Networking is very important in the animation industry. It takes some time to start getting a solid group of folks in your rolodex who you can rely on, and who in turn will rely on you. I’ve gotten to know so many amazing people in this business, and I have a core group of contacts (who are also really good friends). We help each other find work and connect with other folks. You have to be out there working to get your “list” going, and obviously you’ll increase the number of people you know as you work at different studios.
It’s a very small industry, so you also have to take care to be respectful of your peers as well. Negativity can get talked about very easily, and can affect your potential employability. So don’t do underhanded things to work colleagues! It will come back to bite you in the butt eventually!