Beals: Earn star status in your field to get a step ahead

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Posted: Tuesday, December 24, 2013 12:00 am | Updated: 3:21 pm, Wed May 21, 2014.

Brett Favre's Steakhouse, located at 1004 Brett Favre Pass in Green Bay, Wis., is full of memorabilia from the famous Green Bay Packers quarterback's legendary career.

The walls are covered with Favre posters, enlarged covers of Sports Illustrated editions featuring Favre and old Favre game jerseys. Wandering around the restaurant, you'll find some of Favre's trophies and personal items on display. It's a shrine to all things Favre and all things Packers.

In the booming downtown of Austin, Texas, you'll find the Vince Young Steakhouse named after the legendary University of Texas quarterback who led the Longhorns to a national championship in 2005. This prime steakhouse is so elegant inside, you would think you were in midtown Manhattan were it not for the massive photo mural of Young at the Rose Bowl and a statue of a longhorn steer in the lobby.

In the Boston suburb of Hingham, Mass., you'll find Wahlburgers, named after movie star Mark Wahlberg. Michael Jordan's Steakhouse is located on the Magnificent Mile in downtown Chicago. Arnold Palmer's restaurant is a popular draw in La Quinta, Calif.

Wherever you go there's a good chance you're not far from a celebrity-affiliated restaurant named after some famous actor, rock star or professional athlete. Celebrity-affiliated restaurants succeed for many reasons, but certainly one of the biggest reasons is the name, the brand.

It's the power of celebrity. People love to associate with people who have done great things.

If it works for restaurants, it can work for us too. That's what makes personal branding such an important skill for entrepreneurs, salespeople and professionals of all sorts. Whether you like it or not, you will probably do more business and go further in life if a large number of people have heard your name and have a positive feeling associated with it.

The key is to become a celebrity in your own sphere of interest.

You need the people who have influence over your success — clients, prospective clients, stakeholders, colleagues, influential members of the public, etc. — to recognize your name and know what it stands for. You accomplish this by doing good work, building a large list of contacts and making sure those people know about you and what you do.

Most of us are modest enough that we wouldn't feel comfortable naming a prime steakhouse after ourselves, but just as diners are attracted to a famous quarterback's restaurant, people in your life can get very excited about you.

If you become a celebrity in your own sphere of interest, people will be more likely to return your call, recommend you to future clients and bring unsolicited opportunities your way.

Jeff Beals is an Omaha author and speaker who can be reached at

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