In business, it’s not always what you know, but who. Knowing the right people can land you informational interviews, resume reviews, and exclusive job postings. Not having an established network in a field can put you at an immediate disadvantage. Two places you can look to build a network are your college and past employers. Both maintain strong alumni networks to serve their own goals. 

For colleges, alumni networks are key resources for fundraising. For corporations, alumni networks drive referrals, increase sales, and connect mentors to mentees. 98% of Fortune 500 Companies have some form of alumni program. After all, businesses that actively engage with alumni see up to a 44% increase in net new business. Engaged alumni also boost brand sentiment and employer attractiveness by considerable margins. 

Even less established businesses benefit from alumni networks. In a study of venture capital, founders and investors were connected by their alma mater in ⅓ of the investments. Founders’ connections to early-stage investors through shared education matter more than school quality and shared geography.

To leverage your own alumni network, make sure to keep your alumni magazine updated on startup launches, job searches, and career changes. Volunteer for alumni events when possible.

The Power of Influence Networks
Infographic provided by: