Small businesses, non-profits, and other groups who don't have massive budgets often face a major obstacle in solving problems: they need some help, but they only need a bit. Most consulting firms aren't interested in working on projects that only amount to a few hours here and there, and their rates can take your breath away. Have Brain, Will Travel is different. Whether you need months of assistance, or just a long, well-planned lunch meeting, you'll get the help you need, and the respect you deserve, at a price you can afford.
The Have Brain, Will Travel Pledge
- I will help you.
- Whether it's just pointing you in the right direction, helping you plan your journey from start to finish, or taking you all the way to where you want to go, I will leave you better off than than when we started.
- I will respect you.
- If you ask for my help, I will treat your problems seriously, and you as a human being.
- I will charge you fairly.
- You will know what you are paying for, and how much it will cost, and it will be a price you can afford.
Who I Am
My name is David A. Spitzley, and for over 15 years I've made a living developing database and web applications, a task which has allowed me to develop not only the obvious technical skills, but a talent for helping groups of people map out their work processes and determine how to get from where they are to where they want to be. More formally, I have a Ph.D. in Economics and Masters in Public Administration, which in combination grants me a wide range of analytical and organization knowledge and experience. I have also served in elected leadership roles in my community and in political organizations for many years, and am experienced in guiding group activity as well as working with individuals.
I can help you solve a range of problems, whether by addressing them directly myself, or by working with you to give you the tools you need to solve them yourself. Examples include:
- Help you brainstorm solutions to problems which have you stymied, and even assist you in concretely defining what those problems are
- Develop new processes and procedures to deal with the obstacles you face
- Clarify, refine and document your existing processes to make them more effective
- Research anything from regulations to academic writings to give you a better understanding of your circumstances
- Identify technology resources you need on an ongoing basis, including hardware, software and services as appropriate
- Consolidate, organize, analyze and summarize the data you collect but can't take advantage of
- Create software tools to help you organize and manage information and support your daily activity
- Teach computer skills, academic subjects, creative thinking, or a variety of other topics
- Provide general advice, guidance and encouragement
Beyond those services I can provide myself, I have a broad personal network, and can call on it to obtain assistance for you with almost anything you can think of, including:
- Graphic Design
- Grant Writing
- Legal Services
- Product Development
- Real Estate Services
- Art Restoration
- Costume Design
- Electrical Engineering
I've done many things over the years, and can bring that experience to bear on your needs:
- Spent 15 years developing database and spreadsheet tools for use by state and local school district personnel
- Created enhancements to Detroit's Sugar Law Center for Economic & Social Justice staff time tracking processes
- Designed and developed tools used by the Ferndale Friends newspaper to organize their editorial and publishing cycle
- Rebutted conclusions by government agencies and Michigan's Mackinac Center about educational efficiency and performance through statistical analysis of personnel and testing data
- Guided groups of dozens of people in development of documents and policies, both in person and online
- Helped plan major events held by the Center for Community Based Enterprise (as well as serving on their Executive Board)
- Assisted in the creation of online businesses and research websites, on both the technical side and the creative side
- Created a variety of different things, ranging from t-shirts to boardgames
In addition, I regularly teach myself new skills, ranging from computer languages to home appliance repair, so I am open to tackling problems which are completely new to me.
Prices and Billing
I am extremely flexible with regard to billing cycles, payment methods and other minutiae, but here are a few standards I adhere to:
- All billing will include an itemized list of services provided, in 15-minute increments, along with any expenses. You'll always know what you're paying for.
- Expenses will be billed at cost, and will be cleared in advance if they total more than a single billable hour (and usually even then).
- My basic rate is $100 per hour, but I offer significant discounts for non-profits, locally-anchored or employee-owned businesses, Detroit community development efforts, anything I find personally interesting, and anything odd enough to make a good story. If you think I can help you, we will work out a price you can afford.
- I work above-the-table, and pay taxes on all payments I receive.
I hope you can see possibilities for how I can help you achieve your goals, and I look forward to discussing your needs with you. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at (734) 612-6763