Usually, after a few years of working, Welch says, most people wake up and realize that likeability and teamwork matter, sometimes even more than talent.
"But why wait to have that realization?" she asks. "Start your career knowing the Favor Economy is there, and understand you're a player in it. Either you participate, which is good, or you don't, which is definitely going to hold you back."
Welch is quick to point out that the career-enhancing effect of "pay it forward" behaviors is not new, and, in fact, was thoughtfully explored in the best-selling business book "Give and Take" by Wharton professor Adam Grant.
In "Give and Take," Grant argues that authentically seeking to help others is the most effective way to build a network of people who are, in turn, willing to help you succeed. "If we create networks with the sole intention of getting something," Grant writes, "we won't succeed."
On the other hand, "the more I help out, the more successful I become," he says.