1.Give and get information
2. Be careful about rumors
3. Don’t isolate yourself
IN A NUTSHELL
The result of your being in the loop means having timely and useful information. You are part of the information system within the company. If you never seem to know what is going on, watch out! Here is what you need to do:
THE IMPORTANCE OF INFORMATION
It is important for your career to know what is going on in the company. Is there a big new contract coming up? Is the CEO leaving? Are big changes in your department under consideration? This is just a sample of what you need to know. If you are in the loop, you have a good idea of what is going on. Sometimes your boss will keep you informed, but not always.
BUILD YOUR NETWORK
Ask people from your team or others to lunch or for a coffee. Attend company sponsored social events. Go to the break room at least once in a while. Stop and chat with people on your way to your office.
STUDY THE POLITICS AND CULTURE OF THE COMPANY
Your networking should offer some good tips about the structure of the culture of the company. Look for people who always seem to have valuable information. Sit back and think about who are the people who have the CEO’s ear, who get the prize assignments, or who seem to get promoted.
DO YOUR HOMEWORK
Read the annual report of your company and any other articles that may appear in journals or other publications about your industry and your company. Find out about the background of the top people- check out their biographies. Ask yourself some questions like “Where is this company going in the future or what new products/services are being introduced?” Then ask around to see if you can get some answers.
BE CAREFUL ABOUT RUMORS
In some companies information is tightly held. Then employees may fill the vacuum with rumors. These may be false, partly true or totally true. Analyze what you hear, be skeptical and try not to forward any rumor that you suspect to be untrue.
BE AN INFORMATION GIVER
This can be a little difficult. If your job allows you to have certain confidential information, you need to honor that commitment. On the other hand, you can share information that you know to be true of a more general nature.