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Why You Should Network – Even When You’re Not Looking For a Job

networkAs I tell my clients, your connections (your network) are most crucial to building your career, and that includes when you’re NOT looking for a job. Networking is a key part of career development, and here’s why.

To best position yourself for success, you need to connect with, learn from, and add value to internal work groups and individuals who can help you reach your career success goals. These are people who can give you advice, share their stories, or help you develop a strategy.

But don’t just focus on connections inside your current company or organization. Not necessarily because you’re looking to leave your job, but getting involved with experts outside of your organization will give you new perspectives.

Social media is a great way to do this. Blogs, career forums, LinkedIn and LinkedIn groups, Twitter – these tools aren’t just for job seekers anymore. Today, social media enables you to learn from others about career development and even position yourself as a thought leader in a certain industry or topic. It’s a great way to find out what the latest trends are in the market and what you should take back to share with your organization.

The point is this – however you do it, networking doesn’t stop once you have the job. If anything, it should ramp up to strengthen your overall career success and satisfaction!