I’m usually skeptical when local habits become emerging trends and are subsequently declared a new global management paradigm, but in the case of the much buzzed-about Jugaad I am inclined to follow the gurus.The trend began with Reena Jana’s seminal article in BusinessWeek in December 2009 (full disclosure: Reena is a consulting editor at frog, a company of he Aricent Group), in which she critically investigated the value of Jugaad and anticipated its entering the lexicon of management consultants. The term Jugaad (pronounced “joo-gaardh”) is a colloquial Hindi word that describes a creative ad hoc solution to a vexing issue, making existing things work and/or creating new things with scarce resources. Although sometimes used pejoratively (in the sense of a makeshift cheap fix), it is now widely accepted as a noun to describe Indian-style innovation (some also call it “indovation”) – describing the inventiveness of Indian grassroots engineers and scientists that have led to the pedal-powered washing machine, inspired the extra-low-cost Tata Nano car, or the success of India’s space program. It is, in short, the art of holistic (and therefore lateral) thinking, of unbound, resilient creativity, and of improvisation and rapid prototyping under severe constraints.

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Traditionally, telcos have sold “communication” as the application over an underlying “connectivity” capability. However, the advent of an all-IP telecom network has forced the telcos to open up their “connectivity” capability. Today, they sell both “connectivity” as well as “communication.” But, the market has been smart enough to quickly commoditize the telcos’ “connectivity” service, and today, connectivity has become the commoditized infrastructure for a buzzing marketplace camped on the Cloud (and the Internet in general).

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Failure is all the rage these days. Recently, from Harvard Business Review alone, we have David Simms talking about the power of positive failure (and Scott Anthony's response), and the excellent series on lessons from the military often touches on the topic.

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