By Bunmi Sofola
Being a celebrity is so easy! You too can be a celebrity! We all want to be seated at the best tables in restaurants and walk on red carpet, but would we really enjoy a posse of paparazzi snapping at our heels? Celebrities pay a price for being on the public stage. But if you want it, you can have the glamour without paparazzi following your every move.
All right, you may not even make the list, but this isn’t about fame. This is about making people feel that the lights have suddenly brightened just because you’ve entered the room. Here’s how to be on the A-list in your own world by people who have actually tried and succeeded.
Make work your stage: Whether you’re briefing your team on a new project or selling clothes in a shop, you need to give your job the same kind of oomph the celebs give theirs. Wherever you work, that is your stage, perform on it well and you’ll steal the show,
Make a name for yourself: Celebs are more than what they do. They are names. Editors know that names in headlines attract attention. Decide what name you’re going to have. Imagine it on an invitation to a first night, or on the list of employees put up for promotion. What name do you want to see there – the nickname everyone knows you by or your fool moniker?
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What would we think of Hilary Clinton if she’d called herself Hills? And would Catherine Zeta Jones be such a name if she’d styled herself Katie Jones? When you’ve picked your name, use it whenever you can. Answer the phone with it and sign it on everything you can.
Get your name about: Getting your name known is easy if you’re prepared on what you read – write a letter to the editor. Or write an article and see your name on the byline. Give talks. Set up special interest groups and make sure your name is on the publicity. Be the spokesperson for the group you’re involved with.
The more you get your name about, the more people will claim to know you. Friends you haven’t spoken to in ages will ring to say they saw your picture in the paper when you were handing out prizes at your eldest’s school.
Conference speakers will seek you out during the break to discuss the question you asked in more details. Soon, you won’t be the one glancing around a room wondering who to talk to. People will want to talk to you. You’ll begin to feel like a celeb.
Keep something back: Now that your name is getting known by a wider audience, you can’t afford to slip back into being just one of the gang. By all means, go for a drink after work, but don’t stay too long. People will gradually come to understand that they have to share you with others. Don’t automatically accept all invitations. You’re now on a very busy schedule and have lots of demands on your time from lots of people. Whoever gets you will need to feel that they’re lucky to have you, they’ll treat you as the star guest.
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Don’t let it go your head: No one likes a big head and the best loved celebrities are those whose generosity of spirit wins our hearts. True stars have a radiance. When you talk to people, give them your undivided attention. Don’t look around for someone more important to talk to. For two minutes or so, you can make the person you’re with feel special, and after you’ve gone, they’ll feel a warm glow for having been in your presence.
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