1. Join After-work Happy Hours. Often we think of happy hour as being for the young, singles who don't have family responsibilities. The older we get the more it feels like a waste of time. But don't ignore it completely. Good idea to join occasionally so people get to know you in an informal setting.
2. Go Back to School. Take a course or even a seminar to expand your knowledge base. When you take a night class or a Saturday class, most likely the other students are business professionals like you. So get to know them. For example, executive MBA programs often create life-long professional networks which can truly enhance your career. And of course as they say knowledge is power.
3. Get Involved in Your Industry. What ever industry you are in -- there is some sort of professional association. Get involved on the local -- even national level. Know what's going on in your business -- the trends, new technologies, etc. But also, once again it's about building your network. And people will see you as a leader.
4. Volunteer. Choose a charity or community effort and volunteer. Encourage your co-workers to do the same. Most non-profit organizations have boards made up of business leaders. It's a good way to meet people, but also to demonstrate your strengths.
5. Join a Fitness Club. Getting in shape and staying healthy is just good business sense. But it's also a chance to network with other professionals who understand the importance of how a fit mind and body increases productivity and your ability to succeed.