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Getting to know the 'right' people is key to getting the right salary

Key Points
  • Talking about your pay in the workplace is sometimes seen as taboo, but not always
  • Be clear, direct and honest about your strengths, as well as challenges and how you intend to overcome them
  • Set up monthly or quarterly meetings with your supervisor. Get time on the calendar to let your boss know what you're working on.
Caiaimage/Tom Merton | Caiaimage | Getty Images

The people you know — and what they know about you — can be the key to landing a job, advancing in the workplace and getting paid what you are worth.

Talking about your pay in the workplace is sometimes seen as taboo, but not always. There are ways to discuss who you are and what you should be earning with the "right" people. Here are three tips for approaching that "money talk."

Be open and approachable with peers

Your colleagues want to know who you are and why you do what you do. Yet you don't have to overshare or gossip.

This is especially important for those just starting out in their careers to remember because relationships can follow you everywhere, said career expert Caroline Ceniza-Levine, co-founder of SixFigureStart.

"The thing people forget is communication is a two-way street," she said, "and what feels comfortable to you is not what everyone around you is comfortable with or prefers."

Be clear, direct and honest about your strengths, as well as challenges and how you intend to overcome them.

Your peers are more likely to share their own experiences — including, perhaps, what they have earned — if they trust that you will do the same with them.

Build and grow your professional network

Peers that you collaborate with at your organization as well as associates at your professional level in other companies can be great resources.

Where you live and work may also factor into how robust the opportunities are for networking, according to a survey released earlier this year by tech resource site Tech.co.

Using the most networking events, best average salaries, and a few others factors, tech mecca San Francisco topped that list.

Every time you don't play well with others and your boss has to apologize for you, explain your behavior, or advocate for you, you are depleting it.
Suzy Welch
career expert

Also, network with a purpose. You want to identify and build trust with peers and leaders who are high achievers and have a good reputation. Get together regularly, one on one or in small groups, to talk about negotiating pay raises and perks.

Be proactive in your relationship with your boss

Set up monthly or quarterly meetings with your supervisor. Don't wait for your boss to reach out to you. Get time on the calendar to let your boss know what you're working on.

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Use those regular meetings to find out what he or she expects of you and thinks of the job that you're doing. Your boss is likely busy juggling a lot of competing interests, so make sure you're high on that list, especially when the time comes to negotiate for higher pay or more perks.

Also, consider how your actions within the organization may reflect on your boss, says career expert and CNBC contributor Suzy Welch.

"Your boss has a certain amount of goodwill in the organization," she recently told CNBC Make It. "Every time you don't play well with others and your boss has to apologize for you, explain your behavior, or advocate for you, you are depleting it."

The bottom line

Building productive relationships is critical in any new position. And it's important to maintain and grow your professional ties throughout your career. Knowing the right people can help make sure you're getting paid right.

CNBC Senior Personal Finance Correspondent Sharon Epperson has been an adjunct professor teaching professional development courses at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs for more than a decade.

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Disclosure: NBCUniversal and Comcast Ventures are investors in Acorns.