Ryan Seacrest was always working on a plan to dominate the media landscape, even if as a kid, he didn't quite realize it.
"I was always fascinated by the guys on the radio as a kid, when I was interning at a local station in Atlanta," Seacrest, a member of the CNBC Next List, recently told CNBC. "I was in awe of every single mechanic in the operation."
Fourteen seasons of American Idol, a show Seacrest thought would be canceled after the first season, was "the jackpot" that has allowed Seacrest to move beyond his tag as "the next Dick Clark" and become a true media investing mogul. Not that he has forgotten the lessons the actual Dick Clark taught him.
"I would watch Merv Griffin and Dick Clark," Seacrest recalled. "[Clark] pulled me aside, and he said, 'If they all think they can do it, you're doing a good job."