The Hairy Arm Technique

We've all been in the situation where we feel a boss, co-worker, client or team member is being overly critical or nit-picky about our work.

It can be demoralizing, even infuriating. "I do good work," we say to ourselves. "Why can't this jerk just give me a little space?"

It may be that our work needs the extra QA. It's worth a little self-examination to make sure that's not the case.

And if that self-examination bears scrutiny, then it might be that your boss/client/co-worker simply needs to feel involved and validated. That their input is being sought, respected, and included - even when there's nothing "real" to criticize.

In that case, it's time for the "Hairy Arm" technique.

The Hairy ArmThe "Hair Arm Technique" came about (so the story goes) when a graphic designer who felt nit-picked to death by a client sent said client a "final" draft which was perfect except for one major detail. In one corner of the image, he'd included an "inadvertent" shot of his hairy right arm in the graphic.

The client naturally growled about the ridiculous flaw. The designer apologized and asked, "I'll take care of that right away. But aside from that - are we good to go?" The client said, yes, but JEEZ, get rid of that stupid hairy arm.

Saved the designer untold hours of agony and unnecessary changes.

We offer this not as a panacea, but simply as another tool in your teamwork toolbag.

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