Second Impressions…Protecting Your Awesome

Yeah…cause first impressions are so overrated.

I have to admit after posting my first blog here on Morning Donuts, I prided myself in the fact that – “I wrote my first awesomeness”.  But second impressions are ALWAYS the hardest.  Yeah it’s easy to be yourself the first time around and show off some talent, but what if you have to do it a second time or third…or for life?  This post is entirely focused at that second impression phenom.

So you have an idea, you’ve worked on that idea, and maybe have already built your prototype.  People around you are telling you how awesome your new invention is and that it’s the best thing since sliced bread.  These warm-hearted embraces and accolades from your buddies may be as awesome as kittens falling from the sky – your heart shudders a bit and your knees go weak from these cute and cuddly critters falling into your lap.  What isn’t coming in…is the greens.  Yeah your idea looks good on paper, but what are the next steps…because that second impression (the one to ACTUAL stakeholders) is crucial.  The first step…protect your idea from prying eyes.

Log Everything About Your Idea

While you are coming up with a way to build George Jetson’s spacemobile – you should probably take a minute to write all of this stuff down.  If you are like me (the artistic type) your brain is in about 400 different directions.  Your mind captures all of the information down in a mental note and then it stays there and eats your brains.  After a while though – those ideas stop being so hungry because you have work, family, school, parties…  What you NEED to do 100% is to write your ideas down!  Get a notebook (no not those loose leaf notebooks or even the ones with the perforated edges) and start writing that stuff down.  I actually recommend that you either go to Wal-Mart or Target and buy a “Composition Notebook” or if you are a little more trendy and wear those hipster jeans, skate on over to Barnes and Nobles or some trendy bookstore in your area and grab a Moleskin notebook.  Not gonna lie – probably the best notebook ever.

Alright well you have your idea…you have a book…I shouldn’t have to say this but did you grab a pen right?  Alright…Alright…I’ll wait…

So what do you need to write down?  Well I’ll tell you…and it’s not all writing mind you.  Be as detailed as possible.

  • What is your idea?
  • How did you come about thinking up this grand idea?
  • What does it do?
  • What does it look like? (This is that writing/non-writing part)
  • Does it help to solve anything? (Process, design, etc.)
  • Draw a picture…

When you draw the picture, people get so wrapped around the axle with statements like – “I can’t draw” or “Are you serious…I know what it looks like!”.  Seriously all you really need to do is draw a line/pen drawing of it.  Even a rough sketch that proves what it conceptually looks like.  If you can’t connect lines or know how to draw a box – try finding someone at a local college looking to do some extra work or something for a college project.  Could be free…could be really cheap.

Having this notebook and keeping it updated is your new-found purpose in life.  Your idea is now the boss of every pen stroke.  Log everything.  Updates to your idea, conversations with people about your idea, and anything else you can think of.  I would suggest to stop eating those chicken nuggets with that ketchup dripping off of them around this notebook.  Keep it clean, keep it professional.  It could come in handy not only as a log of everything “idea” related, but it could come in handy as a legal document if your neighbor has been using his binoculars – stealing your ideas.

Pixar’s Rules of Storytelling Get the Lego Treatment

If there is a company to learn from, it’s Pixar. They’re creative; they’re innovative and their success record is mind boggling.

Last year the many admirers of Pixar were treated to Pixar’s 22 Rules of Storytelling via the twitter feed of Emma Coats, a story artist at the company. Well, now we get great visuals from Alex Eylar, aka ICanLegoThat. Alex took 12 of the rules and gave them the lego treatment.

(via Slackstory)

Louis Vuitton’s Art of Packing

Louis Vuitton launched a new section of their website to help you step your game up when packing your bags for business travel. You don’t need to have Louis Vuitton bags to take advantage of some of these tips. The app itself is very cool as it’s not pushing Vuitton product as much as it’s a fun way to add value to consumers and website vistors.

They developed the app in Flash though so it’s not viewable on your iPad. Seems like it would make a cool touch screen app as well.

