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I recently read an article about career strategies, and it inspired today’s post. I took some time to reflect on my day to day and the relationship dynamics I’ve seen in my line of work.

One such observation frequently happens to executives: As professionals scale the corporate ladder, their schedules quickly become booked and they begin to detach from external networking and developing relationships with the recruiters in their market. However, there can be a sudden shift in the marketplace and roles are eliminated. Now these executives are scrambling for an option. Unfortunately, while hindsight is 20/20, the reactive over proactive approach is not the best way to protect yourself from a career setback.

The winning strategy for resourceful executives is to keep relationships with recruiters fresh. As a trusted advisor, a good recruiter in your network may know of hidden career opportunities, proactively keep you updated to the best talent, share salary data, or provide the latest news about your competitors. Maintaining open and active communication with recruiters can pay big dividends. The Chinese have captured such a phrase, it’s called guanxi. I learned about guanxi during an educational course on international business. What guanxi means is those who are members of your network are mutually bound for mutual advantage. It’s a fundamental tenant in Asian cultures whereby people become trusted advisors through mutually beneficial exchanges of information, favors and other forms of value. It’s a mantra I live by.

In other words, don’t close the door to someone who could be a trusted advisor, they might just have an amazing new role for you or the next best candidate for a job you really need for your firm.

As you follow your path to success, set new goals, promote your personal brand, and collaborate with individuals within and outside your organization, keep guanxi in mind.

If it’s been some time since you’ve thought about your personal career, it’s time to be proactive! Contact me for a confidential career discussion. Through the discovery process we can go over how to keep your career fresh, creative, and innovative.