Recent research has found that building internal networks and staying in touch with former colleagues pays career dividends.
Thus, if you want to make more money, you will benefit from getting to know your colleagues. But, how do you do that?
The Research – Internal Networks Pay
First off, it’s important to know that 2009 peer-reviewed research found you benefit from connecting with colleagues while you are employed.
In fact, the researchers learned that internal networking improves your:
- Current salary.
- Salary growth over time.
- Career satisfaction.
They studied networking approaches, including:
- Using company events to make new contacts.
- Talking with colleagues from other departments about their work.
- Asking colleagues for advice.
- Accepting invitations to company-related functions and festivities.
- Asking colleagues to give regards to others.
- Exchanging professional hints and tips with others.
As you can see, regardless of your company’s culture, you can use their list for ideas to build your network.
Try These Internal Networking Activities
Drawing on the research, try some of these activities:
- Attend company events.
- Chat with your colleagues.
- Ask co-workers for advice.
- Play ping pong with your aspirational next boss.
- Pass along a “hello” to a colleague at a different location.
- Be willing to give and receive mutually beneficial information.
- Connect with colleagues on LinkedIn.
Stay in Touch with Former Colleagues
Additionally, newer research published in 2017 reported that former colleagues are the best source of new jobs.
60% of 380 job seekers in a Bay Area job hunting group found jobs through former colleagues (click for more on how to stay in touch with former colleagues).
BTW, the research is also interesting because it means that employee turnover is good for your career. Every time a former colleague joins a new company, you gain a potential ambassador in that organization!
What’s the ROI on Creating an Internal Network?
In summary, networking delivers these meaningful returns:
- First, you will like your job better.
- Second, you will make more money.
- Third, you will find your next job more easily.
What’s not to love?
Updated July 2019
© 2016 – 2019, Donna Svei. All rights reserved.
Donna Svei, an executive resume writer and former C-level executive, retained search consultant, and CPA, writes all of AvidCareerist’s posts. She has written for and been quoted by leading business, general, and career media outlets, including Forbes, Mashable, Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Business Insider, Lifehacker, Ask.com, Social Media Today, IT World, SmartBrief, Payscale, Business News Daily, and the Muse. Let her background and experience inform your job search strategy and decision making.