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Reaching The Goal by John Arthur Ricketts

The full title of this book by John Arthur Ricketts is

Reaching The Goal: How Managers Improve a Services Business Using Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints

In my review posted on Amazon.co.uk, I gave it 3 Stars.

Here is my review.

A complicated book suitable for very big companies

To understand my review, you will need to understand my interest. I work with business owners to help them get unstuck and one of the methodologies I use is the Theory of Constraints.

While TOC was developed for manufacturers it has also been applied successfully in a wide range service industries but it’s good to see a book devoted to examining the differences and adapting the concept.

This book is focused on professional, scientific and technical services which are as far from manufacturing as you can get. It also considers intervening points.

It is written by someone from IBM and therefore it has a focus on very large businesses. This makes the book complicated and tough to read as it goes through TOC solutions for resource replenishment, projects, processes, accounting, marketing etc.

It may be fine for an executive in charge of improvement projects in a giant company or for consultants supporting that kind of client but for me the complexity conflicted with the inherent simplicity of TOC for focusing on the few things that really matter.

I was left disappointed but I’d do feel that there is plenty of scope for applying TOC to different types of service business. It is however probably wise to focus on businesses with similar issues. By trying to focus too broadly, I think this book has reduced it’s appeal.




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