Circle the Wagons
That should include a five-year plan, said Phelon. “If your network knows you’re trying to go from being a finance manager to a vice president of finance in five years, you can get people to rally around that,” she said. “It’s easier than asking your network, ‘Can you forward my resume to so-and-so?’ You may ultimately want to do that, but once you have bosses rallying around your vision, they’re much more likely to be supportive in the execution of that vision.”
Keep in Touch
Now that you’re reconnected, maintaining this relationship is the name of the game–both to make it an equal relationship and to cultivate mentors who may guide your career.
- Share articles and industry-specific information with former bosses.
- Give them an opportunity to share their expertise by asking for suggestions for how to handle situations.
- Offer to connect former bosses with people who could help them.
“Put it on your calendar just like any other work task,” said Palmer. “On a quarterly basis, do something for your former bosses: send them an article, check in on how they’re doing. It doesn’t have to be time consuming. It keeps your name in front of people.”