Expanding your circle of influence in the office or in your industry is important. Your career hinges on knowing as many people as possible, and you should not shy away from making new friends at every opportunity. There are people in your office today who may get you a better job, and there are people in your industry who will offer you new jobs based on your prior relationship. Based on some of my experiences in this area, this article explores how you may increase your circle of influence through your career.
Make New Friends Every Day
The business relationships you create every day will bring new people into your life, but you should not force business relationships to remain at the office. Make friends that you can talk shop with during parties, and meet the families of the people you know. You may end going to events with these people, and you might vacation with someone you know really well. You will meet mutual friends all the time, and your circle will grow rapidly based on just one friendship.
Make Friends Outside Your Industry
You must be willing to look outside your industry for new friends. The people you meet at the office are helps, but there are business relationships to be made outside your office. People in other industries will notice your own work, and you may end up changing industries based on a relationship you have with someone in another company.
Your friends in other industries help you learn how other businesses do their work, and you will make more mutual friends through your side relationships. You are trying to create a business circle that reaches very far. The people you talk to every day will help you make new friends, and your sphere of influence will increase exponentially.
Make Friends in the Office
You must ensure that you are friends with everyone in the office. You cannot make everyone in the office happy, but you can be friendly with everyone. The most ornery person in the corner cubicle can be your friend if you try hard enough, and you will create a persona that everyone respects. Your career depends on knowing people who can help you at all times, and the people in your own office are your best helpers.
Make Friends With Your Boss
Your sphere of influence should include your boss. Your boss may have strong boundaries, but you are free to chat with your boss about work. A boss who gets to know you is more likely to promote you, and a boss who thinks of you as a human being is more likely to let you improve your career. Striking up conversations with your boss will help open the door to more serious matters, and your career may take off with one good recommendation.
Your career cannot improve if you cannot make friends. Creating a circle of influence starts in your own office, but you may expand outside your office. Making friends around the world of business will give you a wide range of people to lean on when you are ready to take the next step in your career. In my career as founder and CEO of several drug rehab facilities, I have benefited from knowing people in a variety of occupations because drug addiction knows no boundaries, and no matter what business you are in, there will always be something you can do to help someone who needs treatment for drug addiction. Many of the influential people I am affiliated with are not in the rehabilitation business, yet they have become involved in spreading the word about addiction and its dangers, especially to our young people. So, no matter what your business is about, make friends with people outside your field. You will all benefit.