Jugaad- the art of frugal innovation is almost a matter of pride for most Indians. The amount of ingenuity and creativity a true jugaad entails is oft awe inspiring.
In a nation like India, where people are many and resources are limited, we seem innately adept at stretching out what little we may have to make the most of it, making jugaad a way of life.
As much as we’d like to think otherwise, jugaad isn’t characteristically desi. Every culture has exhibited this art in their own unique way. The Afrikaans language has a popular adage, ‘n boer maak n plan‘ which roughly translates to ‘a farmer will always have a plan’. Some of the greatest innovations across the world have been an effort to make the lives of people easier, be it a mechanical thresher or an iPad stand. These innovations are more often than not simple and seemingly unassuming rather than being grand. Oneafrikan.com reported of a shopkeeper who shaved his Labrador to the likeness of a lion to keep burglars at bay.
Source: the interweb thingy
As Harvard business review puts it, Frugal innovation is not just about doing more with less but about doing better with less.
We, at startup safari believe that jugaad embodies the true spirit of entrepreneurship, the ability to identify the need of the hour and formulate the best possible solution to satisfy it.
Take the inventor of Mitticool as an example; Mansukhbhai Prajapathi took inspiration from pictures of broken kitchen appliances from post earthquake stricken Gujarat and created a refrigerator that runs without power or any other form of artificial energy. His cost effective, eco friendly and hard wearing invention has had revolutionary implications for rural India.
The secret to any successful entrepreneur is their unencumbered desire to make their idea a reality. Rajat Suri, CEO, E La Carte in his interview with inc. talked about how one needs to have an almost mad commitment to their project if they hope to see any success. One needs to live and breathe their business and be ready to go to the ends of the world for it. Jugaad is about getting the job done, come hell or high water. It’s about resilience, passion, and creativity. It’s the ability to see things in a novel way and to mould resources at hand to make something out of nothing.
If you would like to experience the magic of Indian entrepreneurial Jugaad, check out our programs at StartupSafari.org