Theory of Constraints and Government

Utah State CapitolDeveloped more than 30 years ago by Dr. Eliyahu M. Goldratt, the Theory of Constraints was born of the factory floor, but its principles have long since been adopted by other industry sectors, from retail to IT to DevOps. Just as it hasn’t been restricted to manufacturing, TOC hasn’t been limited to the private sector; the United States military has been leveraging critical chain project management and other TOC tools for more than a decade.

However, in recent years, TOC has begun turning up in a public sector environment not generally mentioned in discussions of efficiency or process improvement—government departments and agencies. Several U.S. states and at least one European country (Lithuania) have begun to integrate TOC with promising results. With its governor fully on board, the State of Utah has been championing the cause. Kristen Cox, Executive Director of the Utah Governor’s Office of Management and Budget, speaks internationally about the state’s success with TOC, and recently gave a featured keynote at the 2014 Theory of Constraints International Certification Organization (TOCICO) conference in Washington, D.C.

While industry website governing.com has called Utah “the poster child for constraints management,” the states of Texas and Hawaii have also reported significant improvements attributable to TOC implementation in various departments, and the Idaho Department of Labor has indicated an implementation is underway. For those interested in learning more, TOCICO has created a new Government portal on its website that features brief presentations on the topic.

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30th Anniversary edition of The Goal published

The Goal by Eli Goldratt, Theory of ConstraintsAs the exclusive publisher of books by Dr. Eliyahu M. Goldratt, North River Press is pleased to announce the release of the 30th Anniversary edition of the classic business novel, The Goal, by Dr. Goldratt and Jeff Cox.

First published in 1984, and recognized as one of the most important business books ever published, The Goal introduced Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints to the world and changed how major corporations in the United States and around the world do business. The Goal has sold more than 6 million copies, been translated into more than 27 languages and remains a staple in business schools around the world.

Thirty years after its initial publication, The Goal continues to garner top reviews and major press. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos told an CNBC interviewer last year that Goldratt’s classic was one of three titles he selected for the all-day book clubs he hosts with top Amazon executives, and that these books provided “frameworks for sketching out the future of the company.”

In 2013, Inc. magazine ran an article by Drew Greenblatt titled, “The Man Who Saved My Company.” In it, the president of the U.S. manufacturer Marlin Steel, says he only met the father of the Theory of Constraints once, but “that book—and Goldratt himself—were transformative for my company.”

In 2014, Industry Week reported on a recent study of Theory of Constraints implementations in its Continuous Improvement newsletter: “More than one-third of respondents have extensively implemented it, and more than 80% are making some use of TOC.”

Originally applied in the manufacturing sector, the Theory of Constraints has been widely adopted in many industries (see catalogue), some of which Goldratt himself wrote about and consulted in. Currently, his work is being more widely applied to the fields of healthcare, government, IT and DevOps.

The 30th Anniversary edition represents the first time the narrative in The Goal has been substantially updated. Goldratt’s Five Focusing Steps have been added, and his essay, “Standing on the Shoulders of Giants,” is included. The Fortune Small Business interviews (known by some as the “case studies”) that appeared in the 20th and 25th Anniversary editions have been removed from the book, but are available on this website.

For regular updates and resources on TOC, follow us (@GoldrattBooks) on Facebook and Twitter.


Theory of Constraints and Healthcare

Theory of Constraints and Healthcare

The topic of TOC and Healthcare took center stage at the TOCICO International Conference in Washington, D.C. earlier this month, nearly a decade after the publication of We All Fall Down: Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints for Healthcare Systems, a business novel by Julie Wright and Russ King. The conference opened with the keynote, Improving Global Healthcare with the Theory of Constraints, by Alex Knight, a leading TOC practitioner in the field and founding partner of QFI Consulting, and was followed by workshops and a full day of presentations dedicated to the theme.



New TOC Title on Management Philosophy

Goldratt Theory of Constraints by Yishai AshlagNorth River Press, the exclusive U.S. publisher of books by Dr. Eliyahu M. Goldratt, is pleased to announce the publication of TOC Thinking: Removing Constraints for Business Growth by Yishai Ashlag.

Dr. Goldratt is known worldwide as the father of the Theory of Constraints (TOC), a philosophy he first introduced in his bestselling book, The Goal, in 1984, and expanded upon in subsequent titles. He died in 2011. Ashlag worked closely with Goldratt, who was also his father-in-law.

Why a book about management philosophy?



IndustryWeek “Best Plants” Use TOC

Theory of Constraints Deployment“More than one-third of respondents have extensively implemented it, and more than 80% are making some use of TOC,” reads the Benchmark Brief sent out in the February 18, 2014 edition of Industry Week’s Continuous Improvement newsletter. The brief points out that despite the fact that Eli Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints may not “garner the same attention as lean manufacturing or Six Sigma,” its employment by Industry Week’s Best Plants winners and finalists is “robust.”



Amazon CEO Had Top Execs Read Goldratt Classic The Goal

Screen Shot 2013-10-08 at 10.52.38 AMIn an interview about the release of the Kindle Fire Tablet, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos talked about the all-day book clubs he hosted with top Amazon executives, and how the three titles he choose provided “frameworks for sketching out the future of the company.” Bezos discussed this management approach in an on-air interview with CNBC Tech Correspondent Jon Fortt, who revealed the three titles in a subsequent Linkedin Today article.

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Marlin Steel President’s Tribute to Eli Goldratt featured in Inc. Magazine

Goldratt Theory of Constraints“Transformation comes in unexpected places. I met the father of the ‘Theory of Constraints’ just once, but his impact was profound.”

In “The Man Who Saved My Company,” published this week in Inc. magazine, Marlin Steel President Drew Greenblatt pays tribute to Eli Goldratt, who passed away on June 11, 2011.

Read the full article >>