Building your career network
Building your career network, AKA
Staying in touch with people who LEAVE your company:
You need to constantly build your career network. That network is a living breathing tool. Sometimes, the network of people who leave your company can be more valuable to you than those who currently work at your company. That’s because the people that left usually did so in order to pursue better opportunities. If you are stuck in a rut at your current job, you can always look to those people who moved on for advice. In general, networking is the most important thing you can do throughout your career. Networking with the people that you used to work with can yield great benefits. Do not lose touch with these people. You never know what opportunities they could send your way. Here’s a few ways you can benefit from maintaining these relationships:
- They could tell you about other jobs and opportunities you’d be great for- If you maintain consistent communication with former employees, they may be able to hook you up with jobs and opportunities at their current place of work, or elsewhere. People who leave one job to go to another often have an upward career trajectory wherein they can find better opportunities for you as well.
- They could help you to be better at your current job- Assuming that they left to pursue jobs with greater responsibilities, you can always pick their brains for advice on how to master the job they used to do—or, the job that you currently do. They can also provide fresh outsider perspective and insight—more honest than what you’ll get from someone within your company.
- They could be a great reference- It is especially important to stay in touch with former co-workers in high-level management positions, or those that left to pursue one. These people in management or supervisor positions always make for excellent references.
- They could be a good mentor- The people that leave your company typically are on an upward career path, and can provide you with the kind of forward-thinking insight and opportunities you won’t get from a current co-worker. Honest, unfiltered advice, opinions, and direction is what you can get from someone who isn’t protecting his or her own work interests. You no longer work together, which means you can now have a more open, honest, and more personal relationship.
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