By Matt Manero

I believe with 100% certainty, that the people you hang around with dictate your success or failure. If you hang around rich people, your chances to be rich go up. Hang around poor people and your changes to be poor go up. The same principle applies to friends, happiness and fitness among just about anything else. The question becomes, ”If I come from no contacts, connections, or influence, how do I get the attention of the people I want to meet and hang around?” Dale Carnegie wrote the legendary book, “How to Gain Friends and Influence People” in 1936. The concepts in the book still hold true today, so go get the book and read it. But in today’s fast paced world of the internet, social media and tons of scams, how can we get attention today?

Here is my 6 step checklist to help you move up the food chain and connect with the players, the influencers, and the top dogs you want to become:

#1. Be Ready: You never know who might walk on or off the elevator, so be ready. Have your intention, your value, your benefits, your plan down pat. When the opportunity presents itself, you need to be ready to deliver. It might be the only chance you get.

#2. Get Their Attention: When I got introduced to Gary Vaynerchuks’ material, I was blown away. I also learned that Gary V. has a dream of buying the New York Jets. So what did I do? I bought a Joe Namath autographed New York Jets Helmet, and sent it to him with a nice card thanking him for his awesome content and wishing him the best on reaching his dreams. The sad part is Gary V. never sent me anything in return. But I see my helmet in many of his videos, and you can rest assured that when I do meet him, I will reference MY helmet and get his attention.

#3. Solve a problem for them: Influencers don’t need more on their plate, they need less. So if you help them solve a problem, you get their attention.

#4. New information: What do you know that they don’t know? Do you know about new technology, new programs, new regulation that would be news to them? If so, you just became more valuable. Offer your information wisely and legally, but don’t be shy…offer it up.

#5. Execution: The biggest question a heavy hitter is asking is “who is going to pick up the shovel and start digging the ditch?” In other words, who is going to execute the new plan, or new idea. If you can do more than just come up with a good idea and actually execute, you become valuable to them. Become most people just take the first step. Be the person who can take it from idea to scoreboard.

#6. Be yourself: Top dogs already have plenty of people nipping at their feet, they don’t need more. So be yourself. If you like hunting…talk about hunting. If you wear loud colored clothes…wear them proud. By being yourself, you separate yourself from most of the other people who are trying to be someone or something they are not, and players see that junk coming a mile away.

Remember, who you associate with matters. Learn these skills, use the wisely and often and as fellow Dallas, resident Zig Ziglar used to say…SEE YOU AT THE TOP

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Matt Manero is the Founder and President of Commercial Fleet Financing, Inc. (CFF) located in Dallas, TX. CFF is celebrating its 20th year in business and provides financing for commercial fleet vehicles such as box trucks, cargo vans, big rigs, tow trucks, dump trucks and construction equipment, CFF is the proud recipient of the 2014 & 2015 Inc. Magazine Top 500/5000 fastest growing private companies in America. Matt has helped dozens of employees and thousands of small business owners move closer to the money they deserve. He has written 2 books. The Grit is available at and his latest book “I NEED MORE MONEY” will be out in the fall of 2016. Learn more at or call 972.247.8447 phone on twitter @mattmanero