In the workplace, I have just employed a cynical tactic that I first learned on Jimmy Nail’s Crocodile Shoes. Let me explain:
Jimmy and his Agent (I think) are listening to Jimmy’s demo tape which is to be played to Rick Spangle, head of FAB Records. Jimmy’s not at all happy. “Where’s the sax break gone? It’s crying out for it!”. The Agent says he took it out on purpose – and Jimmy is perplexed – for it is obvious to him that it should be there. The Agent asks Jimmy to trust him on this one.
Later we see them playing the tape to Spangle. Spangle says it’s a good song – but he thinks there should be a sax break. The Agent initially bristles, but then pretends to consider this…and then pretends to warm to the idea…and then he gets excited – “something like (murmurs the tune of the sax break that was taken out)…?” Spangle says “Exactly!”
A bit later, the real version is played and Agent is open-mouthed in wonder.
Agent says to Spangle – “you really do know how sprinkle magic dust don’t you?”
Spangle – “what can I say? I guess I was born with this ability.”
Everyone’s excited and on board. And it was all down to a little bit of sleight of hand by the Agent.
Now I am not saying I have done anything like that. I hate sax breaks! But at work I do sometimes leave out a little bit of something, so that the other party can participate by suggesting the missing piece. And then I say “that’s a great idea” and they feel ace. As a result, the thing you want doing gets done because it’s (now) partly the other guy’s idea! I tells ya – it works like a charm.
And it’s all thanks to Jimmy Nail.