Success almost always requires putting yourself into new situations. To further your career, you must take new jobs, join new organizations, transfer to new office locations, and meet and build relationships with new customers, suppliers, and industry peers.
Executives get a lot of advice about how to manage such scenarios: A new hire should negotiate his goals and responsibilities up front. A newly promoted leader must build credibility and influence with early wins. A relocated expatriate should study her new country and its culture. Novice conference attendees hoping to do some networking should arrive with a list of target contacts in mind.