What Rambling Anti-Semetic Elmo Teaches Us About Brand Marketing

When the writers at Seasame Street worked with master puppeteer Kevin Clash (if you haven’t checked out the documentary Being Elmo, you should) developed the character of Elmo, they created a beloved little red puppet adored by kids everywhere. In turn, the lovable little guy turned into a megabrand with never ending product extensions – but the overall brand message never changed – it was all about love.

At this point it’s become a cliche to say that brand marketing has changed. With the proliferation of social media, consumers really own the brand and the messaging. Marketers can only hope to create a brand tool kit that creates more evangelists than distractors. It’s enough to make marketers go crazy…

…speaking of crazy, consumers these days could dress up as your brand; head to Central Park and spit anti-semitic remarks while scaring kids.

(via Gothamist)

How To Advertise a Hamburger

Hope Bagozzi, the Director of Marketing of McDonald’s Canada takes us on a tour of what they do to make McDonald’s burgers look more appetizing in their advertising. It’s actually cool that McDonald’s took this question from their social media channels and answered it directly. And…I want to be a food stylist…

(via Ad Age)

Would You Airbrush Your LinkedIn Profile Pic?

Image from

I didn’t even know that was a thing….but apparently, people are using air brushing tools and photoshopping their professional pics on LinkedIn to be more attractive to potential employers. It makes perfect sense that people naturally gravitate to things/people that they find attractive, but if you manipulate your LinkedIn pic, and then show up to the interview your true 30 pounds overweight, bad skinned self aren’t you just setting yourself up to look dishonest?

Image from

From the WSJ post:

… a little light airbrushing could go a long way for some job-seekers. Smoothing out a few lines, while leaving your appearance broadly intact, might help older job hunters look young and energetic, Schawbel says. For seniors struggling to find work — some 52% of those aged 55 and older are unemployed versus just 38% of those under 55 years of age, according to the American Association of Retired Persons – the extra touch-up may help, experts say. LinkedIn connection director Nicole Williams says an “appealing” picture catches the eye of recruiters: “There’s no denying that attractiveness gives you an advantage over the competition.”

Would you alter your LinkedIn profile pic?



Five Things Young Professionals Can Learn From Kevin Garnett

Guest Post by Nick Hansen. Nick writes, watches basketball, and loves strawberry jam. Follow him on Twitter @nickhansenMN

I hate the term “young professional.”  It’s cheeky, condescending, and it makes me seem like I don’t know what the hell I’m talking about. The Heat have a young professional bent to them. Their stylish, exciting, and they’re in it to win it.

That’s all well and good, but they’re down 3-2 against an older Celtics team.

Kevin Garnett has been the Celtics emotional leader and most important player during their current playoff run. Young professionals in the “real world” could learn a few things from the Big Ticket.

Here are five things you can take to your workplace today:

1. Be passionate about your work. Garnett is always yelling and pumping up the crowd during games. Some fans think that sort attitude is annoying, but I think it makes for great basketball and for a more enjoyable work place. A whiny, apathetic workplace brings morale down. Don’t be the whiner at your job. Pump up your co-workers, bring the energy, and do whatever you do with heart. Passion is infectious.

2. Back up your talk. I hate it when people make a big stink about themselves. The often maligned Miami Heat coming out party is the perfect example of this.  I know KG is one of the biggest trash talkers in the NBA, but that’s part of his game. Off the court you don’t hear too much from him. Do your thing, celebrate, and then get over yourself. There’s always another game.

3. Keep the team together. One image from Tuesday night’s game that will stick with me is KG grabbing Mickeal Pietrus’ hand to do the traditional all hands in huddle break. It’s easy to get frustrated in a high pressure situation and let the team get fractured. Keep everyone on the same plane. You never know who might have to take that last shot.

4. Give credit where credit is due. Garnett had another huge game on Tuesday, but Paul Pierce made a clutch three that helped close out the game for Boston. He gave a shout out to Pierce in his post game interview with Doris Burke. Remember to give a shout out to everyone who contributed to your success.

5. Have some fun out there. Keep your sense of humor. Young professionals have the tendency to take themselves to seriously. Loosen up.

5a. And remember… ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!!!!

Nick Hansen writes, watches basketball, and loves strawberry jam. Follow him on Twitter @nickhansenMN

Best Place To Find Jobs: Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter?

