ProfessionThese people have the greatest impact on careers

A team meeting at work.
Friend or foe? Colleagues have a significant impact on Germans’ careers. Pixabay

What was the most important person in your career? The LinkedIn career network asked this interesting question to employees in Germany. In the majority, it was up to five people who had a significant influence on career choice, career change or further development. The 2018 survey shows how often a student internship can determine the career choice. But it also makes clear that many Germans prefer their competitors to their mentors.

The most important “career influencers”

The polling institute Censuswide surveyed workers in Germany on behalf of Linkedin 2004. About one in three could not attribute the career path to a single person. The rest called these people “career influencers”:

  • Supervisor during the internship: 13 percent
  • Teacher: 12 percent
  • first boss: 12 percent
  • current or previous supervisors: 12 percent
  • Colleagues: 7 percent
  • Mentors: 3 percent

The poor performance of mentors is probably due to the fact that this concept is hardly widespread in Germany. 25 percent of those surveyed have a “cheerleader” or mentor in the workplace who actively promotes their career. According to LinkedIn, this is the lowest value in all countries examined. The German workers counter the lack of healthy competition.

Competition stimulates careers

29 percent said they had a rival at work with whom they saw themselves in direct competition. The vast majority see this positively and think that competition stimulates their careers. It encourages more success (68 percent) and harder work (36 percent). “25 percent feel driven to be promoted in front of their competitor,” LinkedIn found. Only around half of the respondents (53 percent) would rather have a mentor than a rival.

Colleagues can also help their careers in a more gentle way. Every second person has a friend or buddy at work. They help you to get through the day better (81 percent), keep stress under control (66 percent) and increase your overall confidence (61 percent). This has a direct positive impact on careers, as 56 percent of those questioned said.

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