Two years ago, my chicken salad got more awesome after reading the way Kenny Shopsin made his:
The key is rubbing the mayo into the chicken with your fingers. This gets the mayo into all the nooks and crannies of the meat, giving you delectable chicken-mayo bites in your sandwich, rather than a spread that is alternatively wet (loose mayo) and dry (white chicken meat where interior has not been touched by the mayo).
I recently started using the approach for my granola, and the results have been good. Rather than just mix up the oats, sugar, and fat with a spoon, I've been heating the fat and the sugar together in a pan, then mixing the liquid with the oats (and a little salt) in a bowl by hand until everything achieves a uniformly coated/saturated consistency. I think if I needed to make a lot (i.e. for the stand), I would use one of the mixers at the bakery to get the same consistency.