THE BLOG

Want to Meet Powerful People? Five Places to Look

11/29/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

The image is one thing and the human being is another. - Elvis Presley

Fame breeds fame. The fact is, all my prowess for reaching out to other people would be far less effective if a few of those people in my Rolodex weren't well-known names. Problem is, while we're excited by the idea of meeting "celebrities," they are often not all that anxious to meet us. So how can we get close to them?

Yes, it helps to be at the right places and invited to the right events. But the fancy weekends and invite-only conferences aren't the only ways to meet important people. In America, there is an association for everything. If you want to meet the movers and shakers directly, you have to become a joiner. It's amazing how accessible people are when we meet them at events that speak to their interests.

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There's nothing wrong with looking for ways to spend time with people who have accomplished more and have more wisdom than you. Once you put yourself in position to connect with the famous and powerful, the key is not to feel as if you're undeserving or an impostor. You're a star in your own right, with your own accomplishments, and you have a whole lot to give to the world.

If you pursue celebrities in a sincere manner, with good intentions, you're not being manipulative. And if you are emboldened by a mission and you've put in the time and hard work to establish a web of people that count on you, then the time will come when your growing influence will put you in a place where you'll be face-to-face with someone who can help you make a difference.

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