of their choice to the winner. I had over 500 comments and submissions in 7 days. So, sticking with that idea, if you offer even the smallest of incentives to your audience/readership, such as a Starbucks gift card, it usually goes over big. Next try giving away anything you don't have to pay for in dollars. How about a hour of free consulting on a topic of the winner's choice? How about recruiting help on a specific search? Try a mention or feature post on a person or company that wins. Just some food for thought.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Goeff - thanks for the comment. Wow, 500 comments in 7 days! That's insane. Very very interesting take. I like the idea of a mention or feature post on a person or company that wins. Thanks for your thoughts on this, and sharing some ideas for the future. Really helpful!

Ron Katz
Ron Katz

About your "About". Love the kid picture, but your headshot needs updating. It may look like you but it doesn't show you to your best advantage. Too dark, not the most welcoming expression. Consider a professional photographer. Looks like it may have been taken by a friend. You may like the picture, but it could do more. And I'm not even a Starbux junkie, i prefer Dunkin'!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Ron - I think you are right. New head shot, but not sure I can go professional. Maybe I can find someone to do a cheap professional photo for me. Hmmm, if you win, I'll get you a $20 dunkin card, deal?

Sabrina Kidwai
Sabrina Kidwai

I think one topic you may want to address is the importance of networking and how it will help you find a job. It would be great to have guest bloggers or a topic for #JobHuntChat to discuss how to network (what questions to ask, how to do it and not go about asking for a job). I had lunch with one of my family friends this weekend, and her daughter is going to be a senior in college. She is trying to figure out what she wants to do. She mentioned that she met all these great contacts, and I asked her if she sent thank you notes for their help with her project or sent a follow-up e-mail. She said that no one told her about these things. I mentioned that her parents are a great outlet, but she was like they don't listen or get what I'm saying. So, I think a topic of how students can communicate with their parents for advice would be a great topic, too. It's important to not forget to do the little things (hand-written thank you's, call if you can't make an interview or let the employer know that you aren't interested, etc.). I've seen an applicant send her resume and cc all the potential companies a generic cover letter and resume, and I was shocked! Hope that helps! Sabrina

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Sabrina - good suggestion. This is something I've somewhat covered before, but maybe not the exact way you are looking. Go to my categories, and go through the networking posts. I will add more networking questions for #JobHuntChat - make sure to keep an eye on the chat for future networking questions! Thanks!

Mint Shows
Mint Shows

Question, my wife has a law degree, but no professional experience. She isn't interested in becoming an attorney, and is more interested in an administrative / professional position such as a contracts administrator. The issue is that she's not getting any call-backs for jobs that claim to allow extra education to count for experience. In your opinion, how often will an HR rep actually evaluate education over experience??

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Mint Shows - In my opinion, experience definitely outweighs education, but both are important. I'll think about this more and contact you by email with some answers! Thanks for the question!

Cynthia Fox-Giddens
Cynthia Fox-Giddens

I would like to find ways to get my resume to the top of the pile at the companies when I apply for jobs. I know the job market is tough, but I am not getting any responses at all. I am networking like crazy. Just need some career advice. Thanks!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Cynthia - Yep, I'd say that's a very important topic! I'll look into some methods that I can post on COTJ for you. Thanks for this suggestion!

Melissa
Melissa

I've been looking for work for the last two years, ever since I finished law school but decided not to be a lawyer. How can I combine my unique education without scaring potential employers and get myself an entry level job?

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hi Melissa - Great topic suggestion. Should be perfect for COTJ or #JobHuntChat. Please email me directly if you don't see them answered on either - CornONTheJob @ gmail.com Thanks!

Tim Stiffler-Dean
Tim Stiffler-Dean

For the most part I really like CotJ, but there are a few changes that I could see being made to improve the experience here on the site. 1. Updating the header. While it is fun and unique, it doesn't exactly express the message of the content on the site. Since it's the first thing that people see, I think that it should probably be updated. If you have some extra money, you should check out http://99designs.com/ where you can get a logo designed for a pretty decent price. Redevelop your image aroutd your message, which is defined in your logo/header, and you'll start making some bigger strides. 2. Categories are great, but we need more. Blogs suck for navigation and usability, and so I always recommend trying some layout changes to get people to read more of your awesome content in the past. A lot of times people go to blogs and completely forget that there were great articles written in the past, and only focus on the articles coming in the future. By reforming your blog to put more emphasis on your categories, people will treat the site as a repository of information, rather than an endless flow of it. Give them a way to look over your best articles from the past recently (rather than the un-intuitive category list in the sidebar - though yours is certainly better than others). Hope that helps!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Tim - I'm going to check out 99designs. Seems like a great concept with the contest style they run. Really really cool! I'm going to check that out and find a way to have my header push my message. Also, I love your suggestion to display my best work on the blog. I may make sure to put this on the side bar! Thanks for these suggestions. Really appreciate the constructive criticism!

Tim Stiffler-Dean
Tim Stiffler-Dean

No problem!@ I look forward to seeing you take all of these ideas to heart and making some improvements to your blog!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

You got it, Tim. I am too, really excited to see them alllllllll come into their own!

Lauren Novo
Lauren Novo

Hello! Ironically, I actually clicked on this site not because of the Starbucks incentive, but because of what we had to do to get the Starbucks. I literally just wrote a blog post about comments and how not having a lot of them doesn't detract from your blog's value. But I like what you've done with this prompt. It's a clever and useful way to get some productive feedback from your readers! That's what comments are SUPPOSED to do :) But anyway, a suggestion for your page...I might be missing it, but do you have an RSS feeder? I see the email subscription but I prefer RSS to eliminate the cluttered inbox. Keep up the great work! Lauren

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Lauren - interesting, would love to see what you wrote on this! I need to update my RSS big time and make sure it's clear and easy to navigate to. Great suggestions. Thanks!

Kelly
Kelly

After participating in my first #jobhuntchat last night, I've got a million new ideas running through my head. OK, maybe not a million, but here are a few: How long can you ask a company to let you consider their job offer? On the flip side of what Jen said, how do college grads pitch themselves against people with years experience? She seems to have encountered a lot of people who demand a degree, but I've encountered many who value exp over a degree. Also, how do you negotiate a salary at a job that you got through networking? Specifically, when you know the individual you're negotiating with? How do you handle a potential employer that hasn't been great about communication but continues to express interest? On your about section, I agree with the others saying that your about me could stand to be more personal. Although your personality definitely comes across in chats/posts, its good to let people know about your interests or expertise in other areas. Makes you more human.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Kelly - glad to have you in #JobHuntchat - hope you come back more! Amazing question suggestions for #JobHuntChat. I will be listing these out for future chats. Also, I will try to put more personality into the About me section! Thanks!

Lindsey
Lindsey

I agree with Grace - your about me section can be professional AND personal provided you don't reveal anything incriminating about your background :) Your involvement in Hockey, the types of books you like to read, your commitment to physical fitness, this kind of thing would be great to add! Love that you're bribing us by the way :)

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Lindsey - Yep, I guess I should mention a few of those things, eh? Hockey and fitness might be good to list! Oh, i'm a bribe fan. Whatever I can do to MAKE people stick around :o) Thanks for the comment!