Goldratt's "Theory of Constraints" would be easy to forget if presented in a more academic format, but watching it work makes it hard to forget.
Book Review – The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement by Eliyahu M. Goldratt
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And you are unproductive if your activities are taking you away from your goal. We do not need more brain power says Goldratt, what we need more of is the ability to think logically and precisely about what we see. This reminds me of the story of a man called Adam who was out fishing with his friend. Every time Adam caught a fish, he would measure its length against a pre cut piece of wood he held in his bag.
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Any fish that was longer than the slick, would get thrown back into the river. Any fish smaller than the stick would be thrown into a bag to take home to his wife. He had no answer other than thats how I have been doing it for years.
On getting home, Adam asked his wife Jenny why she liked to cook only the small fish and not the big ones. Jenny picked up the phone and rang nanny. The assumptions we work and live by may have been true many years ago, but do they remain true today? In a set of processes, or chain, the overall productivity is limited by the capacity of the weakest link. You can't afford to waste time within the bottleneck.
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Most people are so focused on technical details that they can't see the bigger picture. Rule 2: Activating a resource and utilizing are source aren't synonymous. A system with local maximums is not an efficient system. You should not try to maximize the productivity of every moment because it's not an optimally designed system. The goal is not to reduce cost, but to increase throughput.
This has huge implications because nearly everyone is focused on reducing costs. The Theory of Constraints: Step one: identify the systems constraints. Step two: decide how to exploit the constraints.
Step three: subordinate all other processes to the above decisions. Step four: elevate and improve the systems constraints.
Step five: if in a previous step a constraint has broken, return to step one. T hanks for reading. You helped save a life.