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Set up your ‘internal network’

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in Career Management,Workplace Communication

Networking with people in other departments can strengthen workplace relationships. Try a twist on the traditional “lunch ‘n’ learn.” Spend your lunch hour getting to know someone who works in another department. Here’s how:

1. Tell your boss, “I have an idea for strengthening relationships inside the company. For example, I don’t know the critical players in other departments as well as I’d like to. I know others who feel the same way. Getting to know them better might influence our success.”

2. Propose your own departmental “networking assignment.” Each person chooses several people outside the department that they would like to know better. Then, they invite one new person to lunch each month. Ask your manager to kick in $20 per lunch for three months.

3. Suggest a lunch party for your department and another department. Order in a few sandwiches, and make a point of networking with at least three people you don’t know well.

Whether you dine out or order in, you will have gone outside your circle of work friends and strengthened your internal network over sandwiches.

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