In 2011, 18.M million people reportedly found their jobs on Facebook. These numbers are impressive but Facebook still can’t hold a candle to LinkedIn and Twitter.

According to social recruiting company, Bullhorn Reach LinkedIn and Twitter are still your best bet for finding jobs. They surveyed over 77,000 recruiters and dertermined that 77% of jobs will end up on LinkedIn, 54% of postings make their way to Twitter and only 25% will end up on Facebook.

Read the entire report here.


GIVEAWAY: Win a $100 Visa Gift Card

The Pepsi MAX “Uncle Drew” video starring NBA Rookie of the year Kyrie Irving has been an absolute viral success. The video has over 7 Million YouTube views.

The video portrays Kyrie Irving dressed as an elderly “Uncle Drew”. His nephew asks him to play in their pickup hoops game and “Uncle Drew” wow’s everyone with his hoops prowess.

In celebration of the video’s viral succes, Morning Donuts is partnering with Pepsi MAX and giving away:
1. An Autographed Kyrie Irving Pepsi MAX/Nike Jersey
2. An $100 Visa Gift Card

So Simple.
Step 1: Simply “Like” Morning Donuts’ new Facebook page in box below
Step 2: Leave a quick comment below telling us why you think the “Uncle Drew” video went viral

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Prizing is courtesy of Pepsi MAX

Job Hunting? – Here Are 5 Things That Are Way More Important Than Your Resume

Last week on 60 Minutes, Paypal Co-founder and early Facebook investor Peter Thiel said that education doesn’t matter anymore. Don’t agree with that, but one thing that does not matter anymore is the good ol’ resume.When you begin a job search the most common first step is to get your resume up to date. But a resume does not matter anymore. In fact, I would venture to say that you should be weary of company or recruiter who’s first question is “do you have an updated resume?”. It shows that they’re possibly just going through the motions.

Here are 5 things that matter way more than your crusty PDF resume. Focus your attention on these things and you will see more opportunities and get to your next gig faster.

The most important thing these days is to show the work. Employers know that a resume is going to be 90% BS, so they want to see the work. If you’re a web developer, what are the sites you have worked on? If you’re a marketing manager, what products and programs have you launched? You should be tracking and collecting the projects you work on so that you can create your personal work portfolio. It could be a website, a powerpoint presentation, even a video, but it is critical to “show the work”. For better or worse, companies aren’t trying to train new employees anymore; they’re willing to pay you the money you want if you can show that you can come right and make things happen.

LinkedIn Profile
A LinkedIn profile basically is your resume these days. People will look you up on LinkedIn as the first thing they do to see if you are a real person and to get a snapshot of your work to see if you are a legitimate candidate for their job. It’s imperative to keep your LinkedIn profile updated, focus on the keywords that target that type of experiences you are interested in and to make sure your profile tella good story of your career.

Your Network
One of the metrics that you can look at to make sure your career is on track is to measure the jobs you’re applying for vs. the opportunities that people are sending your way. The goal is to have less traditional interviews and more “conversations” about possible career moves. This doesn’t happen over night, but it will only happen by building a close strategic network of contacts. Before you head onto a job board, make sure you’re building and tapping your network for opportunities.

Your Outfit
Seems small, but it’s huge. When you finally get that interview, don’t dust off your navy blue suit because that’s how it’s always done. How you dress shows that you did your homework; spoke to people at the company and that you understand the culture. If you’re applying to a job with a very casual culture and you show up in a three piece suit, you will get judged…negatively. Do your homework and dress the part.

Your Follow Up
(Cliche alert)…Your job search is just like a sales position, only you are the product. So like a sales role, follow up is everything. Recruiters and hiring managers get busy and want to fill their open head counts as much as you want to get a job. You’re not bugging them – when you follow up, you show you’re organized and passionate about the position. Also, like a good sales person, try and follow up with real information – not just “Hey – wanted to check in”. If you see some news about the company or the industry, don’t be afraid to hit your contact with a “Hi, I saw this article online, wondering how this might affect the company’s upcoming launch….”

Some companies are still going to ask for a resume and of course you should send them one, but a resume should not be the primary focus of your job search. Focus on what’s important to get your new job faster.