MERAKI in Greek means “Doing something with a sense of PRIDE and CARE”. In English it could be loosely translated as the LABOUR of LOVE we see from certain craftsmen, artists, chefs or creatives in their pieces of work. Common online definition for the word MERAKI is: “The soul, creativity, or love put into something; the essence of yourself that is put into your work”.
Why am I sharing this? I have worked with clients who openly declare that they do not care for how much their job pays. Money is simply an exchange of value. People care about what they put INTO their work, as much as what they get OUT of it. Our work gives us a sense of IDENTITY & PURPOSE. If people therefore, do not feel they can influence or leave a stamp of their own onto their work, they will struggle to resonate with it – their work will be DEVOID of MEANING.
Now think about this for a moment. Humans are inherently creative, we are not machines. We have a unique way of EXPRESSING, INTERPRETING, RELATING. If we deny humanity of these abilities, or even worse, do not recognise them at work… then we deny them SIGNIFICANCE, which is a basic human need. Work has to be humane. When we design work & when we lead teams we can KEEP the need for MERAKI at the forefront of our HR agenda. Without MERAKI there is no meaning left in our work.
Where / when was the last time you experienced MERAKI at work?
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