Ok, I’m intrigued, but what do you guys actually do?
We build software: web applications, mobile web applications, iOS and Android native mobile applications, and beautiful responsive web sites. We do everything in house including brand identity, concepting, writing, design, development, and managed hosting. We specialize in those applications that require hard problems to be solved or big data to be crunched, and those web sites that require ultra-high availability, ultra-high performance, and extreme security.
Great, a lot of people do a lot of that, what makes you guys so special?
We've been doing it a long time, most of us for over 20 years. Our team has built super computing systems, the world's first ISP, organized amazing conferences, seen the world through new eyes, and painted the desert. We've also traveled most of the world and are still actively working on that. We've done a tremendous amount of teaching over the years and have contributed 1000s of libraries into the Open Source community. Our small team has started more than 15 companies and 5 startups, while combining mindfulness with money, cultivating insight around organizational strategy and documenting our journey along the way.
We don't like to brag but we are like, really, really good at the internet.
Wow, very cool. And do you have a mission?
Why, yes we do! Thanks for asking. The gist of our mission is to do exemplary, purposeful work to support joyful and engaged human lives. Read more here.
What do you mean when you say you “build partnerships”?
We form partnerships in two ways:
We work with your company to structure deals that give you reliable execution done more quickly for less up front investment in exchange for mutual upside.
We work with investment partners to provide you with our talent.
What the hell does that even mean?
We work with companies and investors that get behind our practice of using technology to make a positive impact on the world.
If your company is purpose driven we'll work with you to invest financial and engineering resources in your vision. We prefer debt, over equity financing, but we'll work with you to structure the best deal possible. We don't want to own part of your company, we want to help you reduce risk and accelerate development so you can create the biggest impact possible.
If you are an investor, or investment group, we work with you to reduce risk around your investments. We do this by helping you to vet potential investments from a technical perspective or to deliver predictable execution for your investments. Your cash will have much more leverage with our firepower and our team can let you check “execution” off of the list of risk factors on return. By combining money with execution we can ensure that the entrepreneur’s passion and energy create the biggest impact possible.
Why are you doing this? Can't you just do what you do and make piles of money instead?
Been there, done that.
We have seen the impact committed social entrepreneurs can wield through technology and deeply feel the obligation to use our skills for it's highest purpose. Besides, someone else can build the next “bookfacetweetogram” app. We believe, that by entering into mutually beneficial arrangements with the world's impact leaders, we can create trust and alignment that will bring the most efficiency and energy into our work and realize the true power of technology to change the world.
We want to build that technology.
Okay, so how would we form such a partnership?
- We find out what you need and what you want. We see if we're a good fit for helping you with that. In figuring out whether we're a good match, we consider:
- scope of your work
- your timeline
- your budget
- our resonance with your work, in terms of our technical/design expertise and in terms of its meaning & purpose
- Then we hash out the specifics of our working partnership. We work together to decide what's best for the health of the project and most conducive for collaboration. There are a bunch of options here that we offer:
- a revenue financing model
- a convertible note or similar
- a three way partnership between you, dojo4 and an investor that we help find
- or even just a simple time & materials agreement, if that's best for your type of funding
- We sign agreements outlining the terms of the relationship and the scope of the work. We become partners in the work that needs to be done.
- We work cooperatively until we accomplish what we set out to do together.
- Depending on the terms of the relationship, we engage each other for a long time or at the end of the term, we release each other back into the wild.
How do you define 'impact' and are impact enterprises the only businesses you work with?
Great question. We define impact companies as those companies that do not harm, and seek to actively help people and our environment, by providing solutions to real problems. We consider all kinds of people and factors in our analysis, including customers and employees of the company itself. Although we've worked with all kinds of organizations in the past, we've found the most meaning building technology that supports the health and happiness of people and our world, at least as much as it supports profit. That type of mission can have all kinds of manifestations. Most importantly, it's important to us that we work with organizations that are doing something that is meaningful to us. While “Halliburton” is definitely out, your company might be in. Let's have tea and talk about it!
What does it look like to work with you guys? What's your process?
Our process is somewhat malleable but always contains two invariants:
- We start by understanding the problem.
- We work relentlessly to execute them via steel thread methodology.
Our team is primarily distributed, but we're centered in Boulder, CO: UTC-7.
We never begin with solutions or add baggage to their execution. We are minimalists that aim to solve the the right problem, perfectly and completely, the first time, and to do nothing more.
For you process nerds we use a lean process, are mostly remote, and use best in class communication tools to foster a lightweight, transparent, and distributed development effort. Our team leader is always a project's surgeon. We avoid too many meetings, too much process, and anything that looks like waste.
Awesome! How can I help?
I have a question that you didn't answer.
We want to know what you want to know: would you please take a moment to ask us?
I really miss the old DOJO4.
No problem, here ya go.