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The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement by [Goldratt, Eliyahu M., Jeff Cox]
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The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 73 customer reviews

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Review

'A survey of the reading habits of managers found that though they buy books by the likes of Tom Peters for display purposes, the one management book they have actually read from cover to cover is The Goal.' The Economist 'Goldratt's system, in essence, forces production managers and workers alike to coordinate their work-with an underlying principle in mind: that 'bottlenecks'...are what ultimately constrain the manufacturing environment.' Business Week 'This theory provided a persuasive solution for factories struggling with production delays and low revenues.' Harvard Business Review 'Like Mrs. Fields and her cookies, The Goal was too tasty to remain obscure. Companies began buying big batches and management schools included it in their curriculums.' Fortune Magazine 'Anybody who considers himself a manager should rush out, buy and devour this book immediately. If you are the only one in your place to have read it, your progress along the path to the top may suddenly accelerate...one of the most outstanding business books I have ever encountered.' Punch Magazine 'Goal readers are now doing the best work of their lives.' Success Magazine 'The Goal has always been essential reading for those looking to eliminate bottlenecks from their business. The latest edition also shows how its ideas have been applied in real life.' Works Management ' Written in the style of a novel it treats the subject of ongoing personal development in a unique way. although the scene is set in a US manufacturing company it can easily be transferred to your business. You will learn as you read this story, recognizing the changes you need to make as you progress. Definitely a book to read...' The Hairdresser

About the Author

Eliyahu M. Goldratt is an internationally recognized leader in the development of new business management concepts and systems, and acts as an educator to many of the world's corporations.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2484 KB
  • Print Length: 362 pages
  • Publisher: North River Press; 30th Anniversary Edition edition (1 July 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002LHRM2O
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 73 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #17,023 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 23 Aug. 2007
Format: Paperback
This novel succeeds in being outstanding at so many levels that it could receive a multiple of five stars. It is hard to imagine a management book in novel form ever approaching this one in usefulness. Most people will learn more that they can apply from this book about management than many people learn to apply from an M.B.A.

The basic story is built around the dilemmas facing Alex Rogo, a newly-appointed plant manager. The plant can't seem to ship, it's losing money, and bad things can happen to good people if all this doesn't change soon. Alex is at a loss for what to do until he pulls out a cigar that Jonah, a physicist from Israel, had recently given him. That cigar reminds him to contact Jonah for possible help. From there, the path to recovery begins.

Let me describe some of the many levels on which this novel is valuable.

First, the book explains how to see businesses as systems as well as any other book on this subject. It compares favorably in this area to such important works as The Fifth Discipline and the Fifth Discipline Handbook. The metaphor of how to speed up a slow-moving group of boy scouts will be visceral to anyone who has done any hiking with a group.

Second, the book helps you learn how to improve the performance of a system by providing you with a replicable process that you can apply to analyzing any human or engineering system. The primary metaphor is improving a manufacturing process, but the same principles apply more broadly to other circumstances.

Third, you will experience the power of the Socratic method as a way to stimulate your mind to learn, and to use Socratic questions to stimulate the minds of others to become better thinkers and doers.
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Format: Paperback
Everyone can spot a myriad of problems within any business and in too many cases people try tackling all of them. This amounts to a huge game of 'whack a rat', that circus game where plastic rodents appear out of holes and you bash them with a big rubber hammer to make them go away. Only each time you get rid of one rat, or problem, another appears from a different hole and before long there are loads of problems springing up all over the place. You end up running round in circles trying to fix a never ending growing list of problems. Sound familiar?

The Goal is a business novel set at a manufacturing plant. Don't let this put you off if you're in a business or department that doesn't manufacturing! The physical nature of the problems described in the book helps you to visualise the core message that Goldratt's putting across: The Theory of Constraints (TOC) in which any system can be viewed as a 'chain' and somewhere in that chain is a weak link that limits the throughput of the entire system. Using TOC to correctly identify the weak link, or 'constraint', is a vital first step to solving a multitude of problems. The book goes on to explain how to work with the constraint from a holistic perspective enabling you to focus your activities where they will have the highest possible beneficial impact on your business for the least amount of effort. In other words, TOC tells you which rat to whack!

I've now encountered a few people who've read this book and somehow come away with the impression that it's telling you to focus on local optima -this is certainly not the case. If, after reading the book, you have this view then I'd highly recommend reading The Logical Thinking Process by Dettmer.

TOC in itself is obvious - once you understand it.
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The use of a fictional story to bring to life a management theory is a neat one, but the characters and dialogue are all pretty basic at best, and often slow moving even cumbersome. It's more interesting to read than a textbook on management theory would be, but not as convenient a reference source nor as enjoyable as a good novel would be.

So you have to battle through some fairly creaky plotting and speaking as the main protagonist, Alex Rogo, tries to turn around a factory and rescue his marriage at the same time.

However, the theory of constraints which Goldratt lays out in the book should be rescued from its means of communication as it is an important one, widely applicable in business and has propelled the book to its multi-million selling status.
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There aren't too many 'interesting' management books out there. This one is. By creating characters in a manufacturing plant and putting them in a story, that I'm sure we can all relate to, the author has produced a bit of a masterpiece. It is an old book - written before mobile phones and computers ran the world - so some predicaments are no longer valid. Also, it may teach you to suck eggs in places and some of the situations are a little too contrived.

But, on the whole, an excellent management book. A real page-turner.
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I arrived to this book reading the bibliography of "the phoenix project".
It has been an amazing mental trip and an extreme useful exercise.
Suggested reading 'it's not luck' which is the follow up of 'the goal'
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