you can always jugaad the technology, you can never jugaad the relationships
Sophea, another frontyard janitors, told me this at our janitors getaway in April. She developed the principle or saying over many years, crystalising it with the Delhi Listening Group. “Jugaad” is a colloquial Hindi, Urdu, and Punjabi word meaning something like ‘hack’, but broader according to Sophea.
For me, this saying means: You can find and hack together material things like space and tools and make it work the last moment. But you can’t do that with relationships. They develop slowly deeply. If you have strong relationships, then people share and collaborate to make something happen.
I’ve found this to be true. It’s also an idea that has people and their well-being at it’s heart. It’s about being respectful, interested, kind and together—which are important political ideas for me.
All year I’ve had this saying posted on my laptop to remind me what’s important.