To read the first part of this series, click here.

In the second entry of this series, The Art of the Deal, I would like to discuss the concept of “Networking” as a negotiation tool.

Having discussed at length the vital actions to be taken at the “Introduction” – let’s be clear as to what I mean when we discuss networking. I am NOT talking about networking in a traditional sense e.g. business acquaintances, new business…but rather an entirely different type of networking altogether.

When discussing the topic of networking as it relates to your specific recruitment, it can be summed up best by the following statement: “Sending a message”. The idea, at EVERY step of the recruitment process, to get the best and most favorable terms on any deal, is to consistently send a message of quality, quantity and professionalism at every turn. Sending this message through the right channels in your practice’s universe is an immensely important step. So let’s get to it already!

There are two specific groups of people that can effectively carry a message on your behalf through indirect means. Former colleagues and wholesalers. Everyone in this business has former colleagues at firms they may be negotiating with, as well as wholesalers that they have formed a friendly relationship with at some point. Both of these groups can play a vital role in backing up the strength of your showing at the Introduction point of the recruiting process.

1. Former colleagues – not only do former colleagues serve to provide an inside and unfiltered look at a firm you may be looking at – but they can also serve as a conduit of information to management as a “second source” as to the seriousness and competitiveness of you or your teams recruitment.

2. Wholesalers – as well known carriers of information beneath the surface at office’s in your particular geography, it is a regular occurrence for you to hear “rumors” from wholesalers. Use this phenomenon to your advantage. With a wink and a smile allow your favorite wholesaler to know that you are looking around.

Clearly, coming at a recruitment with the purposes of controlling that conversation will take a little bit of effort on you and your teams part. But that being said, think of what waits on the other side : culture, clients and cash. A culture that makes sense for your legacy, a platform and products upgrade for clients and a sizeable cash component commensurate with the value of your practice. Seems like a small price to pay for a “wink and a smile.”

To read the first part of this series, click here.

Andrew Parish is the CEO and founder of AdvisorHUB and managing director of Axiom Consulting.