. ruptime.com

Healthy systems, healthy organizations.

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Q: What does "ruptime" mean?

A: ruptime is a command found on some versions of the UNIX operation system. It is a way to check on the health of a system from the outside by going temporarily in and using the tools and resources available inside the system. And that's what we do.

Q: Who came up with the weird name?

A: Raymond Lockley, who is the ruptime.com principal and founder.

Q: What is your approach to organizations?

A: Systems, systems, systems.

Q: Can you be more specific?

A: If you've read any of the work by Peter Senge or Meg Wheatley, you have a good idea of where we're coming from. For a more in-depth look at the intellectual basis of our thinking, check out the reading list below.

Q: Where are you located?

A: On the Internet.

Q: No, really.

A: Really. We are strictly virtual. Ruptime's principal, Raymond, happens to be located in Silicon Valley, and is a 5th generation Westerner; but not everyone in the Ruptime community is necessarily in the Bay Area. Like Buckaroo Banzai said, "Wherever you go, there you are."

Q: Why do you talk about a "Ruptime community"?

A: Because the ruptime.com site is intended to be a virtual nexus of professionals who come together in community--with some common values about systems, organizations, and clients--to support each other and provide helpful insights and assistance to organizations that are making a difference. So, "ruptime.com" means the site, and "Ruptime community" means the consultants. For a little more along these lines, click on About Us.

Q: What are your rates?

A: How much do you have?

Q: No, really.

A: Initial consultations are always free, because why would you pay us if we haven't told you we can help? A full consultation is very affordable; but lengthy documents and pie charts to convince governing boards to act are outlandishly expensive. Individual consultants set their own rates. Some may work pro bono or at a reduced rate. Our executive consultants generally offer services for somewhere between $60 and $125 per hour, depending on experience. But if you're a small business or public benefit organization, don't let rates stop you from talking to us--everything is negotiable.

Q: Why do you charge extra for a typical consultant's report?

A: Organizations are about relationships, and people in organizations follow leaders they know and trust, not charts. Once you understand the right questions and where to find the answers, you'll know better than we will how to market your changes internally. And, frankly, those long reports that few people read all the way through are mostly boring to write, too, and we have better things to do with our lives.

Q: Do you consult with non-profits?

A: We love non-profits! More often than not, non-profits want to have intentionality in their organizations, and are able to avoid the trap which public corporations fall into, in that they are allowed to form in order to make a profit rather than to serve the public interest. Also, we understand that the ones we'd be interested in working with probably can't afford us, so we deeply discount our services to non-profits who mission out to serve their community.

Q: Aren't consultants mostly weasels?

A: Real, professional consultants are mostly good folks. We adhere to the highest ethical standards, such as the IEEE Code of Ethics.

Q: Do you have any technical specialties?

A: While we focus on people and teams, and what technology would be most effective for people and teams, we do a limited amount of purely technical consulting. We do Unixy sys admin work, with emphasis on Linux and Solaris. We do database application design, but we only really want to do coding in the Progress 4GL ("the best RDBMS on the 3rd planet from the Sun"); our experience with Progress ranges from V5 to V8 on Wintel, Solaris, and AIX.


If you want to get on the same page, Raymond recommends reading these pages:

The Fifth Discipline by Peter Senge

Leadership and the New Science by Margaret Wheatley

The Postmodern Organization by William Bergquist

Organizational Culture and Leadership by Edgar Schein

Built to Last by Collins and Porras

Stewardship by Peter Block

The Wisdom of Teams by Katzenbach and Smith

How Come Every Time I Get Stabbed in the Back My Fingerprints Are on the Knife? by Jerry Harvey

The Addictive Organization by Schaef and Fassel

Generation to Generation by Edwin Friedman

Outlearning the Wolves by David Hutchens

The Dilbert Principle by Scott Adams

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