We love working with strong-willed people. "Butting heads" is a good thing, so long as their hearts are in the right place.
We believe that it takes courage to move forward. The philosopher Paul Tillich says that courage is the affirmation of one's own essential nature "in spite of" everything that would deny it. Progress must always be made "in spite of" everything that would deny it.
We believe in being frugal, with our own money as well as yours. Controlling cost is the only way to be profitable in any business. It is a mindset and an approach that stands the test of time.
We like getting dirty. We love working in the trenches. We do not just stay in conference rooms surrounded by white boards and Keurig machines. We also work alongside your people, on the front lines.
Putting Business First
We believe in "business over technology", which means that we value return on investment for the business more than we value cool technology (although we really like cool technology, too).
We believe in staying focused. Becoming distracted is probably the single biggest obstacle to progress. Once priorities are defined, everyone must stay hyper-focused on the objective until it is met.
We do not mind frustration. Computers are complicated. People are complicated. People using computers can be very complicated. We understand. We will get through it.
We love to play chess and study the game intensely. We apply lessons learned there to our client's goals, applying strategy and tactics to everything we do.
We were advocating Agile Methodologies long before they had a name. For us, it all boils down to the fact that IT systems are living organisms that respond to the laws of Complexity Theory, not physical structures that respond to Newtonian Physics. Our favorite book on the subject is Agile Software Development Ecosystems by Jim Highsmith (ISBN 0-201-76043-6).
Complex systems are easy to create. Simple systems are difficult to create. We constantly strive for simplicity in everything we do.
Making Changes Incrementally
We value incremental improvements over "big bang" system changes and implementations. Incremental improvements are more effective, less expensive, less disruptive, lower-risk, and more fun. Big bang implementations are almost always avoidable.
Being Manageable and Accountable
We believe that it is important to be both manageable and accountable. We welcome direction, accept correction, and take responsibility for our actions.
Writing Good Contracts
We enjoy negotiating terms and writing contracts. It is an important part of what we do. Good contracts keep people happy on both sides.
We are very organized. We are somewhat compulsive about it, but only where it matters. Organization is the best way to tame complexity.
We believe in maximizing a person's strengths and mitigating their weaknesses (instead of trying to fix their weaknesses) as advocated by the writer Marcus Buckingham.
We believe in mitigating risk to the extent possible. We do not take unnecessary risks, and we are constantly seeking ways to maintain stability.
Being Good Neighbors
We take a friendly neighborhood approach to enterprise-level information technology. We have a high degree of experience and expertise, but we do not work from some high-rise office tower in New York City. We are down-to-earth. We will come to you.
Einstein said "Everything should be made to be as simple as possible, but no simpler." In other words, if one goes too far in making something simple, it loses its essence and becomes ineffective. We are constantly pushing this boundary in our search for simplicity.
Creating Elegant Designs
We value elegant design. We constantly seek to develop solutions that not only serve, but inspire.
Systems are delicate. Working on them requires a deft hand. We believe that change must be precise.
Leading from the Trenches
We are students of Robert K. Greenleaf, the modern father of "Servant Leadership" who was born in 1904 and whose writings shaped countless future management theorists, including Peter Drucker. Greenleaf's philosophy has its roots in a novel by Hermann Hesse called "Journey to the East".
We also believe in Jesus, and strive to treat others as we would want to be treated ourselves.