Making and Work
I describe myself as a Maker, for me the term is a indicator of where my inspiration and satisfaction are found. This has generally been realised in the workshop making objects with wood and more recently clay. Its harder to find in the work I do as a Solution and Enterprise architect. Aspects are definitely present, as myself or my team are generally involved with a larger to team to create and implement a new software capability. However as I have moved more into management it has been becoming a more distant aspect of daily work life.
I think this is part of why I am attracted to the web design world and the app builders. I started my career as a programmer and still regard this as a core skill however it doesn’t feature in my professional life a great deal.
Matt Gemmell wrote about Makers and Takers in a typically strong fashion a couple of years ago. Its really good piece (his blog is always a stimulating read).
People who make things, or Makers, contribute something to the universe. Makers are people like writers, musicians, artists, architects, software engineers, carpenters, and the chap at the coffee shop who makes your morning latte. He has a skill, and he applies it to create something that makes your day a little bit better.
Theres another type of person - I call these people Takers. Takers participate in the economy as money-handlers, exchanging currency on the back of others’ creations. They lend, and sell, and negotiate and manage. You can argue that these things are in themselves skills, and that’s true - but none are anything I’d aspire to… I use the services of Takers to the extent that it’s necessary, and accept the tacit crassness and unseemliness of the interaction as a cultural cost. I don’t think that it always has to, or will, be like this, but I accept it for now… Choose someone you admire or otherwise care about. Given knowledge of your motives, would they be genuinely proud of you in your work? That’s the test. What are you creating?