Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Economics lessons and a year's supply of diet coke

When I was a student at BYU, the most valuable class I took was Economics 110. We didn't delve into advanced econometrics or even use any complex formulas, we just learned some valuable lessons, such as "there's no such thing as a free lunch" and that every activity we engage in has an opportunity cost. We also learned that economics affects human behavior and certain activities become more common when an incentive exists to perform them.

As much as I have enjoyed my summer off, there is an opportunity cost to it. Like a new bike frame or a pair of skis every week kind of opportunity cost. Or a year's supply of diet coke. Moreover, I would not have made nearly the progress I have in my job search without the benefit of networking and referrals.

Beginning today, I am running a contest. Actually, scratch that. It's not a contest. Let's call it an economics-based study in human behavior. In fact, I should contact the freakonomics guys and get them in on this. Anyway, here's the deal:

You provide me with a referral that leads to me accepting a job offer, and I'll buy you a year's supply of diet coke.*

*Year's supply of diet coke defined as one 24 can case per week for 52 weeks. And yes, I will actually deliver it to your house. Year's supply of diet coke can be substituted for something of comparable value, such as a new suspension fork for your MTB, a GPS, a pair of ski bindings, a night out for you and your special someone, a (1) pair of Assos bib shorts and a jar of chamois cream, etc. The better the job offer, the more latitude I'm willing to give on this.

I suspect that at this point you may be intrigued but have no idea how to proceed. After all, I don't even use my name on this blog, let alone tell you what I do for a living. In the spirit of enabling my research to proceed uninhibited, if you'd like to get a better idea what sorts of jobs I'm interested in and qualified for, look here.

If, based on what you've read about me, you think you have found a good fit, you can leave a comment or email me at skibikejunkie at gmail dot com with more information about the job and whom to contact. Your likelihood of success of course goes up if you know the hiring manager and want to hand deliver the resume along with a personal note, but I'll leave that up to you.

I'll track which leads came from which sources. When the search ends, I'll notify the recipient of the incentive. It's as simple as that. Well almost as simple as that. The job has to be in Utah or perhaps Boise or somewhere else where I really want to live. I'm not moving to Cleveland or Tulsa just so you can have free diet coke next year.

Now the fine print:

1. This economic incentive research is being run by me, at my discretion, and at my expense. That means I reserve the right to end it at any time, with or without notice, or even to change the rules. The contest will end on or before September 30, 2008. If I still don't have a job by then, I will be too poor to provide the agreed-upon incentive.
2. The incentives are retroactive. For instance, UTRider has already provided me with a really good lead. I also know he's in the market for a Reba fork. If I get the job, the fork's on me.
3. If you'd like to link to this contest from your blog, I haven't quite figured out how to reward the blogger that the lead comes from, nor am I even sure how to track it. Just know that if I can figure out that the lead came from your blog, I'll make it worth your while.
4. The contest is over when I accept a job offer, and the winner will be the person that referred me to the offer I accept. Even if I receive more than one offer, there will only be one winner. If more than one person refers me to the same opportunity, we'll do a tiebreaker or consult King Solomon regarding a just way to split the bounty.
5. I reserve the right not to accept any offer for any reason, for instance if the compensation isn't satisfactory, I don't like the boss, the company's long-term prospects don't look good, or any other reason. In other words, if you hook me up with a job offer at Burger King, don't think I'm going to give you diet coke. Unless the Burger King job is owning several franchises.
6. There are no contracts expressed or implied; I'm just trying to get more eyes and ears open for job opportunities that will pay me a fair salary and for which I am qualified.
7. The job does not have to be on the Wasatch Front, even though that's my preference, but it does have to be in a location I am happy with. Telecommute/virtual jobs are fine, as long as I get to choose where I live.


  1. I'll keep my eyes open for you. Not because I want a years supply of Diet Coke, but because I want you to get a job in UTAH!

  2. call me 801-220-0383

  3. Mark,

    If i think of any leads, I will give them to you. I don't want you in Utah, but I do want the diet coke for free. ( we're on the job hunt too, ya know! ) Just kidding..... Truth be told, I would love to have you here. It will happen!!

  4. Just sent you a LinkedIn invitation. It's long shot, but I might have some contacts in Boise that could help.