Today’s careers are often not with one company. It is becoming the standard that people will often work at 3 to 5 different companies over a 30 to 40 year career span, sometimes even more. Given this information, think of all the colleagues you’ve either had or will have. Realize that your interactions with them can impact your future success.
One’s network of friends and professional colleagues are the best source for referral, often identifying and presenting new opportunities. Therefore, your work and personal reputation, as well as the character and integrity of the friends and colleagues you associate with, are your greatest asset.
In order to foster your relationships, you must hold yourself to the same standard that you hold them to. When you work with great people, you will want to work with them again and vice-a-versa. Your colleagues desire to want to work with you, and/or support and want for your success can truly be a strong ally. A referral from a former colleague is always powerful and a good reference from one is even better.
When others want your success you have a greater chance of a successful career. Thus, always avoid leaving a firm on a bad note, and stay connected with past and current work colleagues and friends. Likewise, remain consistent in your willingness and personal character to help and engage with others regardless of company, role, responsibilities or title. When you help a former or current work friend/colleague they will be inclined to return the favor in your moment of need.