The Goal by Eliyahu M. Goldratt and (in tiny letters) Jeff Cox

Wow!  A business book that was actually fun to read!  I engulfed it in one big swallow last evening.  It’s a novel about a rising star plant manager who realizes that he can save his plant, his career, and his marriage if he concentrates on reaching his true goal, rather than struggling to achieve the milestones defined by his management.  The first step is to understand what the true goal is.  I agree with the message, that your purpose is to reach the goal, not reach the management criteria.  The concepts are well-explained.  The author very effectively uses allegories to get his point across, such as comparing factory production to a troop of boy scouts hiking together through the woods.  There is an excellent discussion of bottlenecks – what causes them, how to cope with them.  Some of the references, such as the marvel of industrial robots and competing with the Japanese, were quaintly 1980’s.  (The first edition was printed in 1984.)

I had to smile at the manly climax of the book, where the manager saved the factory and was promoted over the head of his nemesis Hilton Smythe. 

Could the events in this book have happened in real life?  No way.

The Goal was fun, thought-provoking, and easy to read.  I recommend it.


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