“Jugaad is a colloquial Hindi, Bengali, Marathi जुगाड, Punjabi and Urdu word, which has various meanings depending on the context it is used in.
Roughly translated, Jugaad is a non-conventional, frugal innovation, often termed as “hack.” It could also refer to an innovative fix or a simple work-around, a solution that bends the rules, or a resource that can be used in such a way.” (Wikipedia)
Our supply chain manager, Sonia, introduced us to this term a few weeks ago when due to a misprint in our design, one of our blocks (a semi-circle) was carved at a diameter of fourteen inches, rather than eleven. (Below you can see our baffled printer realizing he’s run out of room for the remainder of the design in the first image.)
Sonia and the printer tapped into the spirit of jugaad to both improvise on the original design, and to recreate it by using a smaller full circle block partially covered by newspaper.
Ironically, this design is titled Change Your Mind and is supposed to embody a sense of flexibility, flow and playfulness.
We’re grateful for the collaboration and fusion that take place at so many levels through this process—our interpersonal relationships, our problem solving, and of course, our gorgeous designs.
Slowly, jugaad is becoming the spirit animal of our start-up, and inspiring us to undertake our mission of creating a smaller, stranger world with grit, resourcefulness and imagination.
When our trip to India recently was cancelled due to growing fears around the Corona virus pandemic, it was jugaad that helped us pivot and find new ways to strengthen our vendor relationships and capture footage of the craftsmanship in action.
As a small business, we’ll have many opportunities to practice this, and know that the deep wisdom of jugaad is the awareness that all of us have within us an innate capacity for transforming our challenges into our triumphs.