Whether you’re seeking social capital or professional success, it’s not about what you know but who you know. A network of influence utilizes the resources of both people and groups to advance everyone, resulting in a symbiotic exchange of value. Learning to make use of available networks is essential for achieving success in the increasingly interconnected world, whether you’re a student, professional, or organization.
Corporate Influence Networks
Almost all Fortune 500 corporations have some kind of alumni program because of its many benefits. Connecting with experienced professionals through networking opportunities may result in informative interviews, help with a career move, promotions, finding the best candidate for your business, and access to exclusive job posts, resume evaluations, and free resources. Alumni networks may establish a genuine community with deep bonds where members have access to mentors and business experts. Discounts on sporting events, bike rentals, gyms, museums, on-campus performances, bookshops, financial services, travel insurance, air travel, restaurants, clothes, and continuing education courses are among the other perks.
University Alumni Networks are Powerful
For various reasons, universities and businesses both invest in robust alumni networks. A 2.8-time boost in income per employee, a 4.5-time rise in product creativity, and a 6-time increase in employer attractiveness are just a few of the quantifiable advantages of investing in lasting connections. Businesses that actively interact with graduates report an increase in new business by up to 44%. Similar to engaged consumers, engaged alumni boost brand sentiment by 10% and serve as brand ambassadors who are at least five times more valuable than typical customers.
To raise money, prestigious universities like Dartmouth, Harvard, MIT, Northwestern, NYU, PennState, UPenn, Princeton, University of Michigan, West Virginia University, and others invest in alumni networks. Additionally, many powerful people have affiliations with institutions and could be ready to recommend exceptional pupils, which might lead to a wealth of professional prospects.
Objectives of Influence Networks
Corporate alumni networks at well-known organizations like Google, Coca-Cola, Microsoft, HSBC, Citibank, Accenture, Nestle, P&G, LinkedIn, McKinsey & Company, and others have a wide range of goals. These objectives include gaining access to a labor pool, encouraging recommendations or boomerang hires, fostering business growth, raising sales, establishing connections between mentors and mentees, and building a supportive environment. As one can see, corporate alumni organizations provide their parent companies with a variety of advantages, whereas higher education institutions mostly use alumni for fundraising.
When choosing which program to enroll in, business students and individuals with entrepreneurial aspirations should place high importance on the size and activity of a school’s alumni network. Entrepreneurs who attended their alma mater are more likely to get investors for their companies.
Even the strongest alumni network, though, might go to waste if someone doesn’t make the most of it. It’s a good idea to get involved in the alumni magazine’s class notes column with personal or professional updates, join committees to reconnect with classmates, share your professional knowledge at alumni events, and meet other alumni for coffee or lunch for an informal meeting to learn about additional opportunities.
Conversely, to continually engage alumni, universities and businesses must improve their network. Offering members clear benefits, meeting local and distant members’ wishes, sharing college news, and providing incentives and gifts during events are some tried-and-true methods of alumni involvement.
Infographic provided by: AcademicInfluence.com